Fact-Check: Was Dorian Projected To Hit Alabama, As Trump Said It Would?
President Donald Trump appeared to be livid with reporting from ABC News White House correspondent Jonathan Karl, who pointed out on Sunday, after a tweet from the president said Hurricane Dorian threatened Alabama residents, that the assertion was not true.
Trump had “misstated the storm’s possible trajectory,” Karl said in his reporting, according to a report from Business Insider.
Karl’s report seemed to spark something in Trump, who responded by attacking him as a “lightweight reporter” and “fake news.”
“I suggested yesterday at FEMA that, along with Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina, even Alabama could possibly come into play [in being in the storm’s path], which WAS true,” Trump wrote. “They made a big deal about this, when in fact, under certain original scenarios, it was in fact correct that Alabama could have received some ‘hurt.’ Always good to be prepared!”
Trump added that he believed “the Fake News is only interested in demeaning and belittling.”
….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!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 2, 2019
Is Trump’s statement accurate? According to the National Weather Service, not so much.
The NWS office in Birmingham, Alabama, seemed to agree with Karl’s reporting. After Trump initially tweeted on Sunday that, “In addition to Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama, will most likely be hit (much) harder than anticipated” by Hurricane Dorian, the federal-run weather agency corrected the president.
“Alabama will NOT see any impacts from Dorian,” the NWS wrote in its own tweet. “We repeat, no impacts from Hurricane Dorian will be felt across Alabama. The system will remain too far east.”
The National Weather Service is itself a federal agency, so its contradicting the president seems to suggest he was basing his assessment on faulty data, not anything from their department or another government agency. According to its mission statement, the NWS exists to “provide weather, water, and climate data, forecasts and warnings for the protection of life and property and enhancement of the national economy.”