8 lies Donald Trump will likely tell during the debates, and yes, this would make a fun drinking game
If there’s one thing we know about Republican nominee Donald Trump about 1.5 years into campaigning, it’s that the man-child will say and do literally anything for attention. And why would he be any different at the first general election debate this Monday? Anyone who doesn’t think Trump will lie his ass off at the debate clearly hasn’t been paying attention. Trump is going to lie. He’s going to lie so hard, guys, with the kind of bravado and bold shamelessness that only someone with in unflappable disinterest in reality can possess. We don’t see this often. It’s going to be beautiful.
At the first debate to air Monday from 9-10:30 p.m. EST, the candidates are slated to talk national security, the economy and wealth inequality, and America’s future — and I have little doubt Trump will find a way to squeeze in his usual regimen of purely unfounded lies and exaggerations. All politicians, in the heat of the moment, might find themselves spewing an exaggerated claim or two over the course of a years-long career, but Trump is unprecedented in his unapologetic dishonesty and refusal to consider the facts.
Ideally, moderators would take people like Trump to task and force them to answer to the truth, but unfortunately, this isn’t always the case (I’m looking at you, Matt Lauer). And to be fair, no one person can reasonably be expected to fact check two people in real time while also moderating the debate. But it will help Holt — and all of us — to spot the lies if we have an inkling as to what those lies might be. When it comes to Trump, we’re in luck because his ass fires off the same lies over and over (although have no doubt, he will probably bust out some new jams just for the occasion). That being said, here are just a few facts and figures to consider when Trump inevitably tells these lies.
Trump for years essentially led the birtherism movement, which claims President Obama, who conveniently just so happens to be America’s first non-white president, was actually not born in America, and recently made headlines for his sudden change of heart. Which was just great and everything — it only took him, like, five years to acknowledge the legitimacy of America’s first black president. It’s chill.
But he continues to spread harmful lies in claiming it was Hillary Clinton who originally suggested Obama had been born outside of America. The claim is based on a 2007 strategy memo published in The Atlantic written by former Clinton aide Mark Penn pointing out Obama’s “lack of American roots.” Sure, the claim might (OK, def) have racially offensive undertones, but it’s a far-cry from Trump’s years-long refusal to acknowledge Trump’s citizenship.
Birtherism is hardly relevant to the debate’s three main topics, but given how recently Trump decided to do a complete one-eighty, I don’t doubt it will somehow pop up when the candidates inevitably get to discussing race.
The dangers of an open immigration policy
Trump kicked off his campaign with the lie that Mexican immigrants were bringing crime, murder, and rape, (all of which are, FYI, super fucking racist and definitively unfounded claims), and I have little doubt he’ll sweepingly blame immigrants for stealing American jobs, taking a page out of the playbook of literally every racist demagogue in the history of our great nation on the debate stage, when asked about jobs. That being said, here is your daily reminder that 1) immigrants create jobs and 2) all U.S.-born workers economically benefit from their work.
The state of Black America
Earlier this month, Trump claimed that black America was a “catastrophe” in literally the world’s most bizarre, offensive pitch to any major voting bloc, and there’s little doubt that he’ll try (and fail) to win over black voters as he answers questions about the economy at Monday’s debate. That being said, it’s worth noting that in terms of crime and economic mobility, numerous studies indicate black Americans are doing substantially better than they were, 40 years ago.
That’s not to say that Trump or any politician who genuinely wants to better the lives of black Americans shouldn’t acknowledge and address poverty rates and struggles with law enforcement and mass incarceration in the black community. But unlike Trump, it’s important to propose real, viable solutions and acknowledge the racist history this inequality is rooted in, which I doubt he’d be able to do since he barely remembers the KKK was (and is), indeed, a thing.
His position on the Iraq War
National security is going to come up, so, courtesy of Trump, Hillary Clinton’s support for the Iraq War will, too. Trump will claim he didn’t support the Iraq War. (He did).
How great he is for women
Trump has repeatedly claimed he would be “the best for women,” but let’s take a look at the facts: He’s allegedly sexually harassed female employees and, asked about workplace sexual harassment, simply suggested female victims should find some other place to work, all while being advised by Roger fucking Ailes; he supports gender role-enforcing maternity leave policies that would disadvantage women seeking jobs and promotions; he opposes abortion rights; and, oh, right, he’s unapologetically said all of this. Keep all of this in mind on Monday night when he inevitably claims he’ll be a hero for women by creating jobs for them.
The community colleges are already “nearly free”
College affordability will inevitably come up as the candidates discuss America’s direction and, thus, delve into millennial-related issues. Trump’s education policy surrogate and campaign co-chairman, Sam Clovis, earlier this year stated that Trump opposes free community college because “[community colleges are] already damn near free,” and while plenty more affordable than other colleges, equating this with being “damn near free” and suggesting that making community college free would be to no one’s benefit is just wrong.
Stop and Frisk
As candidates field questions on national security, there’s little doubt that issues of policing, race, and guns will emerge (I mean, they goddamn better). That being said, Trump recently proposed reinstating of “stop and frisk” policing, which is basically glorified racial profiling. None of this should come as a surprise considering Trump’s total inability to understand the nature of racial bias and policing, but his stance is a little confusing given his hardcore support for arming citizens and eliminating gun-free zones.
Bragging about how “anti-establishment” he is
Trump has consistently marketed himself to his base of disillusioned Americans by claiming to be a political outsider, and he’ll likely try to highlight their differences in background and experience when he debates Clinton. Yet, paradoxically, he can’t go a day without touting his purported billionaire status, and, of course, there was that one time he excused his previous support for Bill and Hillary by saying:
“I’m a business man. I give to everybody. When they call, I give. You know what? When I need something from them, two years later, three years later, I call them, and they are there for me. . . . And that’s a broken system.”
So, sure, he might not be a politician, but that’s not to say that he isn’t a political insider through using his money to buy politicians.