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A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Viral Chart Distorts Human Trafficking Statistics

Viral Chart Distorts Human Trafficking Statistics

A popular bar graph on social media claims to show that the number of human trafficking arrests skyrocketed under President Donald Trump, compared to those under former President Barack Obama. But the chart misleads by using cherry-picked and, in some cases, faulty numbers.

Old Photo Shows Obama, Fauci at U.S. Facility — Not ‘Wuhan Lab’

Old Photo Shows Obama, Fauci at U.S. Facility — Not ‘Wuhan Lab’

An image circulating on social media claims to show former President Barack Obama, Dr. Anthony Fauci and Melinda Gates at the “Wuhan lab in 2015.” The photo was actually taken at the National Institutes of Health campus in Maryland — and Melinda Gates is not in the picture.

Trump’s False Military Equipment Claim

Trump’s False Military Equipment Claim

President Donald Trump has falsely claimed his administration invested “$2.5 trillion in all of the greatest equipment in the world” for the military. That’s approximately the total for defense budgets from 2017 to 2020, but the cost of purchasing new military equipment was 20% of that.

Viral Post Falsely Attributes ‘Shadow Government’ Claim to Krauthammer

Viral Post Falsely Attributes ‘Shadow Government’ Claim to Krauthammer

A Christian blogger writing for The Daily Jot accused former President Barack Obama in 2017 of running a “shadow government.” The blog post has been recirculating lately on social media, but it is falsely attributed to the late Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist Charles Krauthammer.

Trump Wrong on Obama-Biden Actions on Policing

Trump Wrong on Obama-Biden Actions on Policing

In signing an executive order on policing issues, President Donald Trump falsely claimed former President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden “never even tried to fix this during their eight-year period.” The Obama administration took several steps to address police violence and community trust issues, some of which the Trump administration has dialed back.

Obama’s Criticism Didn’t Set a Presidential Precedent

Obama’s Criticism Didn’t Set a Presidential Precedent

A meme circulating on Facebook — and retweeted by President Donald Trump — falsely claims former President Barack Obama is the “first ex-president to speak against [his] successor.” Actually, many U.S. leaders criticized those who followed them into the White House.

Trump Twists Record on Inspectors General

Trump Twists Record on Inspectors General

Defending his decision to fire a fourth inspector general this year, President Donald Trump has misleadingly compared his record to past presidents, claiming, “I think every president has gotten rid of probably more than I have.”

Treason Conviction Wouldn’t Erase Presidential Actions

Treason Conviction Wouldn’t Erase Presidential Actions

Social media posts targeting former President Barack Obama suggest he will be tried for “treason” and falsely claim that if convicted his title would be “stripped away” along with all his presidential actions.  There’s no support for the claim he’ll be tried for treason, and it’s untrue that any former president’s actions would be undone after such a conviction.

Flawed Comparison on Coronavirus, H1N1 Emergency Timelines

Flawed Comparison on Coronavirus, H1N1 Emergency Timelines

Facebook posts falsely claim that it “took [President Barack] Obama ‘millions infected and over 1,000 deaths’ to declare the H1N1 flu a health emergency,” but President Donald Trump “declared a health emergency” before the first coronavirus death. In reality, both administrations declared public health emergencies before the first reported deaths.