FactCheck.org has released its “whoppers of 2020” on the year’s political fabrications. Once again, President Trump is in a class of his own.
For the sixth year in a row President Donald Trump has proved he is in a class of his own when it comes to political mendacity. His claims again make up the majority of our top 10 list of the most egregious falsehoods.
And in 2020, two of Trump’s whoppers may well be the most outrageous and damaging of his political career: his false attacks on the integrity of the election and his downplaying of the coronavirus pandemic.
Democratic President-elect Joe Biden also earned spots in our lineup for false claims about Trump’s handling of the COVID-19 outbreak and for wrongly, and repeatedly, saying he was “arrested” while trying to visit Nelson Mandela in South Africa.
Bogus information on COVID-19 dominated the viral misinformation landscape for much of the year. Among the worst of the worst: the “Plandemic” video, which gathered many such falsehoods into a grand conspiracy theory.
Among the “whoppers of 2020” debunked by FactCheck.org:
False Claims of a “Rigged” Election. For months this year, Trump primed his supporters to believe false and baseless claims about voter fraud, repeating falsehoods about mail-in ballots and declaring shortly before the election, “the only way we can lose, in my opinion, is massive fraud.”
Downplaying the Coronavirus. Trump made unfounded and false claims in downplaying and dismissing the coronavirus pandemic, which has now caused more than 300,000 deaths and more than 17 million cases in the United States.
False Criticism of Trump’s COVID-19 Response. In a CNN town hall, Biden made the absurd claim that if Trump “had done his job from the beginning — all the people would still be alive,” adding, “just look at the data.” No research or data supports such a claim. At the time, there had been more than 197,000 deaths from COVID-19 in the United States.
For further details and a complete list, visit FactCheck.org.
FactCheck.org is a nonpartisan, nonprofit “consumer advocate for voters” that was co-founded in 2003 by APPC Director Kathleen Hall Jamieson and journalist Brooks Jackson. In addition to fact-checking political speech, FactCheck.org has a project called SciCheck that has debunks false claims about science, including the novel coronavirus and COVID-19, and is one of the third-party fact-checkers working with Facebook to debunk viral misinformation on the social network.