Our Pinocchio president

Time to send the Great Prevaricator back to private life

Jim Lundstrom

During his tenure as President of the United States of America, Donald Trump has claimed to be the greatest president ever for the economy, for middle America, for black America, for industrial America, for the military, for veterans, and so on. However, the truth is that the only record he has set is for prevarication.

To date, in his 1,300-some days in office, the President of the United States has told more than 22,000 lies, or an average of 12 lies per day. Yes, he is our lyingest president, and for that reason, it is far past time for him to go. While his base of deplorables don’t seem to mind his lies, the rest of America is better than that and should stand up for truth and the American way by returning Trump to private life where he can do less harm.

The Washington Post has been keeping a running total of Trump’s 22,000-plus lies on its website, and you can read them all at washingtonpost.com, but we have winnowed them down to some of the biggest whoppers.

“Within three short years, we built the strongest economy in the history of the world.”
(this is his most constant falsehood, uttered 407 times.)

“I have done more for the African American community than any president since Abraham Lincoln, our first Republican president.”
(uttered 22 times and patently false.)

“We will always and very strongly protect patients with pre-existing conditions. And that is a pledge from the entire Republican Party.”
(uttered 101 times and recognized as one of the biggest of his tens of thousands of lies.)

“They spied on my campaign, and they got caught.”
(This claim that the Obama campaign spied on his campaign has been repeated 42 times, and is recognized as one of Trump’s many flights of right-wing conspiracy theory fancy.)

“When asked if he supports cutting police funding, Joe Biden replied, ‘Yes, absolutely.’”
(He has repeated this provable lie 31 times.)

“Biden has promised to abolish the production of American coal, oil, shale and natural gas...”
(Uttered 25 times, this does not reflect anything accurate in Biden’s energy plan.)

“We also passed VA Accountability and VA Choice. We’re taking care of our veterans.”
(This lie has been repeated 156 times. Both veterans acts were passed during the Obama Administration.)

“We passed record-setting tax and regulation cuts, at a rate nobody had ever seen before.”
(Uttered more than 200 times, this lie disregards record-setting deregulation by Presidents Carter, Reagan and Obama.)

“[Biden] has pledged a $4 trillion tax hike on almost all American families.”
(This lie, repeated 20 times, ignores the reality of Biden’s tax plan, which is aimed at Trump’s crowd -  corporations and the wealthiest of the wealthy.)
“During the Democrat Convention, the words ‘Under God’ were removed from the Pledge of Allegiance - not once, but twice.”
(Not true.)

“We’re taking care of our veterans. 91% approval rating this month, the VA given by our veterans. First time anything like that has ever happened.” (Showing again how out of touch he is with reality, Trump is referring to a survey conducted in 2014, when Obama was still in office. He has shared this lie a mere 11 times.)

“When the anarchists started ripping down our statues and monuments right outside, I signed an order immediately, 10 years in prison, and it was a miracle. It all stopped.”
(The Veterans Memorial Preservation and Recognition Act of 2013 was signed by George W. Bush. This lie has been repeated 27 times.)

“We set a record last quarter on jobs. The job numbers were, as you know, over 9 million jobs. That’s a record in the history of our country.”
(He has repeated this whopper 12 times. Those jobs were recovered after the coronavirus shutdown.)

“My father was in great shape well into his 80s mentally.”
(Trump family members point out that The Donald attempted to change his father’s will in the early 1990s when the senior Trump was suffering from dementia.)

“Four our Country to be sending 80 million UNSOLICITED ballots is very unfair and a roadmap to disaster.”
(Repeated 74 times, this lie is based in another Trump fantasy conspiracy that mail-in ballots favor Democrats. Documented cases of voter fraud in the U.S. are very rare, despite his constant claims to the contrary.)

“[China made] the largest order of corn in the history or our country, twice.”
(This lie has been repeated a dozen times. The largest order of American corn was placed by the Soviet Union in 1991. China’s July 30 order ranks as the third largest order.)

“I put big tariffs on goods coming in from China, and out of the many tens of billions of dollars that we took in - never happened to China before.”
(He has repeated this lie 58 times. George Washington signed the first tariff act in 1789, when trade between China and the U.S. had been established. Since 2009, Chinese tariffs had generated at least $8 billion a year.)

“They [China] had the worst year they’ve had in 67 years. So this has never happened to them.”
(Repeated 67 times, this lie is an example of Trump’s foggy understanding of the real world. While China had the worst year in terms of economic growth in 27 years, it’s still growing at a rate of 6.2 percent, or three times faster than that of the U.S.)

“They want to take away your gun, take away your - take away your safety and security.”
(This is an old favorite lie of the Republican Party, the Democrats will take your guns. Trump has uttered his version of it 17 times.)

“Socialism is the mainstream of the Biden campaign.”
(Perhaps it looks that way from the far-right perspective of our lying president, but, in reality, Biden is and always has been a moderate Democrat.)

“No administration has ever done so much in the first three and a half years as the Trump administration.”
(Repeated 144 times, this is patently false. In terms of writing bills, he is behind every president since Eisenhower.)

“Under the last administration, drug prices skyrocketed more than 50%. They literally skyrocketed.”
(While there is very little difference between the price of drugs during the Obama and Trump administrations, consumer drug prices did go up 3 percent in 2019, the sixth highest category of growth after smoking products, medical care, energy, shelter and food away from home.

“We ended the war on American energy. We are now an energy-independent country.”
(The revolution in energy pre-dates Trump by several administrations. He has repeated this lie 82 times.)

