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Trump shows off doctored hurricane map in apparent attempt to justify his false claim that Dorian would hit Alabama

2019-09-05

President Trump points to an apparently doctored map while talking to reporters in the Oval Office on Wednesday. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

President Trump isn’t giving up on his claim that Hurricane Dorian was going to hit Alabama.

While addressing reporters in the Oval Office on Wednesday, the president pulled out a hurricane forecast map from last week that appeared to have been doctored with a black marker to loop in Alabama in Dorian’s projected path.

“It was going toward the gulf. That was what was originally projected,” Trump said as he held up the conspicuously altered map from Aug. 29.

The bizarre addition to the map appears to have been an attempt by Trump to justify his incorrect Sunday tweet claiming that “in addition to Florida — South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama, will most likely be hit (much) harder than anticipated.”

Minutes after Trump’s false post, the National Weather Service’s Birmingham, Ala., office tweeted: “Alabama will T 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 National Weather Service has not provided any maps or forecasts that projected Dorian would barrel into Alabama.

Trump’s apparently doctored map is the first one to officially suggest so.

President Trump and Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Kevin McAleenan update the media on Hurricane Dorian preparedness as they show an apparently altered map from August 29 in the Oval Office on Wednesday.
President Trump and Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Kevin McAleenan update the media on Hurricane Dorian preparedness as they show an apparently altered map from August 29 in the Oval Office on Wednesday. (JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)

When asked during the Oval Office appearance why the hurricane map had been tampered with, Trump offered a peculiar retort.

“I don’t know. I don’t know. I don’t know,” he said.

He also reiterated his dubious Alabama claim.

“I know that Alabama was in the original forecast, they thought it would get a piece of it. We have a better map...in all cases Alabama was hit, if not lightly in some cases pretty hard,” the president said.

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Donald Trump in the White House

The National Weather Service has not said anything to that effect in any of its projections since Dorian began inching toward the U.S. southeast last week.

A National Weather Service spokeswoman did not return a request for comment Wednesday evening and neither did a White House spokesman.

Dorian remained off the east coast of Florida late Wednesday, churning north toward the Carolinas. Forecasters said the hurricane could slam into South Carolina Thursday morning.