Most U.S. intelligence agencies assess a spillover from an animal is most likely the origin of COVID-19, but recent news reports say the Energy Department now favors the lab-leak hypothesis. Online posts wrongly claim this means a lab origin has been confirmed.
Issues: COVID-19 pandemic
In Context: Laxalt’s Comments on Latino Businesses
Is the Pandemic ‘Over’? Biden Says So, But Scientists Say That’s Up for Debate
In a surprise moment in a “60 Minutes” interview, President Joe Biden said the COVID-19 pandemic “is over.” While he correctly acknowledged that the coronavirus was still a problem, epidemiologists say there’s no single agreed-upon definition for what constitutes the end of a pandemic — and some say we’re not there yet.
Commentator Ben Shapiro Didn’t Receive $20K in Federal Loan Forgiveness
Conservative commentator Ben Shapiro criticized the Biden administration’s decision to forgive some student loan debt. Liberal social media accounts then falsely claimed Shapiro had received a loan of about $20,000 that had been forgiven as part of the federal Paycheck Protection Program. Two other people with the same name had received PPP loans.
Stimulus Spending a Factor, But Far From Whole Story on Inflation
Navarro Falsely Links Fauci to Pandemic Origin
The U.S. indirectly funded some bat coronavirus research at a lab in Wuhan, China. But those experiments could not have led to the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, because the viruses used were very different. Yet former White House trade adviser Peter Navarro repeated a false claim that Dr. Anthony Fauci “killed a lot of people” by funding the lab.
Posts Spread Baseless Claims About Cause of Cargo Ship Backups
U.S. ports slowed by pandemic-induced labor and equipment shortages cannot keep up with Americans’ demand for imported goods, resulting in cargo ship backups on both coasts. But social media posts, without citing evidence, falsely claim the Biden administration is purposely “orchestrating” product shortages.