Clinton Fires Back After Trump Shares 2016 Election Theory

He blames Google for 2016 popular vote loss
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 20, 2019 3:48 AM CDT
Updated Aug 20, 2019 6:40 AM CDT
Trump Blames Google for 2016 Popular Vote Loss
Hillary Clinton speaks at an annual Great Issues Lecture sponsored by the John Sloan Dickey Center for International Understanding at Dartmouth College in Hanover, NH, on Wednesday, May 8, 2019.   (Joseph Ressler/The Valley News via AP)

Losing the popular vote in 2016 apparently still stings for President Trump, who repeated a claim Monday that undecided voters ended up choosing Hillary Clinton because of search engine bias. "Wow, Report Just Out! Google manipulated from 2.6 million to 16 million votes for Hillary Clinton in 2016 Election!" the president tweeted, minutes after Fox Business Network referred to congressional testimony last month from behavioral psychologist Robert Epstein who claimed "biased search results" from Google gave "at least 2.6 million votes to Hillary Clinton." "Google should be sued," Trump said. "My victory was even bigger than thought!" In his testimony, Epstein was apparently referring to a study involving a sample group of just 95 voters, 21 of which were undecided, Politico reports. The psychologist, a Clinton supporter, also claimed Big Tech could influence up to 15 million votes in 2020.

Hillary Clinton fired back with a tweet of her own, Politico reports. "The debunked study you’re referring to was based on 21 undecided voters," she told Trump. "For context that’s about half the number of people associated with your campaign who have been indicted." Phillip Bump at the Washington Post takes a closer look at Epstein's research and finds that no information is provided about how the Google searches were conducted or who took part in the study. He concludes that both the methodology and the claim about bias are so dubious that people in authority should be careful about spreading it. "But, on the other hand, it also lets Trump claim almost-victory in the 2016 election," he writes. "And when something does that, Trump rarely shows any signs of hesitation about getting it in front of as many people as possible." (More Hillary Clinton stories.)

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