According to the Washington Post, counties that hosted Donald Trump rallies saw a 226 percent increase in hate crimes in the months following Trump’s stop in town.
Using the Anti-Defamation League’s Hate Extremism Anti-Semitism and Terrorism map, the Post checked for a correlation between the counties that hosted one of Trump’s presidential rallies in 2016 and upticks in hate crime activity.
Controlling for crime rates, active hate groups, minority population, college education, and location in the country, the HEAT map showed the jump in hate crimes over comparable counties that did not host Trump.
From the Post:
Of course, our analysis cannot be certain it was Trump’s campaign rally rhetoric that caused people to commit more hate crimes in the host county. However, suggestions that this effect can be explained through a plethora of faux hate crimes are at best unrealistic. In fact, this charge is frequently used as a political tool to dismiss concerns about hate crimes. Researchshows it is far more likely that hate crime statistics are considerably lower because of underreporting.
Additionally, it is hard to discount a “Trump effect” when a considerable number of these reported hate crimes reference Trump. According to the ADL’s 2016 data, these incidents included vandalism, intimidation and assault.
While the Post took its time to spell out that correlation is not causation, it is worth noting that the 2017 FBI Universal Crime Report reported a 17 percent increase in over the year prior. According to research conducted by the Department of Political Science at Tufts University, “exposure to Trump’s prejudiced statements made people more more likely to write offensive things, not only about the groups targeted by Trump, but sometimes about other identity groups as well.”