Republicans often claim that they’re the only people who “tell the truth,” and that anyone who debunks anything they say is part of the “liberal media conspiracy against the truth.” The reality is, this is a classic propagandist/conspiracy theorist tactic predicated on discrediting factual information as “part of a cover up.”
It’s simplistic, but it’s also a rather brilliant tactic.
First, you pump out a lot of fear-mongering, nonsensical propaganda that gets people irrationally worked up and afraid. This makes people susceptible to believing in all sorts of insane nonsense because when people are afraid, that’s when they’re the easiest to manipulate. Why do you think the GOP is built upon keeping people fearful of damn near anything and everything? Anything and everyone who isn’t a straight, white Christian conservative is “the enemy trying to destroy traditional American values.”
When it comes to pushing this fear-mongering rhetoric, Republicans seemingly don’t have a level to which they won’t stoop just as long as they believe Republican voters are naive enough to believe whatever idiocy they’re trying to sell.
Take for instance this idea that ISIS is using the U.S.-Mexico border to get into the United States. Despite the fact that there’s literally zero evidence to support this, and numerous fact checks into past claims have overwhelmingly concluded that ISIS is not coming into the United States through the Mexico border, that hasn’t stopped Republicans from repeating this soundly discredited piece of propaganda over the last couple of years.
Well, Texas Governor Greg Abbott became the latest Republican to get humiliated after his blatant lie was completely destroyed by fact-checking site Politifact.
Abbott claimed that, because of President Obama, ISIS was “running through the border.”
“Our country better wake up. We’re facing an existential threat,” Abbott said. “ISIS is running through the border made porous by Barack Obama’s policies.”
Yeah, that’s complete and total bullsh*t. This statement was so ridiculous, Politifact gave it their worst rating of “Pants on Fire,” meaning that there’s literally not a shred of evidence to support any aspect of what was said.
When the Pulitzer Prize winning fact-checking site tried to contact Abbott’s office for clarification, they were told the governor had nothing to add. That’s another way to say “no comment, because I have absolutely no way to try to defend a lie I knew at the time I said it was absolutely not true.”
Politifact ultimately concluded:
We found no factual basis — Abbott offered none — to support the claim that ISIS is “running through” the border. Other claims of ISIS forces marshaling on the U.S.-Mexico border have been debunked, and this one deserves the same fate. Border security itself has been stepped up, by the federal government and Texas, with apprehensions lately on the decline.
Abbott’s claim isn’t just wrong, it’s ridiculous. Pants on Fire!
It’s not “just wrong, it’s ridiculous” — ouch.
I’m sure they’ll try, but Republicans can’t really defend Abbott here considering his office flat-out refused to elaborate, defend or provide any sort of support for his statement. One would think, being the governor of the state of Texas, his office would have ample evidence to support findings that ISIS was “running through the border.”
But every rational person reading this knows that it’s not true, and the only reason Abbott said this is because he knows millions of conservatives are gullible enough to actually believe that it is.
I think Politifact summed it up best when they said that Greg Abbott’s statement wasn’t “just wrong” it was “ridiculous.”
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