CNN's Stelter Investigates Trump's Twitter Typos: "We Could All Use A Proofreader, Right?" | Video | RealClearPolitics

CNN's Stelter Investigates Trump's Twitter Typos: "We Could All Use A Proofreader, Right?"


Spelling mistakes on social media are not uncommon, but President Donald Trump makes a lot more Twitter typos than most others in the political spotlight. CNN's Brian Stelter takes a closer look with FactSquared CEO Bill Frischling.

BRIAN STELTER: Everybody makes spelling mistakes, all right. Everybody does. I do. Everybody does. But on Twitter, Donald Trump makes a lot more of them than most people. Just this week he misspelled Republican and unfair, but those are hardly the worst examples. We have seen countless absurd spellings from the commander in chief. He is called showbiz shoebiz, there's hamberders, there's the smocking gun, there's a lot of these, even misspelling his wife Melania's name. And he's been ridiculed for it by late-night comics...

That's a thing. That's the truth, right? It's actually not that funny. I know English teachers are horrified by the President's poor form. Lots of other people are embarrassed by it too. But I've never seen anyone do a comprehensive study of his spelling errors or look at what they mean.

So that's where FactBase comes in. FactBase is this excellent Web site that has every single word the president says, some other politicians as well. It looks at all of Trump's tweets, even the deleted ones for this database of typos and other screw-ups. So we gave President Trump the full benefit of the doubt.

These researchers only counted true misspellings, homophone swaps, and incorrect multi-word phrases. So here's what the researchers found, on average, Trump makes a spelling error at least one out of every five days. And since taking office, he's made at least 188 of them total, more than 188 spelling errors on Twitter. Now, what do we compare this to? Let's take a look at Trump's family

members to compare to -- let's take a look at the 2020 Democratic candidates as well and to see how Trump compares. Well, this says it all. Someone like Andrew Yang, 14 mistakes, Bernie Sanders three misspellings, Obama zero. This is during the time since Trump took office.

Donald Trump Jr. tweets a lot so he said 90 mistakes. But generally, all these politicians, they get it right. They're careful. They paid close attention to what they're tweeting. President Trump is really the odd man out on this with constant misspellings on his feed. But it hasn't always been this way.

Look, in 2015, only 18 misspellings, only 18 errors. But there's been a huge spike since he took office. Of course, if he can't get the small stuff right, people worry about the big stuff. And he gets a lot of the small things wrong. Look, the word he misspells most often is counsel as in White House counsel or special counsel.

FactBase found some other frequent misspellings too like Barack Obama, misspelling Barack, maybe thinking of Tom Barrack instead. There's others as well, Capitol Hill he gets wrong a lot. There's a lot of these absurd errors that happen all the time. Trump often mistakes the difference between it is and it's. This is -- missing a difference in these words. So these are some of the most frequent misspellings that we found.

This is -- of course, who can forget covfefe and all of those. Here's Trump's numbers up against Obama's just to give it into perspective here, because again everybody makes mistakes. Obama start tweeting -- Trump start tweeting 2009, Obama's are twenty in 2012. If you compare their errors since joining Twitter, Trump has made 358 of those spelling mistakes, those errors, Barack Obama four.

We could all use a proofreader, right? I think President Trump could use two or three proofreaders. So here to put it all in perspective for us, let's talk to the man who helped us do this research at FactBase, his name is Bill Frischling and he's joining me now from D.C.

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