President Donald Trump has invoked Abraham Lincoln in his attacks on the media. At a campaign rally in Montana last night, he made a startling claim about the 16th president and his relationship with the news media of his day.
“You know when Abraham Lincoln made the Gettysburg Address speech—great speech—you know he was ridiculed? He was excoriated by the fake news. They had fake news… they said it was a terrible, terrible speech,” Trump told the crowd.
“I have a feeling that’s going to happen with us,” the President said.
The only media outlets in Lincoln’s time were newspaper, some of which were critical of his Gettysburg speech. However, Lincoln did not use the phrase ‘fake news’ and it is widely understood that newspaper critical of Lincoln were not spreading fake stories about him.
Trump has compared himself to Lincoln before, even claiming that he has a higher approval rating among Republicans. There were no opinion polls in the 1860s. Some of Trump’s supporters have also compared him to Lincoln.