A New York Times columnist was forced to delete a tweet attacking Mitch McConnell when he came to the embarrassing realization that his own employer had already debunked the claim.
Nicholas Kristof thought he had the Senate Majority Leader nailed with his clever conspiracy theory about his net worth only to find out the strange idea that there was something shady about McConnell’s financial growth was discredited by The New York Times, among others, long ago.
“McConnell, your response or explanation?” Kristof tweeted, pointing out how his 2005 net worth and his 2015 net worth saw a $23 million difference.
The Times columnist soon deleted his tweet however, and updated with a link to a Snopes article unpacking what was behind the increase in the Kentucky Republican’s finances.
— Alex Howard (@digiphile) July 31, 2019
The article noted:
Although the meme and the campaign ad upon which it was likely based were set up to make it seem as if McConnell’s wealth increase were the result of his role in the Senate and thus involved unethical or illegal activities, most of his net worth actually derives from his wife, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, who hails from a wealthy business family and married McConnell in 1993.
McConnell’s wife lost her mother in 2007, and Chao’s inheritance made a significant impact on the couple’s finances.
The social media page for the GOP lawmaker called Kristof out on Twitter, noting the impact his first – false – claim had made compared to the correction.
This is how fake news is manufactured.
3,000 likes on the question.
16 likes on the shameful correction. pic.twitter.com/OueN9Bod0P
— Team Mitch (@Team_Mitch) July 31, 2019
McConnell cited the New York Times and its agreement with him that Democrats are “playing politics,” during a fiery speech on the Senate floor denouncing the critics who have fueled what he called a “modern-day McCarthyism.”
“I was called unpatriotic, un-American and essentially treasonous by a couple of left-wing pundits on the basis of bold-faced lies. I was accused of aiding and abetting the very man I’ve singled out as an adversary and opposed for nearly 20 years, Vladimir Putin,” McConnell said.
“I don’t normally take the time to respond to critics in the media when they have no clue what they’re talking about,” he added. “But this modern-day McCarthyism is toxic and damaging because of the way it warps our entire public discourse.”
President Trump came to his defense this week slamming the Washington Post which he said should be “ashamed” for calling the Senate Majority Leader a “Russian asset.”
Trump comes out swinging in defense of McConnell, calls WaPo a ‘Russian asset by comparison’ https://t.co/VNKbXPQniE
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) July 30, 2019
But the debunked conspiracy theory posted by Kristof still made a fresh trip around social media, spread by the left without any regard for sharing the truth. Actress Mia Farrow was among the liberals advancing the discredited conspiracy.
— Chris Conkright (@chris_conkright) July 31, 2019
Mitch McConnell’s net worth:
Increase: $23,965,520 (+809.1%)
How does a senator earning $193,400 a year increase their net worth by nearly $2.4 million a year, every year for a decade? Via @akkitwts
— Mia Farrow (@MiaFarrow) July 31, 2019
Mitch McConnell’s net worth.
Increase: $23,965,520 (+809.1%)
How does a senator earning $193,400 a year increase their net worth by nearly $2.4 million a year, every year for a decade?
This is a good question. I, for one, would like an answer
— VisionaryVoices (@kimterrell14) August 1, 2019
@senatemajldr Tell me again how you are not a #RussianAsset. There needs to be an investigation into how someone manages to increase their net worth by $3mil per year over 10yrs. #MoscowMitch https://t.co/6DmJQ3Ha38
— Sylvia Beardsley?☮️ (@LilBtch1103) August 1, 2019
Mitch McConnell added over two million dollars a year to his net worth, on a salary ten times lower.
Follow the money.
— Frank van Schie (@nebulous_nl) July 27, 2019
McConnell = $1,261,874 from the NRA; his net worth has skyrocketed in office; stacking the courts; his wife in the Trump cabinet to benefit her Chinese shipping family.
Mitch is in on it.
Mitch is not on our side.
— Deborah MacPherson ?? (@debmacp1) July 26, 2019
Other Twitter users slammed the spreading of the “fake news.”
Do better media
— Doug Stafford (@dougstafford) July 31, 2019
Why isn’t this guy asking the Clinton’s that question?
— Nathan H1ck5™ (@NathanHicks23) July 31, 2019
The left doesn’t care about facts. They’ve proved that time and time again
— TaZattac (@TZattac) August 1, 2019
People don’t like what doesn’t match their prescribed narrative.
— Jr (@JrVarTeam) August 1, 2019
If only Nick knew of a publication – say, a newspaper – that did such investigative journalism on occasion.
— Alex Jeffries ? (@the1codemonkey) July 31, 2019
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