Credo Action

Tell USA Today: Stop publishing Trump's lies

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Petition to USA Today and major media outlets:

"Donald Trump is a proven serial liar. Instead of giving him a free platform to mislead, fact-check his blatant lies."

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    Tell USA Today: Stop publishing Trump's lies

    Donald Trump has spit out more than 5,000 blatant lies since seizing the White House, even by a conservative estimate. At his worst, he clocked in with 125 lies in one 120-minute speech.1

    But instead of fact-checking every word from a man proven to be a serial liar, major media outlets continue to give him a free platform to spout his hate. The latest offender is USA Today, which just published an unhinged Trump editorial making already-debunked, false claims about Medicare for All.2

    The constant failure to push back on Trump's lies helped him reach the Oval Office and has continued to help him since.3 The media are supposed to inform people – not mislead them. We need to hold the media accountable and demand they do better, starting with USA Today.

    Tell USA Today: Stop publishing Trump's lies.

    One month out from pivotal midterm elections, USA Today decided it would be a good idea to allow Trump to use its wide circulation to spread obvious lies and rant about "open borders socialism." Trump's op-ed is a sign that Republicans are worried about the appeal of a common sense idea like strengthening Medicare for seniors and expanding coverage through Medicare for All. But it is also an example of how corporate media care more about clicks and pageviews than their duty to inform the people.

    Trump’s op-ed is a conglomeration of previously debunked distortions and outright lies common to Trump’s stump speeches. Journalists roundly denounced USA Today for publishing it:4

    • Washington Post fact-checker Glenn Kessler reviewed the op-ed and said, "almost every sentence contained a misleading statement or a falsehood."5 He also tweeted: “How can @usatoday allow Trump [to] publish an article with documented falsehoods?”
    • CNN’s Jim Acosta commented that the piece “may break the record for the number of falsehoods from a President ever published in a newspaper op-ed,” adding, “Come on USA Today.” Several other journalists also debunked Trump’s falsehoods in the hours after the op-ed’s publication.

    Given the Trump administration’s willingness to blatantly lie to the media, responsible journalists and media outlets must always assume that the Trump administration is lying unless independent evidence shows otherwise. Media executives and journalists must take a strong stand now and fight back against the Trump administration’s lies.

    Tell USA Today: Stop publishing Trump's lies.

    Thank you for speaking out.

    References:

    1. Glenn Kessler, Salvador Rizzo and Meg Kelly, "President Trump has made more than 5,000 false or misleading claims," The Washington Post, Sept. 13, 2018.
    2. Michael Hiltzik, "Trump's USA Today op-ed on Medicare is full of lies — but does anyone really believe he wrote it himself?" The Los Angeles Times, Oct. 10, 2018.
    3. Benjy Sarlin, “Analysis: Trump’s ‘Alternative Facts’ Fight Carries Campaign Bluster into White House,” NBC News, Jan. 24, 2017.
    4. Matt Gertz, "USA Today publishes Trump’s lies," Media Matters for America, Oct. 10, 2018.
    5. Glenn Kessler, "Fact-checking President Trump’s USA Today op-ed on ‘Medicare-For-All,'" The Washington Post, Oct. 10, 2018.