President Trump’s pleading phone call to overturn Georgia’s presidential election results is a disquieting revelation into how he views the world.
It turns out that the man who claims to have invented the derogatory term “fake news” is a captive of it. President Trump has cried “fake news” at every tidbit of information he views as critical of him or his administration, even when the items are videotapes of him stating that, for example, the coronavirus will just go away.
But the phoniest fake news is the stuff the president has been trafficking in since his Election Day loss more than 60 days ago, the stuff the president admitted wasn’t only from social media but from “Trump media.”
When the president, in his notorious hourlong phone call with Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, kept pushing debunked tales of election fraud, an exasperated Raffensperger pushed back.
“Mr. President, the problem you have with social media, they — people can say anything,” said the secretary of state.
“Oh, this isn’t social media. This is Trump media,” Trump said.
“Trump media” being mostly disinformation websites like Gateway Pundit and Epoch Times that spin tales of ballot stuffing, ballot shredding and massive numbers of votes by people who have moved out of state — all of which have been calmly debunked either by Raffensperger or by Gabriel Sterling, a voting system implementation manager for the secretary of state’s office.
“The reason I’m having to stand here today is because there are people in positions of authority and respect who have said their votes didn’t count, and it’s not true,” said Sterling, who, like Raffensperger, is a Republican who has had to answer all of Trump’s false claims and exaggerations.
“It’s anti-disinformation Monday,” said Sterling. “It’s whack-a-mole again, it’s Groundhog Day again, and I’m going to talk about things that I’ve talked about repeatedly for two months.”
Sadly, dozens of senators and representatives, including newly-elected U.S. Rep. Mary Miller, R-Oakland, plan to object to Wednesday’s Electoral College vote certification with more claims of a stolen election.
Ignoring several judicial rulings against those claims, Miller said that “even a glancing review would uncover the greatest heist of the 21st century.”
What a review would actually show is that Trump’s phone call to Raffensperger last weekend was a ham-handed attempted election heist. And any public official who honors Trump’s claims is an accessory to the diminution of our democracy.