From the John McCain isn’t a hero bit to calling women ‘fat pigs,’ ‘dogs,’ ‘slobs,’ and ‘disgusting animals,’ Donald Trump so easily denies what he has actually said that Politifact made a list of 17 times he’s said something and then denied it. This is of course the 17 times they counted. There is no way to fact-check all of his claims.
In PolitiFact’s “17 times Donald Trump said one thing and then denied it” we run the gamut of denials from nuclear weapons to fight terrorism to mocking a disabled reporter to offering to pay for supporters who beat up protesters.
We have “I don’t know anything about David Duke” and denying using the “p” word (smear against women) at a rally, even though there is video to prove he’s lying.
There’s the legal fees Trump promised to pay for any supporter who attacked a protester. On video. But he denied that and the terrifying time he suggested he would not rule out using nuclear weapons against terrorists.
There’s the time Trump mocked a disabled reporter and then huffily denied it and accused Hillary Clinton of making it up. But video agreed with Clinton.
This is a man so mendacious that Politifact had to make a list of things he denies saying, even when there is evidence to prove him wrong.
The problem is that Donald Trump’s base never hears the truth, and if they did, they’ve been groomed to ignore it. This is what Republicans’ epistemic closure has built, after years of blaming the media for their own mistakes.
Republicans have a base that does not care about the truth. They want to be lied to. And while the nation is more divided and plenty of Democrats also only want to hear what they agree with, the Democratic party is not pushing them to become untethered from reality by lying to them daily.
There is a vast difference between spinning something to fit the ideology everyone knows you share based on your party and outright denying reality.
Donald Trump is the result of decades of blaming the media for reporting the truth. A candidate who does not give one fig about the truth and lies easily and without shame — this is who the Republican base most wants to be president.
Ms. Jones is the editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah has won two Telly Awards and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.