by Sheri Urban
The source of a quote attributed to Donald Trump about “Sleepy Joe Biden” and Kim Jong Un that was widely promoted by media figures and Trump critics has acknowledged online that he fabricated the “objectively ludicrous quote.”
President Trump in Tokyo: ‘Kim Jong Un is smarter and would make a better President than Sleepy Joe Biden,'” Time Magazine foreign affairs columnist and editor-at-large Ian Bremmer tweeted Sunday.
The quote was left up for several hours, while hundreds of critics of Trump promoted it, among them Democratic Rep. Ted Lieu, Media Matters’ Andrew Lawrence, and CNN contributor Ana Navarro — the latter urging people not to “shrug” the quote off and declaring Trump’s supposed comment “praising a cruel dictator who violates human rights, threatens nuclear attacks, oppresses his people, and kills political opponents” as “NOT FREAKING NORMAL.”
As documented by the Examiner’s Jerry Dunleavy, after the tweet went viral, Bremmer initially posted a defense of his fake quote, describing it as “plausible” and saying it was a comment on “the state of the media and the twitterverse today.” But amid mounting pressure, Bremmer ultimately chose to delete the “objectively ludicrous quote.”
“If this alleged quote from Trump is accurate, it’s a huge propaganda win for the disgusting murderous tyrant that is King Jong Un,” Dunleavy initially posted. “But if this quote is fabricated, it’s a truly deceitful piece of Fake News. And I’d like more than just Ian Bremmer’s say-so before I decide which.” Dunleavy added in an update that Bremmer “has now admitted that he fabricated this viral Trump quote. And yet it is being shared by journalists and congressmen as if it is real.”
UPDATE: President Trump has since responded to the “MADE UP” quote, framing the sequence of events as another example of how things operate in “the age of Fake News.”