President Donald Trump continued to lie to everyone who would listen to him, telling them that a Republican senator was in the hospital, when this wasn’t true at all.
It started on Wednesday when asked why he thought his tax reform plan would pass through Congress after the healthcare bill “went down in the Senate” this week, Trump told Fox News contributor Pete Hegsethk:
Oh Pete, the healthcare bill didn’t go down. We have the votes, but reconciliation is a disaster. But as you know, it ends on Friday. We don’t have enough time because we have one senator who’s a “yes” vote—a great person—but he’s in the hospital. So we have the votes.
His comments Wednesday followed a tweet earlier that morning making the same claim:
With one Yes vote in hospital & very positive signs from Alaska and two others (McCain is out), we have the HCare Vote, but not for Friday!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 27, 2017
The only problem is, not a single senator was in the hospital this week.
Trump continued the lie on Thursday, on Fox & Friends:
Trump said 2 more times to "Fox & Friends" that health care can't pass because a senator is in the hospital.
This is a blatant fabrication. pic.twitter.com/vvgRoGUMEL
— Aaron Blake (@AaronBlake) September 28, 2017
Trump just said on six occasions a senator can't vote because he is in the hospital. No one is known to be in the hospital.
— Josh Dawsey (@jdawsey1) September 27, 2017
The president was reportedly referring to Sen. Thad Cochran (R-Miss.), who has been recovering from a urological issue this week, according to USA Today. But Cochran tweeted Wednesday that he was “recuperating at home”—not in a hospital.
Thanks for the well-wishes. I'm not hospitalized, but am recuperating at home in Mississippi and look forward to returning to work soon.
— Senator Thad Cochran (@SenThadCochran) September 27, 2017
The Senate isn’t holding the vote on the Graham-Cassidy bill not because Cochran is in Mississippi but because, as Bill Cassidy stated flatly, “We don’t have the votes” with John McCain, Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, and Rand Paul all publicly opposed. Indeed, as Vox points out,
The real question regarding the whip count seems to be whether or not the bill really has the unanimous support of all the other senators, or if a handful of private opponents are simply laying low and letting those four take the heat.
— FOX & friends (@foxandfriends) September 28, 2017
Your thoughts are welcome in the comment box below. T.Y