This just keeps happening. It’s almost as if the news media are purposely slanting stories to fit their narrative, unconcerned with seeking facts that don’t confirm their biases?
Nah, couldn’t be.
Over the past week, a “bombshell” story broke involving Trump’s Scottish Turnberry resort, which is currently in financial trouble, and the supposed idea that the US Air Force was having their planes land at an airport close by to help keep it above water. The idea was that without airport access close by, the golf club would further fail and fold up. This was exacerbated by the revelation that a C-17 crew stayed the night at the resort using earlier in the year.
Byron York tackles the details over at the Washington Examiner.
The news was immediately picked up by other media outlets. MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow opened her program Friday with a monologue on the story, followed by an interview with Bertrand. “Now miraculously, now that Donald Trump is president, American military cargo planes have started refueling at that airport,” Maddow said, noting the military “spent $17 million on fuel [there] since October 2017,” even though “it would be cheaper to the military if that fuel had been purchased at a U.S. military base.”
“They’re stopping at the airport that Trump needs to prop up to keep his Scottish golf resort going,” Maddow declared.
As per usual, this all turned out to be mostly fake news, lacking critical context and any semblance of fairness in the reporting.
The only problem with the Politico story was that it was not the whole story. In fact, it omitted so much important information that it hardly qualified as a story at all.
The piece focused on a single Air Force mission, a C-17 military transport flight this year from the United States to Kuwait and back. Bertrand and Bender reported that the plane stopped at Prestwick to refuel, and also that the crew spent the night at Turnberry. According to the article, crew members said they had never stopped at Prestwick before in dozens of trips back and forth between the U.S. and Middle East.
The article made several references to a June 21 document request sent by House Oversight Committee Democrats to the secretary of defense. The Pentagon has not yet responded to the House, Politico said.
But committee Democrats left a number of things out of their letter. Some are available in public documents on the internet, while some came from the Air Force in response to the story.
The first thing to note is that a public database shows the Air Force signed a contract for refuelings at Prestwick in 2016, before the Trump administration entered office. In addition, Air Force planes made many stops at Prestwick before President Trump. According to information provided by Air Force officials, planes stopped at Prestwick 95 times in 2015, 145 times in 2016, 180 times in 2017, 257 times in 2018, and 259 times through August 2019.
Wait, you mean Democrats Representatives and media members bandying this story about were doing so without telling us all the facts? Shocking if true.
The stopover for the true at Prestwick not only wasn’t unusual or “odd,” it was part of a contract that predated Trump and had begun escalating operations before he was even elected. This was done to secure lower fuel prices.
As to the hotel stay, the crew used their own per diem money and went through the proper USAF travel offices to secure the lowest cost room for the night. That just happened to be Turnberry. On the way back, another hotel was cheaper, so they stayed there, showing there was no intention to specifically stay at Trump’s property.
Because the USAF is always worried about appearances these days though, they have opened an investigation into this. It will go nowhere and lead to nothing, but it’s a talking point for the media I supposed.
In the meantime, the Democrat’s “investigation” in the House over this can be added to the long list of pointless investigations they’ve been conducting, desperately searching for any impeachable offense. They’ll come up short again.
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