Thursday, January 26, 2017

Trump lies to support his previous lies: Trump’s absurd claim the 2012 Pew report researcher was ‘groveling’

The Pinocchio Test

It is remarkable that the president of the United States continues makes a false claim with no support, then finds a five-year-old report that doesn’t support his claim, then attacks the researcher of the study when confronted with the fact that the report does not support his false claim.

Trump says Becker was “groveling” when he claimed his 2012 Pew study did not find evidence of voter fraud. Yet since the report was first released, and in contemporaneous news coverage, it is clear that Becker has consistently said his research did not find evidence of voter fraud.

We have given many four–Pinocchio ratings to Trump and his staff for his talking point. We award four more Pinocchios.
“Then he’s groveling again. You know I always talk about the reporters that grovel when they want to write something that you want to hear but not necessarily millions of people want to hear or have to hear.”
— President Trump, interview with ABC News, Jan. 25, 2017

For the first time since taking office, President Trump addressed the 2012 Pew Center on the States report that he and his staff have repeatedly — and unsuccessfully — used to support his claims of widespread voter fraud in the 2016 election.

Trump once again referred to a 2012 Pew report as evidence of widespread voter fraud. When David Muir of ABC News noted the study’s author said he found no evidence of voter fraud, Trump said: “Excuse me, then why did he write the report?”

Then Trump claimed the author was “groveling.” Really?

The Facts


David Becker, who directed the research for the Pew report, has said since the report’s release in February 2012 that there was no evidence of fraud from his findings.

The report, instead, found problems with inaccurate voter registrations, people who registered in more than one state (which could happen if the voter moves and registers in the new state without telling the former state) and deceased voters whose information was still on the voter rolls. Trump did reference these other findings correctly in the interview — but then claimed these findings are evidence of fraud.

In a February 2012 Q&A about the study’s findings, Becker specifically said researchers did not find evidence of voter fraud:

Q. Are these problems leading either to fraud or to efforts to keep eligible people from voting?
A. We have not seen evidence of that. These problems really are the result of an antiquated system — one that relies almost exclusively on 19th and 20th century technologies (paper and mail) to serve a 21st century, highly mobile society. About one in eight Americans moved during each of the 2008 and 2010 election years. Some Americans — including those serving in the military, young people and those living in communities affected by the economic downturn — are even more mobile.
One in four voters assumes that election officials or the U.S. Postal Service updates registrations automatically with each move, even though that is almost never the case, and about half of all voters don’t know they can update their registration at a motor vehicles office.
Election offices often are flooded with millions of paper registration applications from third-party voter registration drives right before Election Day, at a time when their resources are stretched the most.

Contemporaneous news coverage shows that Becker consistently said the research did not show evidence of fraud. Here are a few examples: [...]

In response to Trump’s comments on ABC News, Becker reiterated to The Fact Checker that the scope of his report did not address voter fraud.

“It’s all about the voter list. It was not about fraud at all,” Becker said.

Becker added that many improvements have been made since 2012 to make voter rolls more accurate and up-to-date.

“It’s a five-year-old report,” he said. “So many election officials from across the aisle and around the country have worked to leverage technology and data to make sure the voter lists are serving the voters. I don’t know that I would feel comfortable saying the estimates we reached in February of 2012 would be the same estimates that we would reach today, given the substantial improvements that have occurred in the last five years.”

The White House did not respond to our inquiry.


  1. The party line is that millions of votes were the result of fraud.

    Here are some more party lines from across the political spectrum, brought you by "Politics as Usual, U.S.A".

    -The Constitution guarantees the right for a man to marry a man.

    -The Constitution guarantees a woman the right to terminate a pregnancy at any point.

    -There is incontrovertible scientific evidence of global warming as a result of human generated carbon in the atmosphere.

    -Wall Street bad.

    -Democracy good. Always. Even when it isn't.

  2. It is just embarrassing how obsessed this infantile president is with how others perceive him.

  3. Doesn't this prusta Opa have better things to do - like running the country.

  4. The most successful magicians are those who are best at misdirection. I often wonder if Trump gets the media to focus on trivialities the same way.

