Friday, July 17, 2020

What did Donald Trump do today?

He lied and got caught and then lied about getting caught.

In a pre-recorded interview with conservative Fox News anchor Chris Wallace, Trump once again falsely claimed that Joe Biden has endorsed the "defund the police" movement. Wallace corrected him, and Trump flared in anger at being contradicted. He then demanded his staff produce proof, only to find that Wallace was correct.

TRUMP: Because they want to defund the police and Biden wants to defund the police. 
WALLACE: Sir, he does not. 
TRUMP: Look, he signed a charter with Bernie Sanders... 
WALLACE: And he said nothing about defunding the police. 
TRUMP: Oh, really? It says ‘abolish,’ it says … Let’s go. Get me the charter, please.

Wallace then narrated what happened next to his television audience today:

WALLACE: So that led to a very interesting exchange where he had his staff go out and get the highlights from that 100-page compact that the Biden team and the Trump team, or rather the Biden team and the Sanders team had signed, and he went through it and he found a lot of things that he objected to that Biden has agreed to, but he couldn’t find any indication, because there isn’t any, that Joe Biden has sought to defund and abolish the police.

Trump was apparently still furious about the exchange tonight:

In reality, this is the closest the Biden-Sanders document comes to any talk about police and funding:

Democrats believe every school should have sufficient funding to employ guidance counselors, social workers, or school psychologists to help guarantee age-appropriate and racially equitable student disciplinary practices, rather than turning to police to resolve these issues.

Trump is correct that the phrase "defund the police" polls badly, but the ideas behind it are overwhemingly popular. A Reuters poll using nearly identical language found that 76% of Americans support "proposals to move some money currently going to police budgets into better officer training, local programs for homelessness, mental health assistance, and domestic violence."

How is this a bad thing?

  • A president whose policies had the support of the American people wouldn't need to lie about his opponent's.