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Remember that old kindergarten game where you had to guess the amount of jelly beans in a jar? And whoever guessed the right amount won all the candy? Well, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany was probably really bad at it. Earlier today, McEnany falsely claimed on Twitter that there were “more than one million marchers” at the so-called “Million MAGA March.”
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Her comment was promptly fact-checked and ridiculed by media Twitter with many pundits pointing out that the size of Saturday’s rally paled in comparison to the Women’s March in 2016, and that the real number of participants, according to the USA Today, was somewhere in the tens of thousands range. No jelly beans for McEnany, or for President Trump for that matter. The outgoing president joined in on the lies when he, upon returning home from the golf course, tweeted his own take: “Hundreds of thousands of people showing their support in D.C.!” Closer, but still way off.
While we won’t know the full tally until after the event, there was a sizable crowd in attendance and plenty of mayhem and clashing ensued. According to the Washington Post, Biden and Trump supporters exchanged profanities, threw bottles and debris at each other, and shouted threats at anti-Trump onlookers. The Washington D.C. police department said they have arrested 10 people in connection with the rally and four of those arrests were for firearms violations.
If anything, this is what McEnany and Trump should be tweeting about—alongside calls for civility and peaceful protest. But instead they are egging on divisiveness and sowing the seeds for more needless conflict in an apparent attempt to do as much damage as possible on their way out the door.
Abigail Covington is a journalist and cultural critic based in Brooklyn, New York but originally from North Carolina, whose work has appeared in Slate, The Nation, Oxford American, and Pitchfork
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