  5. I don't think Trump would be going through with this if he didn't have some very strong indications of what he is claiming. Otherwise he could much more easily just sweep the issue under the rug. So my bet is that if this investigation will actually happen, it won't come back empty handed.

  6. yes he will go through it and find evidence that Clinton should have won!
    His own legal team claimed that there was no irregularities in voting when they objected to the Stein recount.
    This is caledl irrational behavior. The facts are irrelevant - Trump feels insulted by his failure to win by popular votes. The fact that the claim cuts both ways and could destroy his legitimacy doesn't seem to have occurred to him

  7. Trump is too smart by half. Yes he gets the media's attention by doing things that no imbecile would do

  8. That's unlikely, and wishful thinking. There is an old clever saying - Never underestimate your opponent. The normal thing to expect when someone makes such a campaign, is that they have something.

  9. If you think that, you are deluded. He has been asked repeatedly what he is basing his false claim on, and he keeps citing a specific report. That report says nothing at all about voter fraud, and certainly says nothing at all about this election, as it was written many years prior. Do you also believe that he has a secret plan to defeat ISIS? That he has a fully developed health care plan to replace the ACA, which no one on his team seems to have heard of? I would call Trump a pathological liar, but I actually think that he fully believes whatever he says at the moment. He just has no way of separating truth from fiction.

  10. Like when he said he will sue the women that accused him of sexual harassment once he became president? Another one of his lies to deceive his faithful?

  11. I believe that Trump tells lies as does every politician. It is especially normal to deny when being accused of sexual harassment, even if it would require lying.

  12. Trump lies more and differently than every other politician because he seems to believe the lies that he tells - despite clear evidence that they are false.

    If you lie you should at least know what is true. But he doesn't

  13. It's just a difference in style. His lies are more clumsy and less conniving. I think you're right that he doesn't always know, and yet he speaks. We are getting to know him and getting to know when he's speaking off the cuff and when it's more thought out, and that's when it's more of a serious statement. It's going to take the American people some getting used to, but we'll get there. In any event I think his lies are less with malicious intent, then someone like Obama who's lies are with intention to stab the American people in the back to promote his hidden agenda. Trump doesn't seem to have a hidden agenda. If he stabs, it's in the front, and not with intention to stab, but rather to promote his open unhidden agenda.

  14. He lies, and he lies to cover his lies. But that is what the RW want. Better than a "liberal-leftist". Whatever mess he makes of the USA, so long as the RW can tell the Left, "you lost so shut up". Hurray for Jingoism and Little America, we are free to talk about those P***'s and N*****'s and insult leftists to their faces.

  15. FYI- That's exactly what a "pathological liar" is, I believe.

  16. I will offer a counter-example. Mr. Trump would show people the childrens' rooms at his historic Florida home and tell them Walt Disney hand painted the pictures on the walls. The butler, in an interview, said he once rollerd his eyes at this statement. Mr. Trump, noticing this, said something that essentially amounted to, "You don't links it when I tell these lies."

    Mr. Trump is manipulating y'all. He's feeding you bait to chomp down and energize yourselves to attack him. Meanwhile, he has free rein to implement huge policy changes that are under-reported and get lost in the shuffle.

  17. no he is not feeding us bait. It is not part of a master strategy. He is undermining his credibility
    Yes he will be bringing about huge changes - just like an avalanche or tsunami. Not looking forward to the train wreck he making

  18. I call 'em like see 'em. I'll be the first to admit I'm wrong and to apologize. But it may be too late by the time I realize my error. For now, the ride is exhilarating.

  19. You miss the point. He gets the media's attention onto imbecilic items. In the meantime they pay no attention to substantive items.
    There was a comedian years ago who played the imbecile on TV while his brother played the smart one. In reality Tommy Smothers was a brilliant negotiator who usually got the upper hand because his adversaries would see him as his stage persona and not realize where he led them.

  20. Problem for your conjecture is that everything he says and does is under intense scrutiny
    His allergy to Truth might have helped him in business but it sure isn't making America great or even getting respect


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