“We will have set a record, could even by more by the end of the first term, could even be more than 300 federal judges, including Court of Appeals judges.”
(This lie has been repeated 49 times. Reagan set the record with 369 judges, followed by Clinton with 371, and George W. with 324. With 216 judges nominated and confirmed, Trump is behind even Jimmy Carter, who had 260 judges confirmed.)

“As a matter of National Security I’ve signed the Omnibus Spending Bill. I say to Congress: I will NEVER sign another bill like this again. To prevent this omnibus situation from every happening again, I’m calling on Congress to give me a line-item veto for all government spending bills!”
(Technically, this is less of a lie and more of another instance of Trump not understanding how government works – the line-item veto was ended by the Supreme Court in 1998.)

“We’re providing $654.6 trillion in total discretionary fundig for defense. It’s a record. All records for defense.”
(This whopper was repeated 188 times. Obama authorized $710 billion in 2011 and $714 billion in 2010. Trump’s military budget represents just one-third of the defense budget during the Vietnam era).

“So we need vocational schools. Now, they call them, a lot of times, community colleges. I don’t think it’s an accurate description.”
(He is correct. It is not an accurate description because they are two different things and he appears to be the only one who confuses the two because of his lack of real-world experience.)

“All I do is good stuff. The economy is the best it’s ever been.”
(Well, everyone recognizes the first sentence is a baldfaced lie, and the economic growth of the 1950s and ‘60s exceeded today’s growth.)

“The Republicans are 5-0 in recent Congressional races, a point which the Fake News Media continuously fails to mention. I backed and campaigned for all of the winners.”
(This March 2018 pronouncement from the President of Fake News conveniently forgets that in those spring special elections, Democrat Doug Jones won the Alabama Senate race vacated when Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions became Trump’s much-abused Attorney General. Democrats also held onto a House seat in California vacated by Xavier Becerra’s appointment to California attorney general.)

“The House Intelligence Committee has, after a 14-month long in-depth investigation, found no evidence of collusion or coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia to influence the 2016 Presidential election.”
(The House Intelligence Committee made no such conclusion. Divided along party lines, the Republican House members said there was no collusion and the Democrats said the investigation was incomplete.)

“Very soon we are going to Mars. You wouldn’t have been going to Mars if my opponent won, that I can tell you. You wouldn’t even be thinking about it.”
(This lie has been uttered five times. Unlike Trump, Hillary Clinton was on the record during the 2016 presidential campaign supporting efforts to get humans to Mars. NASA’s Mars exploration efforts have been apolitical and began long before Trump took office.)

“Coronavirus numbers are looking MUCH better, going down almost everywhere.”

“We now have the lowest fatality (mortality) rate in the World.”
(The U.S. had neither the lowest mortality rate nor the lowest case-fatality rate when Trump made this claim on July 6, when the ratio of deaths to confirmed COVID-19 cases was 4.1 percent, which placed the U.S. solidly in the middle of global rankings. At the time, it had the world’s ninth-worst mortality rate, with 41.33 deaths per 100,000 people, according to Johns Hopkins University.

“Anybody that needs a test, gets a test. We – they’re there. They have the tests. And the tests are beautiful” and “If somebody wants to be tested right now, they’ll be able to be tested.”
(Trump made these two claims two months apart – in March and May – but the truth was the same both times: The U.S. did not have enough testing.

“Cases are going up in the U.S. because we are testing far more than any other country.”
The truth: COVID-19 cases were not rising because of “our big-number testing.” Outside the Northeast, the share of tests conducted that came back positive was increasing in the summer, with the sharpest spike happening in southern states. In some states, such as Arizona and Florida, the number of new cases being reported was outpacing any increase in the states’ testing ability. And as states set new daily case records and reported increasing hospitalizations, all signs pointed to a worsening crisis.

“I’ve always known this is a real – this is a pandemic. I felt it was a pandemic long before it was called a pandemic … I’ve always viewed it as very serious.”
(Trump has repeatedly downplayed the significance of COVID-19 as outbreaks began stateside. From calling criticism of his handling of the virus a “hoax,” to comparing the coronavirus to a common flu, to worrying about letting sick Americans off cruise ships because they would increase the number of confirmed cases, Trump has used his public statements to send mixed messages and sow doubt about the outbreak’s seriousness.

This kind of pandemic “was something nobody thought could happen … Nobody would have ever thought a thing like this could have happened.”
(Experts both inside and outside the federal government sounded the alarm many times in the past decade about the potential for a devastating global pandemic.)

Trump claimed he was being “sarcastic” when he suggested in a briefing on April 23 that his medical experts should research the use of powerful light and injected disinfectants to treat COVID-19.
(Trump’s tone did not seem sarcastic when he made the apparent suggestion to inject disinfectants. Turning to Birx and a Department of Homeland Security science-and-technology official, he mused: “I see the disinfectant, where it knocks it out in a minute. One minute. And is there a way we can do something like that, by injection inside or almost a cleaning? … It would be interesting to check that.”

Trump made multiple claims that taking hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID-19 is safe and effective. “I happen to be a believer in hydroxy. I used it. I had no problem. I happen to be a believer.” “It doesn’t hurt people,” he commented on another occasion.
(Trump’s own FDA has warned against taking the antimalarial drug with or without the antibiotic azithromycin, which Trump has also promoted. Several large observational studies in New York, France and China have concluded that the drug has no benefit for COVID-19 patients, and Fauci and Trump’s testing czar, Brett Giroir, have also cautioned against it as the president has repeated this claim in recent months.

Michigan has been “like a prison” during the coronavirus.
(Democratic Gov. Whitmer declared a state of emergency on March 10 as the state discovered its first two confirmed cases, and issued the stay-at home order and business restrictions on Mar. 23. But her order was lifted statewide by Jun. 1.)