Donald Trump has issued a lengthy statement about the media and voter fraud in response to The Washington Post finally correcting a false article about his conversation with Georgia’s top elections investigator.
In a January article, The Washington Post claimed that an anonymous source had confirmed that then-President Trump told the elections investigator to “find the fraud.”
The correction, issued on March 11, noted that the paper had included quotes in its article that did not exist in a recently uncovered audio recording of the call, which took place in December of 2020 between Trump and an investigator working from Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger’s office.
“The recording revealed that The Post misquoted Trump’s comments on the call, based on information provided by a source. Trump did not tell the investigator to ‘find the fraud’ or say she would be ‘a national hero’ if she did so,” The Washington Post’s correction read.
In a statement to news outlets, Donald Trump said that he appreciates the correction, but he would “further appreciate a strong investigation” into the allegations of fraud in Georgia’s Fulton County during the election.
Jason Miller, a top adviser to Trump, shared the statement on Twitter, writing: “Time for some other media outlets to correct their fake news coverage of this story as well. You know who you are!”
Time for some other media outlets to correct their fake news coverage of this story as well.
You know who you are! https://t.co/hRM0yrGdnY
— Jason Miller (@JasonMillerinDC) March 15, 2021
Problems With the Media
“The Washington Post just issued a correction as to the contents of the incorrectly reported phone call I had with respect to voter fraud in the Great State of Georgia. While I appreciate the Washington Post’s correction, which immediately makes the Georgia Witch Hunt a non-story, the original story was a Hoax, right from the very beginning. I would further appreciate a strong investigation into Fulton County, Georgia, and the Stacey Abrams political machine which, I believe, would totally change the course of the presidential election in Georgia,” Trump’s statement begins.
Donald Trump is right that the original story was a hoax from the beginning, as there was no evidence that Trump ever made the statements that were attributed to him. The mainstream media, especially far-left outlets like the Washington Post, have a bad habit of relying on the word of “anonymous” sources, which often turn out to be people at low-level positions with almost no access to information or knowledge about the actual subject they are speaking on. This story was no different.
William A. Jacobson, a Cornell Law School professor and media critic, discussed this issue on Fox News.
“This ‘correction’ is more than a correction, it calls into question the pervasive reliance of the liberal media on anonymous sources in order to attack and undermine Republicans,” Jacobson said.
“Almost the entirety of the Russia collusion media effort was based on anonymous sources which turned out to be overblown at best, false at worst, after the Mueller Report was released,” he continued. “This raises the question of whether these sources exist at all, or are fed the answers the liberal media wants to create the appearance of reporting for what in reality is a regurgitation of media talking points.”
Joe Concha, The Hill media columnist and Fox News contributor, also spoke about this problem with the media during the March 16 episode of “Fox & Friends.”
“They’re given these conjured-up quotes, and it comes from a nefarious source. Does this all sound familiar? And it’s not Deep Throat we’re talking about here, it’s a political operative that had an agenda,” Concha said.
“It’s kind of like, you go to the beach and you throw up food to seagulls and the seagull doesn’t really check what the food is exactly, they just eat it up. They gobble it up and that’s what happens with the media so often,” he added. “During the Trump era we had all these unnamed source stories that only seem to go in one direction, negative toward the 45th president.”
Concha’s point is objectively true. If we look back at the news during the Trump presidency, we can see that nearly every anonymously sourced story about a conservative, especially the ones that were later proven to be false, went in one direction: portraying them in a negative light.
Donald Trump also made this point later in his statement, writing: “You will notice that establishment media errors, omissions, mistakes, and outright lies always slant one way—against me and against Republicans. Meanwhile, stories that hurt Democrats or undermine their narratives are buried, ignored, or delayed until they can do the least harm—for example, after an election is over. Look no further than the negative coverage of the vaccine that preceded the election and the overdue celebration of the vaccine once the election had concluded. A strong democracy requires a fair and honest press. This latest media travesty underscores that legacy media outlets should be regarded as political entities—not journalistic enterprises. In any event, I thank the Washington Post for the correction.”
Fulton County Issues
Donald Trump didn’t just use this statement as an occasion to bash the mainstream media. He took the opportunity to continue to push for investigations into allegations of fraud and irregularities in the Georgia election, which was his goal during the phone call that the Washington Post mischaracterized in their article. Rather than trying to coerce the elections investigator into finding fraud, as the Post claimed, Trump was pushing for an investigation to ensure that any fraudulent actions were uncovered. He didn’t want fraud manufactured to prove his claims, he wanted legitimate investigations.
“Fulton County has not been properly audited for vote or signature verification. They only looked at areas of the State where there most likely would be few problems, and even there they found large numbers of mistakes. We are seeking to find and reveal the large-scale election fraud which took place in Georgia. Many residents agree, and their anger caused them not to turn out and vote for two Republican Senators in the January election,” Trump’s statement read.
“The Consent Decree signed between Raffensperger and Stacey Abrams was not approved by the Georgia State Legislature, and therefore should be deemed invalid, and the election result changed. Why the Governor and Raffensperger ever approved this Consent Decree is one of the great questions? We look forward to an answer,” the statement continued.
Trump is concerned that fraud was swept under the rug in Georgia thanks to the lack of security around the elections, especially as it relates to signature verification. Before his Twitter account was banned, Trump had already been calling out Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger for his lack of concern over serious allegations against the state’s election security.
“He was unwilling, or unable, to answer questions such as the ‘ballots under table’ scam, ballot destruction, out of state ‘voters’, dead voters, and more. He has no clue!” the former president tweeted.
Donald Trump and his lawyers have also argued that the consent decree, which was a legal settlement signed by Raffensperger on March 6, 2020 after a lawsuit by the Democrat Party, significantly weakened the state’s ability to match signatures and verify legal votes during the election.
Georgia attorney Lin Wood previously filed a lawsuit against Raffensperger which argued that the consent decree was unconstitutional, because the U.S. Constitution requires that only state legislatures and Congress are able to prescribe the “times, places, and manner of holding elections.” As Raffensperger is not a member of the legislature, he should not have been able to change election laws.
Trump has already criticized the decree in the past. In a post on Twitter on Nov. 14, 2020, he wrote, “The Consent Decree signed by the Georgia Secretary of State, with the approval of Governor @BrianKempGA, at the urging of @staceyabrams, makes it impossible to check & match signatures on ballots and envelopes, etc. They knew they were going to cheat. Must expose real signatures!”
The Bottom Line
Donald Trump’s lengthy statement has two main conclusions: 1) the media is doing a terrible job at actually reporting the facts, and 2) there need to be serious investigations into evidence of fraud and irregularities in the election, especially in Georgia.