A roundup of some of the most popular, but completely untrue, headlines of the week. None of these stories are legit, even though they were shared widely on social media. The Associated Press checked these out; here are the real facts:
NOT REAL: Trump Just Ended Obama’s Vacation Scam And Sent Him A Bill You Have To See To Believe
THE FACTS: This story claims President Donald Trump has cut off more than $2 billion earmarked for funding of former President Barack Obama’s vacations through 2036. The story cites the source of the money as the Office of Presidential Visits and Vacations, which doesn’t exist. Since leaving office in January, Obama has vacationed in California, the British Virgin Islands and Tahiti. The story originated with thelastlineofdefense.org, an admitted hoax site.
NOT REAL: NASA Confirms Earth Will Experience 15 Days Of Darkness In November 2017
THE FACTS: The sun will continue to shine on the world later this year, despite the claims in several stories circulating on social media. The stories cite a complicated interaction between Venus and Jupiter as the cause for the impending darkness. They say NASA Administrator Charles Bolden has sent the White House a 1,000-page paper on the topic. Bolden resigned when Trump took office. The stories have been circulating since at least 2015, with varying dates for the nonexistent blackout.
NOT REAL: Furious Chelsea Clinton Thrown To The Floor And Handcuffed After Senator Lindsay Scandal Linked To Clinton Foundation
THE FACTS: Not only was Chelsea Clinton not thrown to the floor and handcuffed, the New Jersey senator referred to in this story from thelastlineofdefense.org doesn’t exist. An official list of all senators in U.S. history reveals only one with the last name of Lindsay; he represented Kentucky for about two weeks in 1893. Cory Booker and Robert Menendez represent New Jersey in the U.S. Senate. Nevertheless, the story is just one of several involving Clinton that refers to the nonexistent Sen. Lindsay.
NOT REAL: Cannibals Arrested In Florida Claim Eating Human Flesh Cures Diabetes and Depression
THE FACTS: A satire site, The Miami Gazette, published a widely shared piece with mugshots of three men. It quotes police in Vernal Heights, Florida, as saying the men were found eating human remains in a basement and saying that cannibalism helped cure their illnesses. Vernal Heights is not one of Florida’s more than 200 municipalities. And the photograph of a man identified as the town’s police chief comes from a Greek stock photo site.
NOT REAL: Democrat Maxine Waters Has Shown Up To Only 10% Of Congressional Meetings For 35 YEARS
THE FACTS: The sole evidence offered for the California congresswoman’s attendance record is a post by a Reddit user. According to GovTrack, which keeps a record of lawmakers’ voting habits, Waters has an attendance mark of more than 92 percent for roll call votes since coming to Washington in 1991. Waters made headlines earlier this year during a public tussle with now-fired Fox News host Bill O’Reilly.
This weekly fixture is part of The Associated Press’ ongoing efforts to fact-check claims in suspected false news stories.