President Donald Trump smiles during a meeting with Chilean president Sebastian Pinera, in the Oval Office of the White House, Friday, Sept. 28, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Time Magazine columnist and New York University professor Ian Bremmer fabricated a quote on Sunday and attributed it to Trump. Then, he sent out the following tweet (now deleted.) “President Trump in Tokyo: Kim Jong Un is smarter and would make a better President than Sleepy Joe Biden.”
It stayed up on Twitter for several hours before Bremmer admitted he had made it up and deleted it. In the meantime, however, the outrage toward President Trump for “making such a statement” was overwhelming.
CNN’s Ana Navarro tweeted, “Don’t shrug your shoulders. Don’t accept this insanity. The President of the United States praising a cruel dictator who violates human rights, threatens nuclear attacks, oppresses his people, and kills political opponents IS NOT FREAKING NORMAL.”
Several Democratic lawmakers also shared the quote.
Media Matters’ Andrew Lawrence, shared and commented on Bremmer’s quote. He said it was “equally incredible how easily manipulated the president is and also that democrats havent [sic] figured out how to take advantage of this yet.”
The Washington Examiner’s Jerry Dunleavy tweeted, “If this alleged quote from Trump is accurate, it’s a huge propaganda win for the disgusting murderous tyrant that is King Jong Un. But if this quote is fabricated, it’s a truly deceitful piece of Fake News. And I’d like more than just Ian Bremmer’s say-so before I decide which.
At 1:30 pm, Dunleavy tweeted, “UPDATE:
@ianbremmer has now admitted that he fabricated this viral Trump quote. And yet it is being shared by journalists and congressmen as if it is real.”
Dunleavy later wrote an article about Bremmer’s tweet in the Washington Examiner:
The quote was unverified by journalists in the traveling pool with Trump in Japan. Once confronted about it online by a Washington Examiner reporter [Dunleavy], Bremmer admitted it was false, though he said it could be “plausible.”
Bremmer later defended sharing a fake Trump quote by saying that “it’s a comment on the state of media and the twitterverse today.”
Bremmer also responded to the reporter’s tweet by calling his own tweet an “objectively ludicrous quote.” And Bremmer tried to defend his spreading of false information by calling his fake quote “kinda plausible … especially on Twitter, where people automatically support whatever political position they have.”
“That’s the point,” Bremmer claimed.
Bremmer’s fabricated statement follows a controversial tweet from President Trump himself earlier Sunday, where Trump dismissed concerns about North Korean strongman Kim Jong Un’s ongoing missile tests. Trump attacked former Vice President Joe Biden, saying that Kim Jong Un “smiled when he called Swampman Joe Biden a low IQ individual and worse.”
Trump responded to the flap with another tweet.
.@ianbremmer now admits that he MADE UP “a completely ludicrous quote,” attributing it to me. This is what’s going on in the age of Fake News. People think they can say anything and get away with it. Really, the libel laws should be changed to hold Fake News Media accountable!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 27, 2019
Where is the outrage?