THE BIGGEST DAMN LIE: Fake Tweets Used To Pressure Congress On Gun Violence (VIDEO)

This week’s winner of The Biggest Damn Lie is Texas Republican Congressman Steve Stockman for accusing the White House of using fake tweets to pressure members of Congress on gun violence.

MR. MARTIN:  Absolutely, folks.  All right.

Also, now, of course, folks familiar with our show – we had this great feature during the campaign –


MR. MARTIN:  — that we decided to bring back.

So, you might remember this – right?


MR. MARTIN:  All right, Stefani, this time it’s Texas Republican Congressman Steve Stockman, homeboy from our state.


MR. MARTIN:  He’s the one that invited gun nut and President Obama hater, the rocker Ted Nugent, to the State of the Union address last month.  If you really want laughter, trust me, read some of Stockman’s press releases.  Hilarious.

After creating that bit of mischief, he has now assured the White House – that is Stockman – was using fake tweets to pressure him and other members of Congress on gun violence.  So, he put out this press release.  Quote:

“Obama’s anti-gun activists are trying to defraud Congress using the same scam that sells ‘male enhancement pills.’ A close look at the senders’ accounts reveal[s] only six are actual people.  The other 10 are fake, computer-generated spambots.”

The congressman’s source?  A right-wing blog.

So, my colleagues at CNN decided to check this out, and here’s what happened when one of Stockman’s staffers shows CNN reporter Lisa Sylvester a supposedly fake tweet.


STAFFER:  This is one of the supposed people who contacted us.  As you see, this is the only thing she’s ever said.

MS. LISA SYLVESTER:  That’s the only tweet she’s ever had.


MS. SYLVESTER:  One tweet.


VOICEOVER:  Well, we tracked down that very person, Vera Awah.  [It] turns out she’s not a “spambot,” but a very real person from Livingston, Texas.

MS. VERA AWAH (VOICE ONLY):  As you can tell, I’m real.


MR. MARTIN:  You know, Congressman Stockman and your staff, you might want to use that thing called “Google” before you go on CNN and embarrass yourself.  In less than half of one second, we found this listing with Vera Awah’s phone number, that you could’ve called to get at the truth.

Oh, right, Congressman Stockman.  It’s a little hard for you to handle the truth.  So, Congressman, you told this week’s …


MR. MARTIN:  Stefani, I’m going to start with you.  Surely


MR. MARTIN:  — surely, as a native Texan yourself, you’ve got to be embarrassed when you[’ve] got some folks who are members of Congress from out of state who say stupid stuff and then turn out to look like fools on national television.

MS. CARTER:  Well, I definitely agree with you, and there are a lot of people –


MS. CARTER:  — as you would agree – who have made some really stupid statements in the Republican Party, in particular, and what that does is it turns people off to the Republican Party when we have to, I think, be more of a party of inclusion – particularly with regard to minorities, and because I believe we’re the people’s party.

MR. MARTIN:  Elroy, Louie Gohmert, Stockman – both from Texas.  I mean they embarrass me, as a native.  My God!

MR. SAILOR:  [Chuckles.]  Now – now –

MR. MARTIN:  Surely, as a Republican, you’re sitting there going, “Come on, guys!”

MR. SAILOR:  — you know, I’m so grateful and glad that you brought this segment back, and here’s why:  because both sides – and I’m not going to say they lie — they get a little exaggerated.  It’s theater.  People get excited.  For example –

MR. MARTIN:  Now, he was lying.

MR. SAILOR:  — for example, Secretary Duncan – and it was reported in “The Washington Post” – said, as a result of sequestration, “hundreds of teachers” are already getting laid off.  He gave the name of one.  There was some research.  The principal of the school said she was not laid off as a result of sequestration.

Was that “the biggest damn lie”?  Or –


MR. SAILOR:  — did he just make a point –


MR. MARTIN:  No, no.  It was a lie!


MR. SAILOR:  [Chuckles.]

MR. MARTIN:  But it wasn’t bigger than that lie!

MR. SAILOR:  Well, I – [crosstalk] –

MR. MARTIN:  [Laughs.]

MR. SAILOR:  — but it was the biggest damn lie in my book, so – [chuckles] –

MS. FINNEY:  [Crosstalk] – when it was corrected, they corrected it.

And by the way, this is not the first time.  Part of what is so distressing about this Republican Congress is the lack of use of –

MR. SAILOR:  So, that lie was bigger than his lie.

MS. FINNEY:  — well, no, it was – no, that lie was –

MR. SAILOR:  [Chuckles.]  So, now –

MS. FINNEY:  — one of –

MR. SAILOR:  — we’re talking about –

MS. FINNEY:  — several that –

MR. SAILOR:  — how big the lie.

