WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump’s press secretary is declaring that Trump’s inauguration had the largest audience in history “both in person and around the globe.”
Sean Spicer insists that, “This was the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration, period.”
Spicer offers no evidence to support the claim. It is not known how many people watched the ceremony on television around the globe. In the U.S., Nielsen estimates 31 million viewers watched TV coverage, but that’s less than Barack Obama’s and Ronald Reagan’s first inaugurations.
On the ground in Washington, crowds on Friday were noticeably smaller than those of some previous inaugurations.
Spicer convened reporters at the White House during Trump’s first full day in office to accuse them of engaging in “deliberately false reporting.” He’s claiming that photographs of the inauguration were intentionally framed in a way to minimize the crowd.
Photos of the National Mall make clear that the crowd did not extend to the Washington Monument, as it did for the 2009 inauguration of Barack Obama.