A couple weeks after the 2016 election, President-Elect Donald Trump tweeted this: "In addition to winning the Electoral College in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally."
The mainstream media scoffed and immediately set out to disprove his claim. And, of course, the MSM also galloped off to cover 2016 loser Jill Stein's effort to get a recount for Hillary Clinton, who had taken to her bed piled with cash to weep in solitude.
"Trump wrongly tells congressional leaders that millions of 'illegals' cost him the popular vote," said the Los Angeles Times. And there is one fact in that header: Trump lost the popular vote by 2,868,519, according to Dave Liep's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections.
Fast forward to today. The MSM is still trying to derail Trump on everything he does, but a new report has come out that shows Trump may well have been right in his claim.
JustFacts.com, an independent think tank, did some serious number crunching on immigration to the U.S. and said this about the 2008 election:
- the number of non-citizens in this poll, the margin of sampling error for their self-declared voting is ± 5 percentage points with at least 95% confidence.  
- the number of non-citizens in this poll who were in the database, the margin of sampling error for their undeclared voting is ± 8 percentage points with at least 95% confidence.  
- these study results and Census Bureau population estimates, 594,000 to 5.7 million non-citizens voted illegally in the 2008 election. 
See the report here for citations.
Thus, if that many illegals voted in 2008 -- up to 5.7 million -- then it's perfectly reasonable to think that as many -- or more -- voted in the 2016 election. Just Facts said that in 2012, 3.2 million to 5.6 million noncitizens were registered to vote -- and 1.2 million to 3.6 million of them cast ballots. Remember, Trump lost the popular vote by 2.8 million.
Said the Washington Times:
Just Facts President James D. Agresti and his team looked at data from an extensive Harvard/YouGov study that every two years questions a sample size of tens of thousands of voters. Some acknowledge they are noncitizens and are thus ineligible to vote.
Just Facts’ conclusions confront both sides in the illegal voting debate: those who say it happens a lot and those who say the problem nonexistent.
In one camp, there are groundbreaking studies by professors at Old Dominion University in Virginia who attempted to compile scientifically derived illegal voting numbers using the Harvard data, called the Cooperative Congressional Election Study.
On the other side are the professors who conducted the study and contended that “zero” noncitizens of about 18 million adults in the U.S. voted. The liberal mainstream media adopted this position and proclaimed the Old Dominion work was “debunked.”
The ODU professors, who stand by their work in the face of attacks from the left, concluded that in 2008 as few as 38,000 and as many as 2.8 million noncitizens voted.
Mr. Agresti’s analysis of the same polling data settled on much higher numbers. He estimated that as many as 7.9 million noncitizens were illegally registered that year and 594,000 to 5.7 million voted.
But the Huffington Post said the findings were "doubtful," and offered up its own math.
The analysis by the think tank Just Facts is based on Harvard/YouGov data, the same source of data for a 2014 study used to support President Donald Trump’s claim that millions voted illegally in the most recent election. Brian Schaffner, a political science professor at the University of Massachusetts Amherst who helps manage the data source the 2014 analysis was based on, debunked that analysis in November, saying it extrapolated based on answers from respondents that were likely errors.
James Agresti, the president of Just Facts, told The Washington Times the details of his analysis were “technical” but his results were based on a more conservative analysis and were more accurate than those of the 2014 study.
In 2012, Schaffner and his colleagues went back and re-interviewed the 121 people from the earlier study who said they voted in 2010 but weren’t citizens. Of those 121 people, 36 changed their answer and said they were, in fact, citizens. Of the 85 people who maintained they were non-citizens, researchers could not match a single one to a valid voter record.
In an email, Schaffner said the conclusion of Agresti’s study was highly doubtful and readers should be skeptical for the same reasons they should have doubted the study of the 2010 data.
“The most important is that the new study makes the same error as the old study in terms of ignoring measurement error on the question they use to identify supposed non-citizens when we have in fact demonstrated that many people answer that question incorrectly,” Schaffner wrote in an email.
The MSM, of course, has no intention of getting to the bottom of the story. In the bag for the Democrats, finding out the truth would likely anger the very people the Democrats are trying so hard to hang onto.
But that's not working very well: The party has lost all four of the special House elections this year -- while declaring each one was a "referendum on Trump."