Kellyanne Conway: WH spokesman gave 'alternative facts' on inauguration crowd

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Kellyanne Conway, Counselor to President Donald Trump, said the White House press secretary gave "alternative facts" when he inaccurately described the inauguration crowd as "the largest ever" during his first appearance before the press this weekend.

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer gathered the press to deliver a five-minute statement Saturday in which he issued multiple falsehoods, declaring erroneously the number of people that used the D.C. metro on Friday, that there was a change in security measures this year and that "this was the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration, period, both in person and around the globe."

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President Donald Trump's inaugural parade
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President Donald Trump's inaugural parade

U.S. President Donald Trump, first lady Melania Trump and son Barron walk during the inaugural parade from the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2017.

(REUTERS/Pool)

Washington D.C. motorcycle police lead the inaugural parade for U.S. President Donald Trump after he was sworn in at the Capitol (background) in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2017.

(REUTERS/Joshua Roberts)

U.S. President Donald Trump (R) waves to supporters as he walks the parade route with first lady Melania Trump during the Inaugural Parade on January 20, 2017 in Washington, DC. Donald J. Trump was sworn in today as the 45th president of the United States.

(Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

The family of US President Donald Trump arrives at the reviewing stand at the White House in Washington, DC, on January 20, 2107 following swearing-in ceremonies on Capitol Hill earlier today. From (L-R): son Barron, son Eric and wife Lara, daughters Ivanka and Tiffany and daughter-in-law Vanessa (extreme R).

(JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)

Newly inaugurated U.S. Vice President Mike Pence looks out the window of his limousine during the inauguration parade in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2017.

(REUTERS/Joshua Roberts)

The U.S. Army band "Pershing's Own" marches in the parade carrying U.S. President Donald Trump following his inauguration in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2017.

(REUTERS/Joshua Roberts)

U.S. President Donald Trump waves as he and his wife Melania walk during the inaugural Parade in Washington, January 20, 2017. Donald Trump was sworn in earlier as the 45th President of the United States.

(REUTERS/Lucas Jackson)

U.S. President Donald Trump waves from inside his limousine as he participates in the inaugural parade after his swearing in at the Capitol in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2017.

(REUTERS/Joshua Roberts)

Ivanka Trump walks with her son Theo during the inaugural parade in Washington, DC, on January 20, 2107.� US President Donald Trump on Friday stepped out of his limousine along the inaugural parade route, briefly walking on Pennsylvania Avenue and waving to supporters with his wife Melania and young son Barron. Earlier, the president drove past a crowd of protesters chanting anti-Trump slogans and waving banners.

(DOMINICK REUTER/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S. President Donald Trump, first lady Melania Trump and son Barron walk during the inaugural parade from the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2017.

(REUTERS/Pool)

US President Donald Trump stands with First Lady Melania Trump at the Capitol Building before departing for the parade after Trump is sworn in on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. on January 20, 2017.

(REUTERS/John Angelillo/Pool)

Supporters cheer as the presidential limousine drives up Pennsylvania Avenue to the White House surrounded by security detail after inauguration ceremonies for US President Donald Trump on January 20, 2017 in Washington,

(JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S. President Donald Trump waves to supporters as he walks the parade route with first lady Melania Trump and son Barron Trump past the main reviewing stand in front of the White House during the Inaugural Parade on January 20, 2017 in Washington, DC. Donald J. Trump was sworn in today as the 45th president of the United States.

(Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

US President Donald Trump walks his wife Melania surrounded by Secret Service officers outside the White House as the presidential inaugural parade winds through the nation's capital on January 20, 2017 in Washington, DC.

(TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)

Marchers take part in the inaugural parade of U.S. President Donald Trump in Washington, January 20, 2017. Donald Trump was sworn in as 45th President of the United States.

(REUTERS/Lucas Jackson)

The family of US President Donald Trump arrives at the reviewing stand at the White House in Washington, DC, on January 20, 2107 following swearing-in ceremonies on Capitol Hill earlier today. From (L-R): First Lady Melania Trump, son Barron, son Eric and wife Lara, daughters Ivanka and Tiffany and daughter-in-law Vanessa (extreme R).

(JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S. President Donald Trump's Housing and Urban Development Secretary nominee Ben Carson arrives to take his seat for the inaugural parade in Washington, January 20, 2017. Donald Trump was sworn in as 45th President of the United States.

(REUTERS/Lucas Jackson)

US Vice President Mike Pence and his wife Karen wave as they arrive in front of the White House for the presidential inaugural parade on January 20, 2017 in Washington, DC.

(NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images)

Former Texas Governor Rick Perry arrives for the presidential inaugural parade in front of the White House on January 20, 2017, in Washington, DC. Donald Trump was sworn in as the 45th president of the United States.

(NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images)

A view of atmosphere at the Presidential Inaugural Parade on January 20, 2017 in Washington, DC.

(Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images)

Participants march in period costume during the inaugural parade following U.S. President Donald Trump's swearing in at the Capitol in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2017.

(REUTERS/Joshua Roberts)

Newly inaugurated U.S. President Donald Trump salutes as he presides over a military parade during Trump's swearing ceremony in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2017.

(REUTERS/Mike Segar)

A view of atmosphere at the Presidential Inaugural Parade on January 20, 2017 in Washington, DC.

(Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images)

US Defense Secretary nominee James Mattis arrives for the presidential inaugural parade in front of the White House on January 20, 2017, in Washington, DC. Donald Trump was sworn in as the 45th president of the Uniited States.

(NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images)

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"These attempts to lessen the enthusiasm of the inauguration are shameful and wrong," Spicer said.

Crowd size experts told the New York Times they estimated Trump's audience at fewer than 200,000 people, and side-by-side photographs showed the stark contrast between the comparatively sparse crowd for Trump's inauguration and the record-setting crowd for Obama's first.

Asked why Spicer used his first appearance before the press to dispute a minimal issue like the inauguration crowd size, and why he used falsehoods to do so, Conway pushed back.

"You're saying it's a falsehood and Sean Spicer, our press secretary, gave alternative facts to that," she said.

She went on to insist: "I don't think you can prove those numbers one way or another. There's no way to quantify crowd numbers."

Conway also suggested Todd's insistence on asking why Spicer delivered a demonstrably false statement could affect the White House's treatment of the media.

"If we're going to keep referring to the press secretary in those types of terms I think we're going to have to rethink our relationship here," she said.

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