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A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Baby Formula Shortage Fuels Misleading Partisan Claims

Baby Formula Shortage Fuels Misleading Partisan Claims

A shortage of baby formula has provoked misleading partisan claims that suggest President Joe Biden is responsible for the “bare shelves.” But the shortage has been caused by a recall and plant shutdown by a major manufacturer and ongoing supply-chain issues due to the pandemic.

Posts Misattribute Phrase ‘Domestic Supply of Infants’ in Draft Opinion on Abortion

Posts Misattribute Phrase ‘Domestic Supply of Infants’ in Draft Opinion on Abortion

In a footnote of a draft opinion on abortion access, Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito quoted from a 2008 government report on the demand for adoption in the U.S., which used the phrase, “domestic supply of infants.” Posts on social media critical of the opinion have misleadingly suggested that Alito himself came up with the phrase.

Zelensky and Soros Aren’t Cousins, Contrary to Social Media Claim

Zelensky and Soros Aren’t Cousins, Contrary to Social Media Claim

Conspiracy theories aimed at Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky have been circulating on social media since Russia invaded Ukraine in February. One recent example, falsely attributed to a “Pentagon official,” is the unfounded claim that Zelensky is the cousin of billionaire philanthropist George Soros.

Former Presidents Are Not Allowed to Take Home Official Records

Former Presidents Are Not Allowed to Take Home Official Records

The National Archives recovered 15 boxes of materials from former President Donald Trump’s time in office. Tom Fitton, president of Judicial Watch, claimed that the law allowed Trump to “take documents when he left the White House.” But a former president isn’t allowed to take possession of official records, which Trump has said these are.

Social Media Posts Misrepresent Old Biden Tweet on Travel Ban

Social Media Posts Misrepresent Old Biden Tweet on Travel Ban

President Joe Biden restricted travel from eight African nations on Nov. 26 to slow the spread of the omicron variant. Conservative commentators have misleadingly cited a Biden tweet from last year to claim he was critical of “the same travel ban” implemented by then-President Donald Trump. But that tweet was about a Trump immigration order directed at predominantly Muslim countries.

Viral Post Misrepresents Facts in Rittenhouse Trial

Viral Post Misrepresents Facts in Rittenhouse Trial

Kyle Rittenhouse said that he went to Kenosha, Wisconsin, to defend a car dealership during protests against police brutality in August 2020. He was not there to defend his grandparents’ gas station, as a viral social media post falsely claims. He was not related to the family that owns the car dealership.

White House and HHS Employees Aren’t ‘Exempt’ from Vaccine Mandate

White House and HHS Employees Aren’t ‘Exempt’ from Vaccine Mandate

While some specifics of President Joe Biden’s COVID-19 vaccine mandates haven’t been determined, misleading claims about who will be “exempt” have circulated online. Employees at the White House and in agencies within the Department of Health and Human Services are subject to Biden’s executive order requiring federal employees to be vaccinated.

Experts: No Link Between COVID-19 Vaccines and Erectile Dysfunction

Experts: No Link Between COVID-19 Vaccines and Erectile Dysfunction

Public health officials around the world have explained that erectile dysfunction is not a side effect of COVID-19 vaccines, but a viral tweet from rapper Nicki Minaj has spread the unfounded claim that it is. There is no evidence to support that claim.

Social Media Posts Draw Unsupported Conclusion on Afghan Helicopter Video

Social Media Posts Draw Unsupported Conclusion on Afghan Helicopter Video

Afghan journalists report that a video of a person suspended from a helicopter shows an operation in which the person was trying to change a flag. But critics of President Joe Biden have used the footage to claim the Taliban used U.S. equipment for a “hanging.” One person who shared the claim, Sen. Ted Cruz, later deleted his tweet, saying it “may be inaccurate.”