What the Actual Fact? - The Trump Administration's "Alternative Facts"

January 23, 2017 - Matt Taibbi 01/23/2017 Views: 253,133

After presidential counselor Kellyanne Conway defends the use of "alternative facts," Desi Lydic finds a new way to check claims made by the Trump administration. (6:14)

Watch Full Episode

we talked a lotabout the falsehoods

that Donald Trump and his teammade over the weekend.

But on Sunday, we learnedthat Trump's senior advisor,

Kellyanne Conway, hasa different term for falsehood.

The president askedThe White House press secretary

to come outin front of the podium

for the first timeand utter a falsehood.

Why did he do that?

Don't be so overly dramaticabout it, Chuck. What it...

You're saying it's a falsehood,and they're giving...

Sean Spicer,our press secretary,

gave... alternative factsto that.


I like that she can tastethe bull (bleep) in her mouth.

-I like that.-(laughter)

Just that momentwhere Kellyanne's like,

"He gave...Mm. What is that? Mm.

"...alternative facts.

Oh. Oh, what is that?"

My favorite part is,you can tell she's lying,

because right after she says it,

she tries to casuallyflip her hair afterwards,

like she's all chill.

Our press secretary gave...

alternative facts to that,but the point remains...

TODD: Wait a minute.Alternative facts?!

-...that there's... (clears herthroat) -Alternative facts for

the five facts he uttered.

(laughter, applause)

It's the choke,the laugh, the hair.

I honestly wishmy girl had a tell that big.

-(laughter)-I would win every argument.

I'd be like, "Hey, I heard youwere at the club last night."

She'd be like, "No, I went to...my mother's."

(laughter,applause and cheering)

"I thought your mom was dead."

"Yeah, but she's... better now."

(laughter, applause)

Look, the truth is,not all facts are created equal.

To find out which ones are,we turn to Desi Lydic

and What the Actual Fact?

-♪ -(cheering)

-(applause)-Oh, no, no, no, no, no, Trevor,

you can't keep mein your little fact box anymore.

This is Trump's America now.

That's better.

Time to shine a lighton the alternative truth.

Let's talk about the size

of the 45th president'sinauguration crowd.

NEWSWOMAN: Trump blamed the media, again,

for underestimating the number of people

who attended his inauguration.

This despite these photos taken from the Washington Monument

showing smaller crowds

than during Barack Obama's inauguration in 2009.

Yeah, see,the media wants you to believe

that the crowd was smallbased on what your eyeballs

are telling your brain.

But here's an alternative fact.

A lot of people left earlybecause, as Trump predicted,

they got tired of winning.

Another alternative fact.


You just couldn't seeTrump's crowd

because they were wearingpolar bear skin.


You know, the mediadidn't see Trump's crowds

during the campaign,

and I am not surprisedthey can't see them now.

And that is why Trump's claim

that he had the biggestinauguration crowd ever

is so true.

(laughter, whooping, applause)

Oh... and what a shocker,

no matter what Trump saidthis weekend,

people tried to delegitimize it.

They were even doing itwith the weather.

God looked down and he said,"We're not gonna let it rain

on your speech."

In fact, I... when I firststarted, I said, "Oh, no."

First line, I got hitby a couple of drops.

And I said, "Oh, this...this is too bad,

but we'll go right through it."

But the truth is thatit stopped immediately.

It was amazing. And thenit became really sunny...

NEWSMAN: ...Donald Trump yesterday at the CIA,

uh, referred to the sun coming out

after his inaugural speech,

when in factit was cloudy and raining.

-(laughter)-Oh. Oh, I guess CNN knows

what God was doingwith the weather

better than Donald Trump, theman he chose to be president.

-(laughter)-Also, that wasn't rain.

Those were tears of joy

splashing upfrom the record-setting crowd.

-(laughter)-Besides, if it was raining,

why was George W. Bushjust holding his poncho.

(laughter, applause)

Then... then playing peekaboowith his poncho.


Then looking for WMD'sin his poncho.

I mean, that is whyI rate Trump's claim

that it didn't rainhis whole speech

as tremendously true.


You know... but the worst iswhen the media lies

to drive wedgesbetween Trump and other people.

I have a running warwith the media.

They are among the mostdishonest human beings on Earth.

And they sort of made it soundlike I had a... feud

with the intelligence community.

And I just wantto let you know,

the reasonyou're number one stop,

uh, it is exactly the opposite.

NEWSWOMAN: The president has often criticized

the U.S. intelligence community...

NEWSMAN: ...quote...

-WOMAN: Ooh.-Here's an alternative fact.

President Trump has never deniedcomparing the CIA to Nazis.

To him, that's a good thing.

If anything, he's more likelyto retweet them.

I'll tell youwhat I'm concerned about,

and that is this witch hunt,

where the media takes thingsthat President Trump has said

and remembers them.

-(laughter)-And I got to say,

personally, as a woman,I find it very offensive

that the press gets to decidewhat President Trump

is or isn't allowed to say.

I mean, frankly, I'm gladwe don't have a woman president,

because what I am seeingright now is blatant sexism.

And that is why I rateTrump's statement

that he's always respectedthe intelligence community

truer than fact.


-(applause)-Wow, Desi, that was, uh,

-(cheering)-really... amazing.