Trump Attacks Schumer Precisely, PolitiFact Still Argues He 'Misleads'

January 9th, 2019 8:21 AM

Even when Donald Trump (and aides) precisely word an attack on a Democrat to withstand the "independent fact-checkers," they still find a way to suggest he "misleads". PolitiFact's homepage promised their liberal fans they were "Live fact-checking President Trump's address." They did not promise "Live fact-checking Democrat response to Trump's address."

PolitiFact hasn't checked a fact on Chuck Schumer since July 10. They last checked Nancy Pelosi in November.

They singled out this passage from the Trump address: "Senator Chuck Schumer, who you will be hearing from later tonight, has repeatedly supported a physical barrier in the past along with many other Democrats. They changed their mind only after I was elected president."

Then they insisted it was misleading (and notice how Team Trump used the words "physical barrier" on Schumer): 

This is misleading. The physical barrier Schumer has supported is very different from the wall Trump has in mind.

In 2006, then-Sens. Barack Obama, Chuck Schumer and Hillary Clinton voted for the Secure Fence Act of 2006, which was signed into law by President George W. Bush. They authorized a fence along about 700 miles of the border between the U.S. and Mexico.

The Government Accountability Office reported U.S. Customs and Border Protection had constructed 654 miles of fencing by 2015. That includes the steel fence dividing Nogales in Arizona and Mexico, which is between 18 and 26 feet tall, according to the Associated Press.

The fence they voted for is not as substantial as the wall Trump is proposing -- which is supposed to be higher, longer and more contiguous. In fact, Trump criticized the 2006 fence as too modest during the 2016 campaign.

This underlines that these "fact checkers" are really "context checkers," because the sentence itself is true. Schumer and other Democrats repeatedly supported a physical barrier in the past. It doesn't make Trump's current sentence "un-factual" that he said the fence was too modest as he campaigned. It's an interesting oppositional point, but it doesn't make the sentence "misleading." But this is PolitiFact's posted box from "Share the Facts," which you can share on Facebook or Twitter, or embed in your blog post: 

On the facts under review, this box is more misleading than Trump's "misleading" sentence about Schumer.

This Share The Facts box also appeared on a Twitter account that they spread this claim around.

Like the @PolitiFact Twitter page, the @ShareTheFact Twitter page had nothing on what the Democrats said (the @ShareTheFact page also tweets out other "independent" fact-checkers). previewed the speech by defending Schumer and Pelosi, ruling it was "False" that they favored handing over $150 billion to Iran in the Iran deal (which was their frozen assets).