Eric Trump repeats false claim that his father was first US president in history not to start a war

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Eric Trump reupped the old mistruth that his father was the first president in US history to not start a war while in office.

This false statement, which became so widely repeated in 2021 it prompted multiple news outlets to conduct fact-checks disproving the claim, was parroted by the former president’s son during a Wednesday appearance on Newsmax.

“He’s anti-war … he didn’t want to go to war,” Eric Trump told host Eric Bolling of his father. “He’s the first president in the United States history that didn’t start a war.”

In 2021, Reuters and several other news outlets produced fact-checks that would dismantle this unfounded claim that got picked up by the president’s other son, Donald Trump Jr, and multiple other misinformed Trump-loyalists.

For Reuters, which acknowledged that defining when a war begins and ends is muddying business in itself, it found that even with the liberal cut-off of just looking at post-Second World War conflicts, there are nine presidents in US history that have not initiated a war.

Between 1945 and 2022, Mr Trump joins a list of eight other commanders in chief who did not enter a new conflict during their administration, including Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter, Gerald Ford, Richard Nixon, John F. Kennedy and Dwight D. Eisenhower.

The four of the 13 presidents since 1945 who have sent troops to fight in new foreign conflicts are Harry S Truman, Lyndon B Johnson, George H W Bush and George W Bush, who began the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the Gulf War and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, respectively.

Eric Trump’s latest mention of the false claim about his father came as he and Mr Bolling discussed the past week’s primaries and, more specifically, Rep Liz Cheney loss in the Wyoming GOP primary to Trump-backed Harriet Hageman.

The one-term president’s son declared that the Republican Party should officially rebrand to be called the “Trump party” after his father’s successes in endorsing candidates with winning races.

“It’s not even the Republican party, I’d say it’s actually the Trump party,” Eric Trump said. According to Business Insider, who cited Ballotpedia’s counting, the elder Trump’s endorsement record is currently at 92 per cent, with a grand total of 183 victories and 17 defeats.

“My father has really redefined what the party is, how the party speaks to its constituents,” he added.

In Wyoming on Tuesday, Trump-backed candidate Ms Hageman took home a W for the GOP primary in her state and will now move onto the general election in November in a state that has been safely touted as a red state, with it not being won by a Democrat since Lyndon B Johnson in 1964.

Elsewhere this week, Trump-backed challenger Kelly Tshibaka made her way to advance to the general election in Alaska’s Senate race against her fellow GOP rival Sen Lisa Murkowski and the one-term president’s other Alaskan bet, former governor Sarah Palin, also made it past the post in her contest for the sole House seat alongside three other candidates.

Alaska this year started a new open primaries process, which will culminate in a ranked-choice voting process.