There’s the usual lying that every single politician who’s ever lived does to try to get elected, then there’s the type of lying that Donald Trump does. By that I mean, Trump doesn’t just lie – he basically makes up entire alternate realities that lack any regard or concern for being remotely factual. Watching his speeches, it really does seem like something pops into his head and he’ll just state it as fact without a care in the world for whether or not it’s true. From outrageous unemployment numbers to ludicrous lies about 9/11, facts really don’t matter to Trump or those who support him.
So it should come as no surprise that when he tried to compare his dismal polling numbers against Hillary Clinton to Ronald Reagan’s numbers in 1980 against Jimmy Carter, he was completely full of crap.
This week at a campaign rally, Trump’s exact words were:
“My numbers are better right now than Ronald Reagan’s numbers were with Jimmy Carter.”
That’s not a massive statement or lie, is it? Well, I would argue otherwise. You see, Trump’s campaign has been largely predicated on him bragging about his polling numbers. He obviously pays attention to as many polls as he can and places a lot of importance on these results. So he’s clearly aware that in basically every head-to-head poll, he loses to Hillary Clinton and his “favorability rating” is abysmal.
Trying to compare himself to Reagan is just Trump’s sad attempt to try to link his campaign to a Republican party icon.
Though as Politifact noted, Trump’s numbers are much worse than Reagan’s were:
Trump said, “My numbers are better right now than Ronald Reagan’s numbers were with Jimmy Carter. … Ronald Reagan had a 30 (percent) favorability and he was behind Jimmy Carter by so much everybody said, ‘Oh this is going to be a disaster.’ ”
We found that Trump’s deficit against Clinton during March and April 2016 was twice the size of Reagan’s deficit against Carter in March and April 1980. We also found that Trump’s favorable/unfavorable ratings are much worse than Reagan’s were during that same period. We rate his claim False.
Not only is he currently trailing Clinton by twice as much as Reagan trailed Carter, but his favorable/unfavorable numbers are far worse than Reagan’s around the same time during his campaign in 1980. Another way to put it is, absolutely nothing about what Trump said was even remotely true.
Then again, practically nothing Trump says is true. This is par for the course for Trump. In the 126 comments Politifact has investigated as of writing this, a grand total of three have been rated as “True” and seven as “Mostly True.” Meanwhile, 96 of his statements have been rated as Mostly False, False or Pants on Fire – that’s 76 percent.
It really is a testament to the absurdity of the modern-day Republican party that a candidate who lies as much as Donald Trump does has managed to become such an overwhelming frontrunner for the party’s presidential nomination.