President Donald Trump, who never met a meme he didn’t like, on Tuesday tried to defend himself against possible impeachment with a boastful and very misleading map of his supporters.
On Tuesday, Trump tweeted out a county-by-county breakdown of which parts of America voted for him in the 2016 election, overlaid with the pointed text “Try to impeach this.”
The map, though accurate in terms of landmass, conflates empty space with number of supporters: The wide swaths of red match up with few votes for Trump, relative to geographic size.
While Trump won 2,626 counties versus Hillary Clinton, who won 487 counties, she received nearly three million more votes than he did — many of them in the metropolitan areas where the majority of people actually live.
The map’s color-coding of red and blue was quickly questioned, with some Twitter users pointing out mistakes in how it depicts the results. Others offered more accurate visualizations of how many people across the country voted for each candidate.
This one's pretty solid, too. (XKCD) pic.twitter.com/cVerDOQmbX— Devan Stormont (@devan2_0) September 29, 2019
Princeton University history professor Kevin M. Kruse also pointed out that Trump’s map is less red than Republican President Richard Nixon’s. Like Trump, Nixon faced possible impeachment — but resigned before he could be removed from office.
Last week, House Democrats launched an impeachment inquiry against Trump, with Clinton telling PEOPLE, “We are in a crisis.”
“I did not come to that decision easily or quickly,” she said during an exclusive interview set to be published in this week’s issue, “but this is an emergency as I see it. … This latest behavior around Ukraine, trying to enlist the president of Ukraine in a plot to undermine former Vice President Biden or lose the military aid he needs to defend against Trump’s friend Vladimir Putin — if that’s not an impeachable offense, I don’t know what is.”
Look, he had a pretty map too! Even redder than Trump's! pic.twitter.com/i5iHmrnfo3— Kevin M. Kruse (@KevinMKruse) September 29, 2019
Clinton was referring to reports that Trump had stopped financial support for Ukraine, which is in a conflict with Russia, before he pushed Ukraine’s president to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and Biden’s son Hunter.
Trump has said the two were not related and that his call with Ukraine’s president was not improper. He dismissed criticism that he used his power as president for blatant electioneering as a “witch hunt.”
Last week he tweeted, “PRESIDENTIAL HARASSMENT!”
While initial polling does not show a clear consensus on how Americans feel about Trump being investigated for impeachment, several polls do show the public becoming more supportive in the wake of further information about the Ukraine controversy — including the release of an initial whistleblower complaint from inside the government.
Congress is in recess for two weeks, but House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff said hearings could begin as soon as this week.