In a surprising turn of events that illustrates just how isolated and defensive the president is feeling right now, Donald Trump just lashed out at the “news” channel that has become his all-but-in-name personal propaganda network, FOX News.
Smarting from perceived criticism leveled at him by FOX host John Roberts and FOX correspondent Gillian Turner during a shutdown “winners and losers” discussion, Trump took to Twitter and raged, lumping them in with the “FAKE NEWS” at CNN and NBC.
He claimed that they simply don’t “understand his wall negotiations” and hinting that in fact, his humiliating defeat at the hands of the air traffic controllers’ union was part of some grand scheme to ultimately get his wall.
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In a last-ditch effort to make himself feel better, Trump pointed to his poll numbers and claimed that since his poll numbers were “up” 19% with Hispanics, this means that…the shutdown standoff in which he got nothing that he wanted and heaped hardship on hundreds of thousands of federal workers, not to mention wasting billions of dollars, was somehow a success in his eyes.
Never thought I’d say this but I think @johnrobertsFox and @GillianHTurner @FoxNews have even less understanding of the Wall negotiations than the folks at FAKE NEWS CNN & NBC! Look to final results! Don’t know how my poll numbers are so good, especially up 19% with Hispanics?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 28, 2019
This is some pretty elaborate mental gymnastics, even by Trump’s standards. In reality, Trump’s poll numbers took a huge hit as both the right and the left recoiled in disgust at the entire debacle — the left at Trump forcing the standoff in the first place and the right-wing for caving and re-opening the government.
Given Trump’s looseness with the truth and tendency to inflate figures whenever it suits him it’s hard to figure out what poll he’s referring to. If we are to work from the assumption that it is the NPR/Marist/PBS NewsHour poll he referenced in this other tweet where he touts the 19%, he has been wildly misleading about the facts behind that “19%” boost among Hispanics.
While 50% of the Hispanics in that particular poll of 1,023 people did approve, here are the details of how that actually breaks down:
But only 153 Latino Americans were interviewed for the poll. The small sample size of Latino respondents had a “wide” margin of error of 9.9 percentage points…That means the 50 percent approval rating among Latinos that Trump cited could range from 40 percent to 60 percent.
A year later, the 50 percent of Latino approval would amount to a 23 percent increase, not 19 percent. However, it’s not immediately clear which past poll the president was referencing.
Additionally, just 27 percent of Latinos who were polled said they would definitely vote for Trump in 2020, while 58 percent said they would not.
The president could not be grasping at straws any harder in his sad and pathetic attempts to make himself feel better about having backed himself into a corner and then shooting himself in the foot. It is very interesting that he’s starting to turn on FOX News as well — just another reminder that he will throw anything and everyone under the bus if it will keep him from having to take responsibility for his perpetual disaster of a presidency.
This article has been updated to more accurately reflect which polling data the president is referencing in his tweet.