Nearly a week later, President Donald Trump continues to insist on his claim that Alabama was in the path of Hurricane Dorian was not wrong.
On Friday, Trump took shots at the media on Twitter, letting the issue drag on for a sixth day.
“The Fake News Media was fixated on the fact that I properly said, at the beginnings of Hurricane Dorian, that in addition to Florida & other states, Alabama may also be grazed or hit,” said the president in several tweets. “They went Crazy, hoping against hope that I made a mistake (which I didn’t). Check out maps…
“This nonsense has never happened to another President,” Trump tweeted, further complaining that “four days of corrupt reporting, still without an apology. But there are many things that the Fake News Media has not apologized to me for, like the Witch Hunt, or SpyGate!”
The president went on to say, “The LameStream Media and their Democrat partner should start playing it straight. It would be so much better for our Country!”
The Alabama drama began on Sunday when Trump tweeted, “In addition to Florida – South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama, will most likely be hit (much) harder than anticipated. Looking like one of the largest hurricanes ever. Already category 5. BE CAREFUL! GOD BLESS EVERYONE!”
While forecasts days ago predicted the hurricane might hit Alabama, the Weather Service forecasts at the time of Trump’s tweet indicated that the storm would not hit the state at all because it was heading north instead of west.
“Alabama will NOT see any impacts from #Dorian. We repeat, no impacts from Hurricane #Dorian will be felt across Alabama. The system will remain too far east,” The Birmingham, Alabama, Twitter account National Weather Service tweeted.
The president, angry by the backlash, then spent the next two days further defending himself, even criticizing ABC News chief White House correspondent Jonathan Karl.
“Such a phony hurricane report by lightweight reporter @jonkarl of @ABCWorldNews. I suggested yesterday at FEMA that, along with Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina, even Alabama could possibly come into play, which WAS true. They made a big deal about this…,” the president tweeted. “…when in fact, under certain original scenarios, it was in fact correct that Alabama could have received some “hurt.” Always good to be prepared! But the Fake News is only interested in demeaning and belittling. Didn’t play my whole sentence or statement. Bad people!”
On Wednesday, Trump tweeted a map dated August 28 from the South Florida Water Management District, four days from his initial comments, showing projections and computer models indicating potential hurricane lines extending into Alabama. He said, “This was the originally projected path of the Hurricane in its early stages. As you can see, almost all models predicted it to go through Florida also hitting Georgia and Alabama. I accept the Fake News apologies!”
He would further go on to tweet: “In the early days of the hurricane, when it was predicted that Dorian would go through Miami or West Palm Beach, even before it reached the Bahamas, certain models strongly suggested that Alabama & Georgia would be hit as it made its way through Florida & to the Gulf…
“Instead it turned North and went up the coast, where it continues now. In the one model through Florida, the Great State of Alabama would have been hit or grazed. In the path it took, no. Read my FULL FEMA statement. What I said was accurate! All Fake News in order to demean!”
The president seemingly made matters worse on Wednesday when he showed reporters a several days-old map projecting Dorian’s path that apparently was altered with a black line, some reports say with a Sharpie pen, to show Alabama in the storm’s path.
On Thursday, Trump’s homeland security adviser, Coast Guard Rear Adm. Peter Brown, issued a statement through the White House saying the president made his comments on Sunday after Brown gave Trump a briefing about the hurricane that “included the possibility of tropical storm-force winds in southeastern Alabama.”
Brown said that even National Weather Service forecasts on Monday showed “the possibility” of such winds going through “parts of Alabama.”
The hurricane is currently pounding the Carolinas after causing destruction in the Bahamas. At least 30 have been reported dead in the Bahamas, and as many as four have been killed in the Southeastern U.S. as a result of the hurricane.
Despite the ongoing hurricane controversy, Trump praised first responders in a tweet on Friday. The president said, “Great job by FEMA, Law Enforcement, First Responders, U.S. Coast Guard, and ALL! Keep going, we all appreciate what you are doing!”