Ever since Donald Trump launched his candidacy for president with a ride down Trump Tower, his political career has been distinguished by a rather tenuous relationship with the truth. Indeed, the man who rose to fame by claiming he wasn’t a traditional politician has seemingly told as many lies in five years than many politicians do in their entire careers.
And it’s not just the lies. It’s the fact that he repeats claims that have been debunked several times over. He has done it so often that The Washington Post decided four Pinocchios weren’t enough. Glenn Kessler and his team at The Post’s Fact Checker had to create a completely new category for this–“The Bottomless Pinocchio.” Watch here.
In a sane world, Trump’s lies would have sent his approval ratings far lower than the depths to which George W. Bush had sunk by this point in 2008. But even with polls showing him losing badly to Joe Biden, Trump still has an average approval rating of 42.4 percent, according to FiveThirtyEight.
How can it possibly be even that high? Well, a Christian conservative blogger may have one explanation. Wait for it–they seem to prefer a candidate who lies than a candidacy that is itself built on lies.
Tom Gibson, a senior editor at The Stream, the religious right-aligned blog helmed by culture warriors James Robison and Michael Brown, used his recent column to let it be known he’s outraged at the outrage over Trump’s lies. As he sees it, Trump’s critics are missing a key point.
There’s a difference, though, between a politician who tells some lies, and one whose very candidacy is a lie.
As he sees it, Biden’s entire candidacy is fraudulent because he can’t last an entire day “without confusion.” Therefore, we can’t trust him to lead the country. He further claims that there is “an entire machinery of deception built upon intense hatred for Donald Trump”–and that’s why Trump has been branded as a liar.
If Gibson took off his blinders long enough, he’d see that by the standard he sets for Biden, Trump is unworthy of support. After all, Trump’s candidacy has been a transparent fraud from the start.
Let’s review. Trump claims to be the candidate of the forgotten people despite having never worked for anyone unrelated to him in his life. He campaigned against corruption–and yet he and his family have found myriad ways to use the trappings of office to funnel money to the Trump real estate empire. He claimed that he alone could fix what ails this country, and yet mishandled the coronavirus pandemic eight ways to Sunday. He claimed to stand for Christian values and morality while blowing racist dog whistles and reveling in degrading women.
And if he’s complaining about a giant network of deception and hate against Trump, how does he explain the virulent hatred being directed at anyone who raises even the slightest opposition to Trump’s candidacy? In several areas of the country where Trump still walks on water, those who oppose him do so at their own risk.
The mere suggestion that a candidate who lies is preferable to a candidacy that’s built on a lie is laughable in and of itself. But if you’re using that to criticize Biden and prop up Trump, it’s especially laughable.
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