One of the problems with Donald Trump’s habit of lying endlessly—aside from the fact that he does it in the first place—is that it affects everyone around him. By chance, today brought this all front and center. We start off with Trump himself:
#Trump tells Cincinnati rally that violent crime is at a 45-year high. It’s actually at a 51-year low, according to latest FBI data. pic.twitter.com/eAKjq35cvp
— Caroline O. (@RVAwonk) December 2, 2016
This is a routine, garden-variety Trump lie. He obviously knows it’s untrue, but he doesn’t care. You see, for him it represents some kind of higher truth. Trump lackey Scottie Nell Hughes, in the course of explaining a different Trump lie, tells us how this works on the Diane Rehm show this morning:
People that say facts are facts, they’re not really facts….There’s no such thing, unfortunately anymore, as facts. And so Mr. Trump’s tweet, amongst a certain crowd, a large part of the population, are truth. When he says that millions of people illegally voted, he has some facts amongst him and his supporters, and people believe they have facts to back that up. Those that do not like Mr. Trump, they say that those are lies and there’s no facts to back it up.
Got that? These things the rest of us call lies are facts amongst him and his supporters. Senior lackey Kellyanne Conway agrees that truth in Trumpworld is a relative thing, but defends it more directly. If Trump says it, then by definition there must be something to it:
.@KellyannePolls on Trump’s unfounded tweets abt fraud: “He’s president-elect so that’s presidential behavior”
— Zeke Miller (@ZekeJMiller) December 2, 2016
Finally, Corey Lewandowski tells us all to just get the hell over it:
This is the problem with the media. You guys took everything that Donald Trump said so literally. The American people didn’t. They understood it. They understood that sometimes — when you have a conversation with people, whether it’s around the dinner table or at a bar — you’re going to say things, and sometimes you don’t have all the facts to back it up.
Apparently we’ve got four years of this behavior ahead of us. Trump’s “facts” aren’t meant to be facts. They just represent a state of mind, or perhaps an aspiration of some kind. His supporters all get this. Now we’d all better get it too.