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Friday, February 17, 2023
Joe Biden's Claims of Cutting the Deficit Get Torpedoed by Twitter's 'Reader Context' Function
President Joe Biden would have gotten away with it too if it wasn’t for you meddling kids and your dog…whistles.
A pretty great addition to the social media platform Twitter ever since Elon Musk took it over is the addition of “reader context.” It tends to pop up when someone — usually a government figure — makes a false claim that is immediately fact-checked by normal people. Not “fact-checkers” belonging to biased organizations like PolitiFact or Snopes.
Biden has been on the receiving end of this type of fact-check multiple times, and he recently received one on Friday that sank a huge claim about how well he’s handling the national purse.
According to Biden, former President Donald Trump increased the deficit four years in a row, but over the last two years, his own administration cut the deficit by more than $1.7 trillion.
“The largest deficit reduction in American history,” he tweeted.
Enter you, America.
A pop-up section below Biden’s tweet noted two important pieces of context that Biden, nor the rest of his administration, thought was important to add. It noted that while the claim was “statistically accurate,” it was still misleading in its claim.
Firstly, it made clear that “COVID spending led to huge deficits in 2020 and 2021” and that ending that led to the deficit reduction of 2022.
Secondly, it notes that Biden made other spending increases that actually brought the 2022 deficit up, and is now 41 percent larger than Trump’s largest non-COVID deficit.
This was then followed up by various sources one can look at to see the facts for themselves. The delicious part is that they come from primarily left-leaning sources, making it hard to dismiss these facts as right-wing propaganda.
This kind of honest fact-checking has likely thrown much of the Democrat’s narrative creation into a wood chipper. Despite almost every outlet under the sun leaning to the left and working hard to advance Democrat propaganda, Twitter is still the defacto town square of today. When normal, everyday Americans log on and see these kinds of tweets, they’ll be less likely to be taken in by falsehoods.
It will be interesting to see just how these fact-checks work against politicians of both sides over time and whether or not it changes the national conversation.