US President Donald Trump on Thursday called out the New York Times in a tweet, claiming the newspaper got "caught in a big lie" over photos it posted of Patriots that visited the White House on Wednesday.
"Failing @nytimes, which has been calling me wrong for two years, just got caught in a big lie concerning New England Patriots visit to W.H.," Trump tweeted.
A reported 34 members of the Patriots visited the Trump White House on Wednesday in celebration of winning Super Bowl 51.
Later on Wednesday, the Times tweeted photos of the of Patriots at the White House celebrating their Super Bowl victory in 2015 vs. 2017. The photos showed an apparent discrepancy in turnout for the two visits, the first of which came during President Barack Obama's tenure.
— NYT Sports (@NYTSports) April 19, 2017
The Patriots clapped back on Twitter, saying the tweets lacked context.
These photos lack context. Facts: In 2015, over 40 football staff were on the stairs. In 2017, they were seated on the South Lawn. https://t.co/iIYtV0hR6Y
— New England Patriots (@Patriots) April 20, 2017
The Times clarified later Wednesday that the Patriots said fewer players had attended the White House event in 2017 but that the size of the delegations were roughly the same.
On Wednesday, the Patriots were missing several faces for several reasons. Quarterback Tom Brady announced on Wednesday morning that he wouldn't be in attendance due to "personal family matters." Others, like Martellus Bennett and Devin McCourty, did not go for political reasons, while CSN New England reported that some players simply could not make it due to prior obligations.
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