Today was a bad day for our friends at CNN's morning news block, New Day, which featured a group of Donald Trump supporters repeating our president-elect's completely baseless claim that millions of people committed voter fraud on Election Day, despite significant evidence to the contrary.
The salient and maddening 90-second clip you need to see stars New Day co-anchor Alisyn Camerota, who does her damnedest to try and follow the illogic of five Trump supporters' accusations of "illegal people voting."
The expression on her face transforms in real time from bemusement, to confusion, to outright fury as she treads the path of apparent misinformation (or "fake news" in industry, and increasingly colloquial, parlance) that led these Trumpsters to believe three million people voted "illegally" in California.
JOHNSON: I'm glad I brought that up, Alisyn
CAMEROTA: Me, too, Paula. So where are you getting your information?
JOHNSON: From the media. Where else would we get it?
CAMEROTA: Which media?
JOHNSON: Some of it was CNN, I believe, and —
CAMEROTA: CNN said that 3 million illegal people voted in California?
JOHNSON: Well, it was coming all across the media. All across. If CNN didn't do it, then they were being smart this time.
What follows is a rapid succession of seemingly straightforward questions answered, with unwavering conviction, by a woman whose false claim wilts under the slightest scrutiny.
CAMEROTA: Do you think that 3 million illegal people voted?
JOHNSON: I believe in California that there were illegals that voted.
CAMEROTA: How many?
JOHNSON: I don't — to tell you the truth, nobody really knows that number.
Camerota keeps pushing for evidence to back up the group's voter fraud accusations. The evidence ends up being: "Some shit I read on the internet":
CAMEROTA: But do you think three dozen or do you think 3 million? JOHNSON: I think there was a good amount because the president told
people that they could vote and it happened in Nashua we caught some people —
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
JOHNSON: That they went into Nashua and they said, the president said I could vote. I'm here illegally.
CAMEROTA: Did you hear President Obama say that illegal people could vote?
JOHNSON: Yes, I did.
TONI DIBARTOLO: Yes, I did.
CAMEROTA: On what — on what (INAUDIBLE) —
JOHNSON: I actually did hear it.
CAMEROTA: Tell me, where.
TONI DIBARTOLO: On — you can find it — Google it. You can find it on Facebook.
Our anchor's reaction does a lot of emotional surrogate work for us:
(As Camerota goes on to note, the Trump supporters are referring to a deceptively edited Fox Business Channel clip of an interview between Jane the Virgin star Gina Rodriguez and President Obama about voting.)
Alas, these Trump supporters stand to never be convinced otherwise, likely to their detriment. Because the people best positioned to benefit from pushing misinformation gleaned from misleading "news articles" on Facebook are politicians.
Aleksander Chan is Fusion's News Director.