MS. FINNEY:  — Republican members of Congress are repeating as truth.  You had a member of Mitch McConnell’s staff sending letters to the assistant secretary of veteran’s affairs about some bogus story that was actually on a joke blog about VA benefits going to some of the Guantanamo Bay prisoners.

MR. SAILOR:  So, Karen, we[’ve] got – [crosstalk] –

MS. FINNEY:  Hold on!  Hold on!  Hold on!

Then you had –

MR. SAILOR:  — [chuckling] –

MS. FINNEY:  — then you have – hold on.  Then you have Ted Cruz just making stuff up about Chuck Hagel – [crosstalk] –

MR. MARTIN:  Another Texan.  I’m sorry.

MS. FINNEY:  — which helped to hold up –

MR. MARTIN:  [Chuckles.]

MS. FINNEY:  — the – you know, Chuck Hagel’s nomination, when we have, you know, a couple wars going on, some things going on.  Maybe we should’ve just proceeded with that.

Then you also have Rand Paul essentially – again, felonious information on a blog.  Could’ve Googled it to find out it’s not true.  “Friends” –

MR. SAILOR:  So, “The Biggest Damn Lie” –

MS. FINNEY:  — “of Hamas”?

MR. SAILOR:  — is partisan.

MS. FINNEY:  No, I’m not!

MR. SAILOR:  [Chuckles.]

MS. FINNEY:  I’m saying Republicans have lowered the standards of what they will use to attack, without actually finding out what the facts are.  And then –


MS. FINNEY:  — when challenged, they do not –


MS. FINNEY:  — they won’t – I mean when challenged, they say, “Yeah, I said it!”

MS. CARTER:  Well, I just want to jump in here and just say that I don’t see this as partisan.  When the President of the United States says we’ve got to release illegal immigrants –

MS. FINNEY:  He didn’t say that.

MS. CARTER:  — who are criminals –

MS. FINNEY:  He didn’t say that.

MS. CARTER:  — because of sequestration – that’s – it came from –

MS. FINNEY:  That’s absolu- —

MS. CARTER:  — the Administration.

MS. FINNEY:  — it absolutely didn’t come from –

MS. CARTER:  Where in the –

MS. FINNEY:  — the President –

MS. CARTER:  — Administration did it –

MS. FINNEY:  — so you’re –

MS. CARTER:  — come from?

MS. FINNEY:  — that’s – that’s a lie right there.  It didn’t come from the President.  It didn’t even come from Janet Napolitano.  They’ve already said that it came from a lower-level person.  They’ve already –


MS. FINNEY:  — proven that.

MS. CARTER:  [Crosstalk] –


MS. FINNEY:  So, you’re ma- — I mean so you’re –

MS. RYE:  Hold on.  Hold on.

MS. FINNEY:  — just making that up.

MS. CARTER:  No, no.

MS. RYE:  Well, time out.

MS. CARTER:  So – [unintelligible] – is that is being made up, and that – no one had to do that because of cost cuts.  That is a fear tactic –

MS. FINNEY:  You know what?  You had – [crosstalk]- —

MS. CARTER:  — that’s being used.

MS. FINNEY:  — you had the –

MS. CARTER:  And so that’s not –

MS. FINNEY:  — [crosstalk] –


MS. CARTER:  That’s the biggest lie.

MS. FINNEY:  — chief of staff of the Army –


MR. MARTIN:  Bring me a chair.  I’mma just chill out.

Y’all go ahead.

Bring me a chair.


MS. RYE:  You guys – [crosstalk] –

MS. FINNEY:  So, are you saying that –

MS. RYE:  — for one second?

MS. FINNEY:  — the chief of sta- —

MS. RYE:  You started with Stockman, and on “Washington Watch” – this is not a show –


MS. RYE:  — where you –

MR. SAILOR:  [Chuckles.]

MS. RYE:  — [unintelligible] – as few Breitbart talking points, or Drudge Report.  Like, let’s talk facts here.  We owe –

MR. SAILOR:  Are you talking to me, or –

MS. RYE:  — we – I’m talking –

MR. SAILOR:  — [crosstalk]?

MS. RYE:  — I’m talking – yes.

MS. CARTER:  I agree.  Let’s talk facts.

MS. RYE:  But I’m saying let’s not –

MR. SAILOR:  [Crosstalk] a fact –

MS. RYE:  — let’s not –

MR. SAILOR:  — Angela —

MS. RYE:  — let’s not –

MR. SAILOR:  — [crosstalk].


