Shoutout to Steve Cortes for calling BS on fake Trump news: He didn’t call neo-Nazis ‘fine people.’

I keep decrying Republicans and conservative talking heads for rolling over and playing dead when Dems and Deep Staters repeat lies about President Trump.

One of the most harmful lies told was that Trump had said after Charlottesville that neo-Nazis were “fine people.” That lie was repeated last week on CNN (surprise!) when Keith Boykin appeared on “Outfront with Erin Burnett.”

Fellow panelist Steve Cortes immediately called out Boykin and “detailed that Trump’s ‘fine people on both sides’ observation clearly related to those on both sides of the Confederate monument debate, and specifically excluded the violent supremacists.”

Of course, Burnett defended Boykin’s lie with one of her own:

“He [Trump] didn’t say it was on the monument debate at all.  No, they didn’t even try to use that defense. It’s a good one, but no one’s even tried to use it, so you just used it now.” 

Cortes knew better, so he wrote a column asking his bosses at CNN whether they would stick with the lie or the truth revealed in their own contemporaneous reporting about Charlottesville.

In particular he quoted the president’s statement at Trump Tower following the riot at Charlottesville that led to a young woman’s death.

“Excuse me, they didn’t put themselves down as neo-Nazis, and you had some very bad people in that group.  But you also had people that were very fine people on both sides.  You had people in that group – excuse me, excuse me, I saw the same pictures you did.  You had people in that group that were there to protest the taking down of, to them, a very, very important statue and the renaming of a park from Robert E. Lee to another name.”

To confirm that the president wasn’t calling neo-Nazis fine people, Cortes quotes the later statement Trump made at the same press conference:

“I’m not talking about the neo-Nazis and white nationalists because they should be condemned totally.” 

As Cortes notes, these statements taken together are unequivocal. “For any honest person, therefore, to conclude that the president somehow praised the very people he actually derided, reveals a blatant and blinding level of bias.”

Good for Cortes. He showed the intelligence and bravery that too many conservatives, even on Fox, refuse to wield.

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As Cortes also notes, “countless so-called journalists have furthered this damnable lie… The only explanation for such a repeated falsehood is abject laziness or willful deception.”

Unfortunately, those are the conditions that exist throughout cable news and sadly too many newsrooms across the country. That’s why I put together my new collection of essays exposing Fake News in “The Media Matrix.” You can pick up a copy or explore the sample on Amazon.

Frank Miele writes from Kalispell, Montana, at and is a columnist at Real Clear Politics. To support my work, please consider buying my “Why We Needed Trump” trilogy, which documents the downward spiral of the USA before Trump arrived on the scene. The books are available at Amazon in paperback or Kindle editions. Thanks!

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