TRUMP IMPEACHED!

January 10, 2020

Fact-Checking Trump's White House Page

I thought I'd try my hand at fact-checking (or, in the event of a lie of omission by Trump's PR team,  "reality framing") parts of Whitehouse.gov.

When reading through his bio page, I found this interesting paragraph:
On November 8, 2016, Mr. Trump was elected President in the largest Electoral College landslide for a Republican in 28 years. Mr. Trump won more than 2,600 counties nationwide, the most since President Ronald Reagan in 1984. And he received the votes of more than 62 million Americans, the most ever for a Republican candidate. These voters, in delivering a truly national victory and historic moment, rallied behind Mr. Trump’s commitment to rebuilding our country and disrupting the political status quo that had failed to deliver results.
The last sentence is more or less nonsense (how do they know the motivations for all those voters?) so I'll ignore it. It's the next couple that require some serious "reality framing."

First:
On November 8, 2016, Mr. Trump was elected President in the largest Electoral College landslide for a Republican in 28 years.
You'll notice the word "landslide" used to describe the Electoral College win. How many electoral votes did Trump get?

The didn't say, so I will - Trump won 304 to Clinton's 227. This out of 538 electoral votes.

To reality frame this, in 2012 Obama won 332 electoral votes to Romney's 206 and in 2008 he won 365 to McCain's 173. If Trump's 304 electoral votes constitute a "landslide" to the Donnie and his Trumpers, what does Obama's 332 or 365 constitute? Gotta be a bigger landslide, right?

Then there's the curious addition of the phrase "for a Republican in 28 years" tacked on to the end.

What does that mean exactly?

It means they have to go all the way back to 1988 to find a bigger "landslide" in electoral votes to better Trump's flaccid 304 (conveniently hopping over both of W Bush's electoral college numbers).  By the way, in 1988 George W Bush beat Mike Dukakis with what could be safely defined as a "landslide" - 426 electoral votes to Dukakis' 111.

But even then that pales in comparison to Reagan's definite landslide in 1984 when he won 525 to Walter Mondale's 13 or Nixon's just as definite landslide in 1972 when he won by a similar count of 520 to McGovern's 17.

Those last two, my friends, were landslides. The fact that Trump is trying to pass off 304 as a "landslide" is an insult to your intelligence.

The next sentence:
Mr. Trump won more than 2,600 counties nationwide, the most since President Ronald Reagan in 1984.
Is more PR nonsense as "counties" don't actually vote.  Voters vote.

Which brings us to our next sentence:
And he received the votes of more than 62 million Americans, the most ever for a Republican candidate.
Ah, but not the most ever for a Democratic candidate, is it?  That would be Trump's opponent, Hillary Clinton who received almost 3 million more votes than our current (and forever impeached) resident of the White House.

But let's dig deeper into the Trump's deflection here. Trump's PR team wants you to forget that the size of the US population is growing. So in raw numbers, the latest winner will probably always get more votes than the last winner. That's not really much of an accomplishment.

But what about as a percentage of voters? Or of the total population?

Much different story.

Trump's 62 million was only about 46% of the total number of votes cast (Clinton's 65 million constituted about 48%).

As a percentage of the US population in 2016, however, it's only about 19.25% of the whole. As a percentage of the total population Clinton's 65 million is about 20.38 % of the whole - something to think about, I suppose.

By contrast, Romney's nearly 61 million votes in 2012 constitute about 47% of the total number cast (a slightly higher percentage than Trump's) and also about 19.41 % of the US population (also a slightly higher percentage than Trump's).

In fact, as a percentage of the entire US population, more people voted for John McCain than voted for Donald Trump (about 19.71%).

So Trump's claim of "most ever [votes] for a Republican candidate" is, when adjusted for population growth, a complete and utter lie.

And this is just one paragraph from the entire White House website.

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