MS. RYE:  But objection relevant, though.

MR. MARTIN:  Angela, go ahead.

MS. RYE:  But objection relevant –


MR. MARTIN:  One second!  One second!  One second!

MS. RYE:  — excuse me.

MR. MARTIN:  Hold – hold on, Angela.  Go ahead.


MS. RYE: Excuse me.  This segment is called – and, church folks, forgive me – “Biggest Damn Lie” – right?

MR. SAILOR:  [Chuckles.]

MS. RYE:  And somehow –

MR. MARTIN:  Church folks cuss, too, but go right ahead.

MS. RYE:  — but – okay.  But I’m saying – and this is Sunday.

So, I’m saying –


MS. RYE:  — let’s talk about the fact that we have a lie that was selected, and you brought sequestration in this!  And we’re not even talking sequestra- — I can, but I’m saying –

MR. SAILOR:  I brought up another –

MS. RYE:  — let’s not –

MR. SAILOR:  — I just brought – [crosstalk] –

MS. RYE:  — but – but I’m saying –

MR. SAILOR:  — brought up another lie.


MS. RYE:  — don’t come on this show –

MS. CARTER:  Lies aren’t partisan.

MS. RYE:  — and spew – no, they’re not.

MS. CARTER:  Okay.

MS. RYE:  But don’t start spewing stuff that doesn’t even have anything to do with this segment!

MR. MARTIN:  Stefani, go ahead.

MS. CARTER:  Lies aren’t partisan.

MR. SAILOR:  [Crosstalk.]  Wow.  [Chuckles.]

MS. CARTER:  It’s very simple.

MR. MARTIN:  Elroy, go ahead.

MR. SAILOR:  I don’t think –

MS. RYE:  That’s not the point

MR. SAILOR:  — I –

MS. RYE:  — about “lies aren’t partisan”!

MR. SAILOR:  — all right.

MS. RYE:  The point of this segment is –

MR. SAILOR:  You’ve got two –

MS. RYE:  — that was the lie.

MR. SAILOR:  — you’ve got two lies.  All right?  Duncan told a lie, and he –

MS. RYE:  Arne Duncan was not on –

MR. SAILOR:  — apo- —

MS. RYE:  — [crosstalk] –

MR. SAILOR:  — [crosstalk] – apologized!

MS. FINNEY:  Arne Duncan –

MS. RYE:  It doesn’t matter!

MS. FINNEY:  — hold on.  He –

MR. SAILOR:  — [crosstalk] – apologized.

MS. FINNEY:  — apologized.

How about this?  It used to be that if you wrote a letter to the assistant secretary of Defense about some bogus story about prisoners at Guantanamo Bay getting G.I. benefits from the post-9-11 G.I. Bill, you would be fired!

MR. SAILOR:  All right.  Somebody lied there?

MS. FINNEY:  Somebody – yes, absolutely!


MR. SAILOR:  So, should Arne Duncan be fired?

MS. FINNEY:  He apologized.

MS. RYE:  No, because there’s –


MS. FINNEY:  He was given wrong information, and –

MS. CARTER:  He lied.

MS. FINNEY:  — he apologized.

MR. SAILOR:  So, wait.  Who was the congressman that lied?


MS. RYE:  There’s a difference between –

MR. MARTIN:  Congressman Steve Stockman – I don’t believe Congressman Stockman has apologized.  In fact, I do I know

MR. SAILOR:  But, Roland –

MR. MARTIN:  — he –


MR. MARTIN:  — one second.  I do know that Congressman Stockman also at one point thought we should actually have congressional hearings or something into these “fake tweets,” or whatever.

So, I’m goin’, “Dude, seriously.”  I mean he really should apologize for basically saying the Obama digital team was creating these people and making up these tweets because, frankly, he’s dead wrong.  He was proven to be wrong.

MS. FINNEY:  But instead, they’re leaning into it.

My point is when it is found out that what you’ve said is wrong –


MS. FINNEY:  — you don’t lean into it and brag about it and fund raise off of it.  You should actually have some humility and say, “You know what?”

MR. SAILOR:  Some people, it takes a little longer –

MS. FINNEY:  “I was wrong.”  That’s –

MR. SAILOR:  — than others to get –

MS. FINNEY:  — what the se- —

MR. SAILOR:  — to the truth.

MR. MARTIN:  All right.

MS. RYE:  Some people – it never happens!

MR. MARTIN:  All right.  Y’all keep talking.  I[’ve] got to go pay some bills.


MR. MARTIN:  We certainly appreciate everybody being here.  Stefani, Karen, Elroy, Angela, thanks a bunch.