Trump Lies to Troops’ Faces About Pay Raise He Gave Them

We all know Donald Trump lies a lot. But this is pathological:

Speaking to members of the military during his surprise trip overseas this week, President Trump spoke about the raises they received. “You haven’t gotten one in more than 10 years — more than 10 years,” he said Wednesday. “And we got you a big one. I got you a big one. I got you a big one.”

He continued: “They said: ‘You know, we could make it smaller. We could make it 3 percent. We could make it 2 percent. We could make it 4 percent.’ I said: ‘No. Make it 10 percent. Make it more than 10 percent.’ ”

It’s one thing to say this at, say, a press conference or something. But Trump repeated this nonsense to the actual troops it applies to. If there’s anyone in the world who knows he’s lying, it’s these guys. They know they haven’t gotten a 10 percent raise, but they have to stand at attention anyway and listen to their commander-in-chief BS them about it.

For the record, the 2017 pay increase (for 2018) was 2.4 percent. The 2018 increase (for 2019) was 2.6 percent. Adjusted for inflation, they’re both pretty close to zero.

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THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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