Police Refute NPR Reporter’s Low Estimate of Trump’s Georgia Rally Crowd

A sheriff’s department estimate pushes back on a reporter for a taxpayer-supported media outlet — who was widely cited by other media — over his claims regarding the size of the crowd that attended former President Donald Trump’s rally in Commerce, Ga., over the weekend.

Stephen Fowler, a reporter for Georgia Public Broadcasting, a local affiliate of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and National Public Radio, attended the rally for 2022 Republican candidates in the Peach State, estimating that there were “no more than 5,000 people” in attendance.

“It’s almost time for Trump to speak here in Georgia and there’s probably no more than 5,000 people here, the smallest Trump rally I’ve ever covered here,” Fowler tweeted. “Way less” than Trump’s 2021 rally in Perry, Ga. “(Closer to 10k) and nowhere close to 2020’s 20-30k+ #gapol.”

But Trump spokeswoman Liz Harrington replied Sunday on social media, “FAKE NEWS! Massive crowd in Georgia last night, with estimates between 25,000 and 35,000 people. Fake news @stphnfwlr doesn’t know what he’s talking about!”

Trump himself also responded, via Harrington.

“We had a massive crowd last night in Georgia, but as usual, the Fake News Media absolutely refuses to show it. People are estimating 25,000 to 35,000 people, but our record so far is Texas with 87,000 people with 50,000 being turned away. This is really fun!” he said.

But, according to the Banks County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page, there were 17,000 attendees at the Saturday rally, Just the News reported.

The outlet continued:

Video footage captured by Real America’s Voice shows a large crowd at the moment the rally started.

Georgia Public Broadcasting receives money from federal and state taxpayers as well as private donors. A 2017 article in the Atlanta Constitution-Journal estimated GPB got a little more over 50 percent of its funding from taxpayers.

The story about the rally, titled “Trump’s Republican revenge tour falters in Georgia,” written by Fowler and Riley Bunch, at times reads more like an opinion piece.

The reporters noted, “Three separate counts of the [2022] election, including a full hand count risk-limiting audit, confirmed that President Joe Biden narrowly defeated Trump more than 500 days ago, but Georgia is a state that he has remained obsessed with seeking revenge on those who wronged him.”

Near the end of the piece, the reporters claimed there was a “crowd of around 5,000.”

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