Photojournalist Catches the Truth Behind Trump’s TelePrompter Flub

Photojournalist Catches the Truth Behind Trump’s TelePrompter Flub

President Trump stepped up to the podium last Monday to read prepared remarks about the shootings in Dayton, Ohio and El Paso, Texas. Except that in the final blessings of the speech, he named Toledo instead of Dayton, a different city about 150 miles away.

While many in the media were quick to blame a staffer or a teleprompter error, as is often the case, it took a photojournalist to provide a definite answer. Leah Millis, a photographer for Reuters, tweeted out a photo that clearly showed the president’s teleprompter during the part of the speech in question:

In the text, the words “Texas and Ohio” are clearly visible with Toledo nowhere to be found.

The White House, in what seemed to be a moment of self-awareness, did make a note of the error, which seemed to be entirely on Trump, via a strikethrough in the official transcript that was released to the media later on Monday.

It’s unclear if that would have been the case if the Millis photo had not been widely circulated after the statement.

This isn’t the first time Trump has been held to account by eagle-eyed photographers. Washington Post photographer Jabin Botsford has previously captured Trump’s notes about Ilhan Omar and some really egregious spelling errors in remarks about democrats in the past.

It’s a bit of a sad commentary on photojournalism today when photographers have to worry equally about capturing the moment and surreptitiously capturing the president’s notes at the same time, just to make sure that they can prove their case if the president attempts to label their reportage as “fake news.”

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69 Comments

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Matt Williams's picture

Everything they decide not to believe is "fake news."

Anyone who uses that term can be written off on the spot.

Black Z Eddie .'s picture

Because the majority of them are fake news. You can't seriously believe the likes of CNN haven't been caught (or have admitted) they made up stories against the Pres. They (media) brought the label "fake news" and doubt upon themselves.

Matt Williams's picture

Trump makes about 12 false claims PER DAY.

"Fake news" is a term that was created to instill fear into people (see also: calling the media "the enemy of the people") and allow them to ignore anything they don't want to believe. It's a pretty common tactic among dictators and would-be tyrants. If you can write off anything you don't like as "fake news," then you can say pretty much whatever you want. Like that windmills cause cancer - or that you didn't say something even if it's on video.

Matt Williams's picture

It is very possible. These are tracked by non-partisan sources. This article is WaPo but the data is not from them.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2019/08/12/president-trump-has-m...

Matt Williams's picture

wow, ok. I get giving the benefit of the doubt, but eventually people go beyond deserving such a benefit when they lie on a daily basis. It isn't just slip of the tongue stuff. If you can't see that, then well, that's that I guess.

Matt Williams's picture

It is INCREDIBLY important. We used to THINK Presidents didn't have much power, but Trump has laid that idea to bed by doing things directly against the constitution, obstructing a federal investigation, and things everyone simply thought a president would never do, so there was nothing in place to stop it. He's emboldened white nationalists, expanded ICE, is now targeting LEGAL immigrants, and is leading us into another recession. That's a few of the hundreds, if not thousands, of major things he has done (or in some cases, not done). The Democrats' refusal to impeach is shameful and just goes to show that you can do whatever you want without repercussions if you're the president.

And yes, I do not agree about Carter or Obama. Aside from Trump, the worst President of your lifetime was either Reagan or GW Bush. I'm more inclined to go with Reagan because his presidency is where the Republican party pivoted toward what they are today, and he set us on a disaster course with trickle down economics, drug war, etc, etc. But I would take any President from the last 80+ years over Trump, no question about it.

Anyway, that's all I'll say about that topic.

Black Z Eddie .'s picture

Holy hell, you have things so twisted it's not even funny. Sounds like you're just parroting what you want to believe.

Yet another "orange man bad".

Michael Aubrey's picture

Well, in all fairness...writing "orange man good" articles are much more difficult to pull off.

And if this article were written during Obama's term, about Obama, it would be labeled as racist and the author would be immediately relieved of their job. Sad, but true.

So what? Everyone, and I mean everyone flubs on place names, relatives names, friends wives names, forgets birthdays, loses their keys and forgets to lock doors. What troubles me far more than the President misnaming a city is that this Wasim is a multimedia journalist instructor. Fake news, fake outrage, fake conclusions and fake posting to a photography site. I feel sorry for his students, let's hope he is a much better photographer than he is a journalist.

Except not everyone declares themselves a "stable genius" nor does everyone make the claim to know more about everything than everyone else. He invites the criticism because of his foolish, arrogant and obviously untrue statements that aren't being made coyly as hyperbole but rather as serious statements of fact.

Actually, how would you know that "most people say these things privately"? Thats an oxymoron. The fact that YOU assume so says a lot about why you're looking to make excuses for the immoral reprobate in the white house.

Hmm. Someone doesn't know what the word "transparency" means in terms of government. You think he's transparent because he's rude, obnoxious and a braggart outwardly? SMH.

user-248633's picture

I totally agree

Yeah? Well, what camera, lens, iso, shutter speed and F/stop did he use in the shot?

PS- Who knows more about who is a "white supremacist," the Democrat contenders or this woman?

https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2019/aug/8/alveda-king-mlks-niece-d...

user-248633's picture

This site has jumped the shark

Funny thing is Biden messed up in his reference to the same incidents too. He talked about shootings in Houston (?) and Michigan(?) instead of El Paso and Dayton.

The photo's white balance is off. Trump's spray-tan is way more orange in person.

"President Trump stepped up to the podium .. "

Happy to help here: You step onto a "podium" and you step up to a "lectern".

No need to thank me. You are welcome.

Don't give up your day job, Eric Mazzone.

And how about a little Photoshop work on that teleprompter, changing the words to "And I pray to our merciful Lord in heaven that I do not end up dying in jail like my old pal Jeffrey Epstein."

No doubt about it, OConnor, you are simply an idiot.

JetCity Ninja's picture

false consciousness.

JetCity Ninja's picture

i think it's hilariously disturbing that some of you are mad because the facts don't line up with what you want to believe.

user-248633's picture

It's called Trump Derangement Syndrome.

Motti Bembaron's picture

And it's in this blog... Why exactly?

Motti Bembaron's picture

I had to look at what it means, I am not an American so some of your expressions/abbreviations are not familiar to me.

Yes, I fear you are right. Well, they (fStoppers) are getting lots of comments here and the SEO will help them so I guess they had that in mind.

Too bad they had to resort to that, I wish they took some other direction to liven up this blog.

Matei Horvath's picture

It’s called photojournalism. Look it up.

Motti Bembaron's picture

I don't believe I would call 'Trump Derangement Syndrome' photojournalism but we are all entitled to an opinion :-)

Yeah.... fstoppers has WAY too many trumpets in their commenting section.. like seriously. This man has clear and documented reading disabilities backed by several of his closest aids.

It's not a great article, it's not relevant to the site, and it's just as funny as laughing at a disabled kid in a wheelchair.

But it's not fake, it's not "unfair" and it's fact.

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