A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Martial Law Isn’t ‘Imminent’

Martial Law Isn’t ‘Imminent’

Viral social media posts and videos have falsely claimed that “martial law [is] imminent” in the U.S. Those bogus reports are being pushed in some cases by those who sell emergency and survivalist products.

Viral Post Twists Biden’s Words About VP Nominee

Viral Post Twists Biden’s Words About VP Nominee

A viral social media post wrongly states that former Vice President Joe Biden told donors “he will not be president for very long” if elected. Biden merely said that he would seek an experienced vice presidential running mate who would be prepared to step into the presidency “if something happened.” 

False Claim of Congressional Pay Raises in Stimulus Bill

False Claim of Congressional Pay Raises in Stimulus Bill

Facebook posts falsely claim that House Democrats included $25 million to boost their own salaries in their proposal for the coronavirus-related stimulus package. That funding is not for legislators’ pay increases; it’s also in the bill being advanced by the Republican-controlled Senate.

Posts Distort Facts on Coronavirus Air Transmission, Masks

Posts Distort Facts on Coronavirus Air Transmission, Masks

Facebook posts make the unsubstantiated suggestion that the novel coronavirus is infectious in the air for “8 hrs,” and falsely claim that “everyone is required to wear mask everywhere!” There is also no requirement for healthy people to wear masks; experts say health care workers need them most.

2020 Census Not Tied to Coronavirus Relief Payments

2020 Census Not Tied to Coronavirus Relief Payments

The Trump administration and Congress are still negotiating a coronavirus economic stimulus package that will provide direct payments to some Americans. But this much is clear: eligibility will not depend on whether Americans respond to the 2020 census, as recent social media posts claim.

Article Misquotes Clyburn on Ending Democratic Primary

Article Misquotes Clyburn on Ending Democratic Primary

Rep. James Clyburn has called on the Democratic National Committee to cancel presidential primary debates to avoid damaging attacks on the eventual nominee. Clyburn did not say, as a conservative website falsely claimed, that he wanted to protect Joe Biden “from saying something that he ‘cannot overcome.'”

Death Quote Wrongly Attributed to Trump

Death Quote Wrongly Attributed to Trump

Social media posts are spreading a quote falsely attributed to President Donald Trump about the coronavirus. He didn’t say, “People are dying who have never died before.” But Ernest Hemingway did.

False Claim That Pelosi Withheld Coronavirus Funds Over Abortion

False Claim That Pelosi Withheld Coronavirus Funds Over Abortion

A viral Facebook post falsely claims that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi “wouldn’t release 8.5 billion for Coronavirus without abortion funding.” A House bill providing $8.3 billion in relief was already signed into law. The “abortion funding” claim is a distortion of a separate debate over a different bill.

Trump Didn’t Tweet Threat to Withhold Relief from Critics

Trump Didn’t Tweet Threat to Withhold Relief from Critics

Facebook and Instagram users are sharing a fake tweet attributed to President Donald Trump that suggests the president’s critics won’t get direct government payments to ease the financial burden of the coronavirus pandemic.

Prank Posts Mislead on Direct Government Payments for Coronavirus

Prank Posts Mislead on Direct Government Payments for Coronavirus

The Trump administration has proposed providing direct payments to some U.S. citizens, beginning April 6, to blunt the economic impact of the coronavirus. But a prank post circulating on Facebook falsely states that the government is sending out checks every week and claim forms are already available.