PolitiFact Kneecaps Media Attempts to Blame Trump for Ohio Train Disaster

February 24th, 2023 3:15 PM

PolitiFact admitted that former President Donald Trump’s deregulation of an Obama-era rule didn’t have any impact on the Ohio train disaster, despite the media blather insinuating the contrary.

The leftist fact-checker conceded Feb. 17 that even if the 2015 Obama-era regulation “requiring high-hazard cargo trains to be equipped with electronically controlled pneumatic brakes by 2023” was still in effect, it wouldn’t have made a difference in preventing the Ohio train disaster.

“[The rule] would not have applied to the Norfolk Southern train that derailed in East Palestine, Ohio, because it was not categorized as a high-hazard cargo train,” PolitiFact wrote.

This flies in the face of liberal media outlets infected with Trump Derangement Syndrome trying to use the deregulated 2015 Obama rule as a cudgel to wantonly blame Trump for the derailed train. Trump visited the toxic fume-ridden East Palestine on Feb. 22.

MRC Business & Free Speech America Vice President Dan Schneider slammed the media’s attempts to turn the Ohio disaster into an anti-Trump talking point. “The legacy media just can’t help themselves,” he said. “They worked overtime to install Joe Biden as president and they’re doing everything they can to ensure that the Democrats retain the White House even though they’ve got a disastrous track record and terrible candidates.”

Vanity Fair tried to arbitrarily blame Trump for the derailed train in all-caps: “TRUMP FORGETS TO MENTION THE TRAIN SAFETY REGULATIONS HE GUTTED DURING VISIT TO EAST PALESTINE, OHIO.” Despite the Obama rule “technically” having no relevance to the Ohio incident, Vanity Fair still tried to spin that “some believe it would have if not for Trump.”

The anti-Trump hacks at CNN tried to spin Trump’s Feb. 22 visit to East Palestine as focusing “new attention on his own administration’s policies that encouraged the deregulation of the rail industry.” The outlet continued: “Trump ended a 2015 Obama-era regulation mandating for trains carrying ‘large volumes of flammable liquids’ like crude oil to have advanced brakes and speed restrictions – put in place after a number of deadly derailments.”

It was only in the 14th paragraph where CNN admitted that experts were saying "the regulations likely would not have impacted the derailment in East Palestine because the train did not meet the criteria laid out by the Obama administration-era regulation."

The Hill beat a similar drum on Feb. 17 when it parroted the whining of leftist environmental groups “arguing [that] failure to enforce [the 2015 Obama rule] increases the likelihood of environmental rail disasters.”

They also buried its concession that the Norfolk Southern train wasn’t classified as “‘high hazard flammable’” in the eighth paragraph, which ironically unraveled the entire premise of the story. That didn’t stop The Hill from citing the same rule again to pin the Ohio incident on Trump in a Feb. 22 story headlined: “White House: GOP, Trump officials ‘laid the groundwork’ for loose railway regulations.” 

Politico also used the 2015 Obama regulatory rule on Feb. 22, and claimed Trump’s visit offered “a political opening to battered Biden administration officials — by calling new attention to the former president’s record of rolling back regulations on both rail safety and hazardous chemicals.” 

Politico readers wouldn't know it until the 33rd paragraph of the story that the rule was irrelevant to the derailed Norfolk Southern train. As PolitiFact implied, the use of the 2015 Obama-era rule to play “gotcha” against Trump is out of left field:

Although the Norfolk Southern train contained hazardous materials, including vinyl chloride, it did not meet the Department of Transportation’s narrow definition of a high-hazard flammable unit train in that it didn’t have at least 70 cars containing flammable materials, such as crude oil or ethanol. The chemicals it was carrying fall into a different classification not included in this definition. The National Transportation Safety Board told PolitiFact that the Norfolk Southern train was categorized as a ‘general merchandise’ train and it used ‘pneumatic brakes,’ or conventional air brakes.

Even The New York Times — citing PolitiFact — also admitted that the rail safety rule was “repealed as part of a broad regulatory rollback under the Trump administration [and] would have had no impact on the East Palestine derailment.”

Conservatives are under attack. Contact ABC News (818) 460-7477, CBS News (212) 975-3247 and NBC News (212) 664-6192, and demand they correct record on the media's attempts to blame Trump for the Ohio train disaster.