September 27, 2017


Paul Horner, Fake News Purveyor Who Claimed Credit For Trump's Win, Found Dead At 38 (LAUREL WAMSLEY, 9/27/17, NPR)

Though President Trump often derides the mainstream media as "fake news," we know now that there were people who consciously crafted false news stories during the 2016 election and passed them off as real.

One of those people was Paul Horner, who made his living creating news hoaxes that often went viral. Authorities say Horner was found dead last week near Phoenix; he was 38. [...]

He created fake stories for his website National Report that were likely to find a believing audience. In one fake story, The Washington Post reports, he claimed that President Barack Obama used his own money to keep open a "federally funded" Muslim culture museum during a government shutdown. Horner was delighted that Fox News reported that story as fact before they backtracked.

"Is National Report the fake news site, or Fox News?" he asked the newspaper. "You decide."

In an interview with the Post after the 2016 election Horner said, "I think Trump is in the White House because of me."

"His followers don't fact-check anything -- they'll post everything, believe anything," he said. "His campaign manager posted my story about a protester getting paid $3,500 as fact. Like, I made that up. I posted a fake ad on Craigslist."

Posted by at September 27, 2017 5:20 PM


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