NBC Takes Trump out of Context to Claim He Called Confederate General ‘Incredible’

President Donald Trump / Getty

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In a Saturday tweet, NBC News cut a clip of President Donald Trump's speech that omitted context to make it seem like he was praising Confederate general Robert E. Lee, and not Union general Ulysses S. Grant.

In the clip of the Ohio rally NBC News tweeted out, Trump says the following:

It also gave you a general, who was incredible. He drank a little bit too much. You know who I'm talking about, right? So Robert E. Lee was a great general. And Abraham Lincoln developed a phobia. He couldn't beat Robert E. Lee. He was going crazy. I don't know if you know this story. But Robert E. Lee was winning battle after battle after battle. And Abraham Lincoln came home, he said, I can't beat Robert E. Lee.

And he had all of these generals. They look great. They were the top of their class at West Point. They were the greatest people. There was only one problem. They didn't know how the hell to win. They didn't know how to fight. They didn't know how.

Taken in isolation, that sounds like the president thought Lee was the "incredible" general. But NBC News omitted Trump's earlier statement that "Ohio is the state that gave us a great president," which would have clarified that Trump was saying that it was the state of Ohio that "gave you a general, who was incredible." Grant was from Ohio; Lee was from Virginia.

NBC News also omitted the fact that Trump continued and made it clear that he was talking up Lee as "great" in order to compliment the Union general that defeated him, Ulysses S. Grant:

And one day, it was looking really bad. And Lincoln just said—you hardly knew his name—and they said, ‘don't take him. He's got a drinking problem.' And Lincoln said, ‘I don't care what problem he has, you guys aren't winning.' And his name was Grant. General Grant. And he went in and he knocked the hell out of everyone. And you know the story. They said to Lincoln, you can't use him anymore. He's an alcoholic. And Lincoln said, ‘I don't care if he's an alcoholic. Frankly, give me six or seven more just like him.'

Trump complained about the misrepresentation on his Twitter account. Hours later, NBC News' Twitter account issued a correction, but left up the original misleading tweet.

Alex Griswold

Alex Griswold   Email Alex | Full Bio | RSS
Alex is a staff writer at the Washington Free Beacon. He graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 2012. Before joining the Free Beacon, he was a writer for Mediaite and The Daily Caller. He is originally from Buffalo, New York, but regrettably now lives in Washington, D.C. He can be reached at griswold@freebeacon.com

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