White House mistakes satirical story about Donald Trump’s budget for real news

Loulla-Mae Eleftheriou-Smith
The President's budget was lambasted in the piece: Getty

A satirical story claiming Donald Trump’s first budget “makes perfect sense” has been mistaken for a real article and included in the White House’s online daily briefing.

The article, entitled ‘Trump’s budget makes perfect sense and will fix America, and I will tell you why,’ published on the Washington Post, was included as a link on the White House’s ‘1600 Daily’.

The briefing page carries news, events and updates from the White House, including a daily schedule for the President and links to news stories that generally favour the administration.

Written by columnist Alexandra Petri, the article stated: “This budget will make America a lean, mean fighting machine with bulging, rippling muscles and not an ounce of fat. America has been weak and soft for too long. BUT HOW WILL I SURVIVE ON THIS BUDGET? you may be wondering. I AM A HUMAN CHILD, NOT A COSTLY FIGHTER JET. You may not survive, but that is because you are SOFT and WEAK, something this budget is designed to eliminate.”

On the proposed 29 per cent cut to the State Department, Ms Petri wrote: “With the money we will save on these sad public servants, we will be able to buy lots of GUNS and F-35s and other cool things that go BOOM and POW and PEW PEW PEW.”

The article, which ends with the words, “RAW POWER! HARD RAW POWER GRRRRRR HISSS POW! It will be great,” was included in the news reports section of the 1600 Daily on 17 March. The link has since been removed, but screenshots of the mistake were tweeted by readers to Ms Petri.

Writing on Philly.com, Ms Petri described her article as “a piece composed almost entirely of onomatopoeic noises (PEW PEW! GRRRRRRRR!) typed out in all caps”.

She claimed there are two possible explanations for her piece being linked to in the 1600 Daily briefing; either the staff “read it and loved it,” or only read her headline.

“I was surprised as anyone to discover I was Real News. Here I thought that I was toiling away in the Dank Cesspool of the Mainstream Media, but all along I was a Trusted News Source, just like Breitbart.com!” she added.

The White House has been contacted for comment.

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