Flailing Trump Campaign Shares Doctored Image of a 2000 Newspaper to Dispute Biden’s Victory

They’re spreading disinformation to keep Trump’s presidency afloat.

Alex Brandon/AP

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.

The Trump campaign’s latest attempt to deny President-elect Joe Biden’s victory is to claim that the media can’t call the race, and therefore it’s not over. To make this point, on Sunday the campaign’s spokesperson released an image of the front page of the Washington Times from November 8, 2000 showing the paper declaring Al Gore the winner of that contested election. “A reminder that the media doesn’t select the President,” spokesperson Tim Murtaugh tweeted. But there’s just one catch: the image is a fake.

The image was doctored to make it appear that the paper had called the race for Gore.* In fact, the front page of the Washington Times exactly 20 years ago today announced “President Bush.”

The Washington Times, a conservative outlet, confirmed that the image is a fake.

Donald Trump and his campaign claim the election has been stolen by fraud and that the courts must determine the outcome, though they have no proof of fraud to sustain their allegations. To keep the campaign afloat (and keep GOP allies from deciding the election is over), they have begun complaining that the media isn’t the arbiter of the election. “Since when does the Lamestream Media call who our next president will be?” Trump tweeted Sunday afternoon. 

According to Murtaugh’s tweet, the Trump campaign plastered copies of the doctored image all over the headquarter’s kitchen, raising the question: are they trying to fool us or themselves? Murtaugh deleted his tweet when the image was revealed to be a fake, but Mother Jones saved a screenshot of it. 

It’s unclear if the image remains up in Trump HQ. 

Correction: An earlier version of this article said the Trump campaign altered the image. It has in fact been on the internet for many years.

TIME IS RUNNING OUT!

We have an ambitious $350,000 online fundraising goal this month and it's truly crunch time: About 15 percent of our yearly online giving usually comes in during the final week of the year, and in "No Cute Headlines or Manipulative BS," we explain why we simply can't afford to come up short right now.

The bottom line: Corporations and powerful people with deep pockets will never sustain the type of journalism Mother Jones exists to do. And advertising or profit-driven ownership groups will never make time-intensive, in-depth reporting viable.

That's why donations big and small make up 74 percent of our budget this year. There is no backup to keep us going, no alternate revenue source, no secret benefactor. If readers don’t donate, we won’t be here. It's that simple.

And if you can help us out with a donation right now, all online gifts will be matched thanks to an incredibly generous matching gift pledge.

payment methods

TIME IS RUNNING OUT!

We have an ambitious $350,000 online fundraising goal this month and it's truly crunch time: About 15 percent of our yearly online giving usually comes in during the final week of the year, and in "No Cute Headlines or Manipulative BS," we explain why we simply can't afford to come up short right now.

The bottom line: Corporations and powerful people with deep pockets will never sustain the type of journalism Mother Jones exists to do. And advertising or profit-driven ownership groups will never make time-intensive, in-depth reporting viable.

That's why donations big and small make up 74 percent of our budget this year. There is no backup to keep us going, no alternate revenue source, no secret benefactor. If readers don’t donate, we won’t be here. It's that simple.

And if you can help us out with a donation right now, all online gifts will be matched thanks to an incredibly generous matching gift pledge.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate