MSNBC aired the saddest graph ever Monday to suggest that there has been a substantial rise in the number of tweets President Trump has sent about special counsel Robert Mueller.
The graph aired on Ari Melber’s show “The Beat,” and purported to show how Trump has significantly increased the number of mentions of Mueller on his Twitter account.
Melber noted that Trump had not once mentioned Mueller by name between May of 2017 and February of 2018, yet suddenly mentioned him twice in March of 2018.
It’s not exactly clear why such a simple statistic needed a graph in the first place, but nonetheless, MSNBC’s graphics department created this beauty:
That’s nice that they know how to draw hockey sticks.
There are quite a few things wrong with the graph (beyond the fact that it exists at all).
Who thought it was a good idea to use a line graph? Does ‘0 to 2’ really constitute a significant trend over time? Were viewers unable to comprehend such a rise without a handy chart? Why isn’t it clearly marked where the line ends on the Y-axis?
Not to mention the graph is just plain misleading because it only accounts for tweets and not any public statements Trump has made about Mueller. As Melber indicated in his lead-up to the graph, Trump said in December 2017 that he believed Mueller would “be fair,” said in January 2018 that he was “looking forward” to his interview with Mueller and stated in June 2017 that he believed Mueller is an “honorable man.”
“While Mueller was running that Russia probe, Trump didn’t tweet about him that whole time, even once, until this weekend after the late night firing [of McCabe] where he’s now mentioned him twice,” Melber explained.
Of course, Trump mentioned Mueller three times in those aforementioned public statements and interviews, but apparently those aren’t significant enough to make the line graph.
Sheesh. Perhaps MSNBC should hire an economist next time.