Colorado Republicans did their part in spreading fake news and/or falsehoods on Facebook during the election, as Charles Buchanan has been pointing out on the Colorado Times Recorder.
Below, I’ve pulled together a few examples from Buchanan’s posts (See more here.), and they raise the question of whether public officials, as well as partisan entities, will be more careful, going forward, about fact checking information before they post it on Facebook.
In the coming months, I’ll check in with public officials, Republican or Democrat, if they’ve posted or shared fake news or falsehoods on Facebook.
We’ll see if they have sufficient respect for public discourse to remove their inaccurate information, once it’s been proven false.
Here are recent examples, from Buchanan’s work:
In August, Colorado State Sen. Laura Woods (R-Arvada), who lost her seat to Democrat Rachel Zenzinger, shared a false meme that vaccines causes autism.
In August, the Gunnison County Republican Party apparenlty shared a meme quoting that Diane Feinstein as saying, “When the gunman realizes that nobody else is armed, he will lay down his weapons and turn himself in…that’s just human nature.” Feinstein did not say that.
Failed GOP state house candidate Raymond Garcia, who seemed outright averse to fact checking his Facebook posts during the campaign, shared a meme stating that Hillary Clinton’s great-great uncle was hanged for horse stealing. This isn’t true.
GOP Vice Chair Derrick Wilburn shared a meme claiming that Obama’s Department of Justice would no longer use the word “felon,” so as not to hurt the feelings of criminals. In fact, this was not a department-wide policy but would only apply to those who’d served time and were released, in an effort to help them succeed.
In July, Saguache GOP Chair Richard Drake shared a meme with an alleged quote from Jimmy Carter stating, “The novelty of electing ‘the First Woman President of the United States’ should not outweigh our duty in electing an honest and ethical president.” Carter didn’t say this.
GOP U.S. House candidate Casper Stockham shared a meme falsely claiming that purple lights decorated the Obama White House when Prince died but was unchanged when “5 Dallas cops died.” In fact, the purple lighting never occurred.
Failed state house candidate Garcia also shared a meme on Facebook falsely claiming to picture a topless Hillary Clinton as a lesbian. It’s not Clinton.
Former vice chair of the Adams County Republican Party, John Sampson, shared a meme claiming to show Michelle Obama texting during the plede of allegiance. It’s not Obama.
In September, former State Rep. Robert Ramirez posted a meme falsely quoting Obama as saying, “Muslims Built the Very Foundation of our Nation.” This is also false. Obama never said it.
Please send me any examples of officials spreading fake news. We know there’s more where this came from.