Social Security funds cannot be misappropriated to pay for impeachment
The claim: Nancy Pelosi moved billions from social insurance to cover impeachment costs
Shortly after the The Senate acquitted former President Donald Trump for the second time, a story went viral claiming that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., had embezzled billions from Social Security insurance to cover impeachment costs.
The February 14 Facebook Publish, with over 500 shares, appears as a screenshot of an alleged fact-checking article titled “FACT CHECK: Yes, Nancy Pelosi has moved billions of ISS to cover the costs of setting up. charge. “
The screenshot is dated January 21 and features an image of Pelosi speaking with reporters. The user captioned the post: “This money belongs to the United States, active, retired and disabled American citizens !! NOW who’s going to do something !! How can we do anything !!
USA TODAY has contacted the user for comment.
Checking the facts: Masks encouraged on federal lands if distancing is not possible
Claim of satirical origin
The article included in the post is from January 2020 story which was posted on Freedom Fictions, a satirical fact-checking news site that is an affiliate of America’s last line of defense.
America’s Last Line of Defense is a satirical network that publishes fictional stories, according to its website.
“Everything on this website is fiction. It is not a lie and it is not fake news because it is not real. If you believe it is real you should get yourself examined for it. head, “reads the” About Us “page of Freedom Fictions. . “Any similarities between the sheer fantasy of this site and actual people, places and events are purely coincidental, and all images should be considered altered and satirical. See above if you are still having a problem with this satire. “
The full version of the satirical article states that Pelosi “would in no way be able to pull off such a ridiculous move” and that $ 2.4 billion was “randomly invented to appear big”. The story continues: “At Freedom Fictions, we hold this story to be true because we are also part of America’s Last Line of Defense, and honestly, if it’s in the article, and you still can’t tell that that’s satire, you need a hit. “
A bold headline at the top of Freedom Fictions reads, “Fake News Fact-checkers Check Fake News” with a bold satire warning. The story is categorized as ‘JUNK NEWS’ FACT CHECK.
Christopher Blair, the creator of America’s Last Line of Defense, formerly says USA TODAY that his articles have “zero in common with reality”. False complaints which originated in a satire on America’s last line of defense have already been debunked.
Checking the facts: Articles use 2012 photo of Magic Johnson to falsely claim he donated blood
Not possible for Pelosi to embezzle social security money
Alex Lawson, Executive Director of Social Security Works, says WUSA9 in 2020 – when the same claim went viral after Trump’s first impeachment trial – that it would be impossible for Pelosi to withdraw money from Social Security funds.
“The law is really clear here that the premiums that we pay to Social Security can only be used for the benefits and the administration of the services to provide those benefits,” he said, adding that the obligations of the social security are “meticulously managed” and overseen by a board of directors.
The legislative costs of impeachment are taken out of funds allocated to Congress for the performance of its duties, and while the bill for compensation for House members and staff does add up, it is a ” extremely small portion of the overall federal budget, “Yahoo! Finance reported.
USA TODAY has contacted the Social Security Administration for further comment.
Our rating: False
The claim that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi took billions from the Social Security Administration to cover impeachment costs is FALSE, our research shows. The claim stems from an article explicitly labeled as satire and the impeachment costs are covered by the operations of Congress.
Our sources of fact-checking:
- Fictions of freedom, “FACT CHECK: Yes, Nancy Pelosi moved billions from SSI to cover prosecution costs“
- America’s last line of defense, About Us
- UNITED STATES TODAY, December 15 “Fact Check: A Fake Anti-Christmas Quote Attributed To Kamala Harris Started As A Satire“
- USA TODAY, August 25, 2020, “Fact Check: Viral Claim About Nancy Pelosi And Overseas Military Voters False, Comes From Satire Site“
- WUSA9, November 18, 2019, “CHECK: No, Nancy Pelosi did not embezzle billions from Social Security to fund Trump impeachment hearings
- Yahoo! Finances, January 3, 2020, “Here’s how much of your taxes were spent on impeachment last year“
Thank you for supporting our journalism. You can Subscribe to our print edition, ad-free app, or e-journal replica here.
Our fact-checking work is supported in part by a grant from Facebook.