The Slatest

Donald Trump Lied About the NFL, the Kochs, and the Colorado Springs Fire Department

Donald Trump waves to supporters after his speech at the Gallogly Event Center on the campus of the University of Colorado on Friday.

Joe Mahoney/Getty Images

The scope of mendacity this election season is such that noting that something Donald Trump said is factually inaccurate seems at best quaint and at worst pointless. Nevertheless, below is a short series of factually inaccurate statements recently made by Donald Trump.

In what some are saying is an attempt to wiggle out of debating Hillary Clinton (but could just be for love of American football), Donald Trump tweeted on Friday that Clinton and the Democratic National Committee were trying to rig the debates by putting them up against “major NFL games.”

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A few issues here. First, while scheduling the debates might change who would watch them, and, in turn, their impact, it does not constitute “rigging” the debates themselves. Second, the debate schedule was released on Sept. 23, 2015 by the Commission on Presidential Debates (that is, before the NFL released its schedule). Third, Trump said that the NFL reached out to him. The NFL, here embodied by Brian McCarthy of NFL PR, says that this did not happen.

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Then, on Saturday, Trump tweeted that he turned down a meeting with Charles and David Koch, aka the Koch brothers, both of whom wield influence over Republican politics (and therefore American politics in general).

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Koch organization higher-ups said no such request was made.

But these are distortions made about powerful organizations. Surely Trump would not twist the truth so at the expense of, say, a local fire department that had literally just helped him.

He would—and did. On Friday, Donald Trump insulted Colorado Springs fire marshal, saying, “they don’t know what the hell they’re doing” for limiting the number of people who could attend his town hall. Earlier that day, Trump was stuck in an elevator. The Colorado Springs Fire Department safely evacuated all who were trapped (including Trump), suggesting that they do know what they hell they’re doing.

To be fair, though, this is not a lie so much as it is a display of ingratitude and disregard for campaign event attendees’ personal safety.

Read more Slate coverage of the 2016 campaign.

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