Throughout his presidential campaign, Donald Trump has repeatedly insisted that he was opposed to the Iraq war from the very beginning. On NBC’s Commander-in-Chief forum this Wednesday night, the GOP nominee doubled down on the claim again – with zero follow-up from host Matt Lauer.
Thanks to some audio unearthed by BuzzFeed back in February, we can definitely say that Trump is lying.
“Are you for invading Iraq?” radio host Howard Stern asked Trump back on September 11, 2002.
“Yeah, I guess so,” Trump replied.
The Iraq discussion begins at about 3:40 of the audio below:
According to ThinkProgress, there is no other record of Trump commenting on the Iraq war before the actual invasion.
Lauer is catching his share of heat after the interview aired Wednesday, with many agreeing that he let Trump off the hook repeatedly during the segment, letting falsehood after falsehood go unchallenged – all after throwing a barrage of negative questioning at Hillary Clinton for an entire half-hour.
“I happen to hear Hillary Clinton say that I was not against the war in Iraq,” Trump told Lauer. “I was totally against the war in Iraq from — you can look at Esquire Magazine from ’04 — you can look at before that, and I was against the war in Iraq because I saw that it would totally destabilize the Middle East…”
Lauer moved on.
Another fraudulent statement Lauer let Trump skate by on was his declaration that Clinton “made a terrible mistake on Libya.”
In 2011, Trump said, “Gaddafi in Libya is killing thousands of people, nobody knows how bad it is, and we’re sitting around, we have soldiers all [over] the Middle East, and we’re not bringing them in to stop this horrible carnage… Now we should go in, we should stop this guy, which would be very easy and very quick.”
And Lauer moved on.
Again, throughout his campaign, Trump claimed that he opposed the U.S. effort to depose Libya’s Gaddafi.
There’s no denying that Trump’s past statements show he would have made the same decisions Clinton did. Thanks to Lauer’s abject failure of journalism, millions of people shut off their TVs Wednesday having no idea that the GOP nominee once again played them for fools.