“I’m confident the facts are on my side,” White House Press Sec. Josh Earnest insisted in a condescending rebuke of a reporter– only to be corrected by the White House on Friday.
Earnest smugly declared that Pres. Obama is “the first president since Pres. Eisenhower” to win two straight elections with a majority of the popular vote – and rebuked the reporter who tried to correct him by pointing out that Pres. Ronald Reagan accomplished the same feat.
“Reagan did not do it twice,” Earnest chided the reporter at a press briefing on Thursday. “I'm confident the facts are on my side on this one,” he boasted.
In fact, Reagan did do it twice – so, the White House went back and corrected the claim on its website, changing the measurement from “majority” to “51 percent” in order to make Earnest accurate.
In 1980, Reagan won with 50.7% of the vote, just as the reporter said. In 1984, Reagan garnered 58% of the vote.
In the 2012 election, Obama achieved the 51% mark after his numbers were revised upward in January of 2013.
See the official White House transcript – with its correction of Earnest in brackets – below.