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Watch this PBS Frontline Documentary About Trump's Big Lie

Submitted by Robin Messing on Sun, 04/03/2022 - 6:55pm

Our democracy is hanging by a thread. It has never been in more danger during my lifetime, and I'm an old geezer who can remember back to the Nixon Administration. And the source of democracy's jeopardy is Trump's Big Lie that the election was stolen from him. This lie motivated the January 6 insurrection and, just as importantly, it is motivating efforts to place acolytes of this lie in positions where they are the ones who decide how the votes will get counted in 2024. Had they been in those key positions in 2020 then they would have had the ability to overturn the election despite the will of the people.

PBS/Frontline has made an hour-long documentary examining how this Big Lie developed and how it will influence our politics ahead. I have done a LOT of research on this subject, and this is the best documentary I have seen so far. I strongly recommend you watch it.



The only quibble I have is that it's narrative starts in 2020. Trump's history with the Big Lie goes back to at least 2016 when he accused Jeb Bush, Ted Cruz, John Kasich, Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan, and Mitch McConnell of trying to steal the Republican nomination from him. And in 2012 he tweeted that voting machines helped President Obama steal the election from Mitt Romney. There is no doubt that he would have accused Hillary Clinton of stealing the 2016 election if he lost. And he started claiming in May 2020 that the Democrat's would steal the election. He repeated this claim about a half dozen times during 2020--and each time he made this claim, Biden was leading in the polls.

From this we can conclude that Trump would have accused ANYONE who had beaten him in any election--no matter who had beaten him and no matter how wide a margin he was beaten by--of stealing the election. And whether he intentionally planned it or not, by repeatedly predicting the election would be stolen from him, he was priming his base to believe his Big Lie if he lost in November.

I discussed the history of Trump's claiming the election would be stolen from him in much greater detail here.

It is easy to come under the impression from watching the movie that a bunch of shady characters convinced Donald Trump that the election was stolen from him. Actually, this was a claim he was going to make anyway. They didn't convince him of anything. They just provided him with "evidence" which he could use could use to dupe the rubes.

But despite this reservation, I still strongly recommend watching this.