Donald Trump likes to boast about imaginary achievements that he pretends to have accomplished. No, he has not built any new border wall. Nor has he presided over the best economy ever, or rebuilt a crumbling military, or completed any new trade treaties, or destroyed ISIS, or fulfilled any of the other fallacies he spews to his Deplorables. But there is one thing he can honestly brag about.
For the third time, Trump has been awarded the un-coveted “Lie of the Year” from PolitiFact. It was a competitive year in which Trump was vying against … well, mostly himself. But he couldn’t possibly find a more formidable opponent. After all, he has the distinction of having been documented for telling more than 15,000 lies since he took office.
Trump previously won PolitiFact’s “Lie of the Year” in 2015 for his collective campaign “misstatements.” Then again in 2017, for his repeated denials of Russia’s interference in the presidential election. In 2016 PolitiFact’s Lie of the Year went to “Fake News,” so you might say that Trump deserved a share of that as well. But the falsehood that took the dishonors this year was his brazenly untrue and incessantly repeated assertion that “the whistleblower got my phone conversation with Ukraine almost completely wrong.”
As the detailed analysis by PolitiFact shows, the whistleblower actually got Trump’s phone conversation completely right in every respect. Trump never even tried to cite whatever inaccuracies he purported to see. He simply cried “fake news” and relied on the willful blindness of his supporters to believe him.
However, the enormity of this lie is magnified by the fact that Trump himself actually admitted to doing what the whistleblower alleged. Responding to a reporter’s question about what he wanted from Ukrainian President Zelensky during the phone call, Trump said that “It’s a very simple answer. They should investigate the Bidens.” What’s more, Trump’s chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, also confessed to a quid pro quo from the podium of the White House press office.
And if that isn’t enough, the transcript that Trump is constantly berating everyone to read quotes Trump plainly affirming the whistleblower by conditioning military aid on Zelensky’s help to smear Joe Biden. “There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution,” Trump extorted, “So if you can look into it.” Which is the core allegation by the whistleblower.
So the Trump provided “transcript,” his chief of staff, and his own words, attest to the accuracy of the whistleblower’s complaint. Nevertheless, Trump has denied that obvious truth more than 80 times. And his persistence has paid off, at least with the glassy-eyed members of his cult who faithfully attend his rallies. The Daily Show’s Jordan Klepper proved that by asking the StormTrumpers if they had read the “transcript.” Not a single one said that they had. And even with repeated prodding, they couldn’t grasp why that was so hysterically hypocritical.
How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.
— The Daily Show (@TheDailyShow) December 17, 2019