FACT CHECK: Doctored Photo Disparages Michelle Obama’s Appearance

Brad Sylvester | Fact Check Editor

A viral Facebook post shared over 2,500 times claims to show a photograph of former First Lady Michelle Obama with more masculine features.

Verdict: False

The image is a doctored version of a photo that Barack Obama shared on Twitter in January 2019.

Fact Check:

Since her husband became president in 2008, Michelle Obama has been the subject of baseless claims that she is secretly transgender, according to the International Business Times. Multiple Facebook users recently shared an old photo of the Obamas in an attempt to suggest the same thing.

“No words needed. A photo says a million things,” reads one such post. “More proof of Michelle being Michael.” (RELATED: Were Barack And Michelle Obama Pictured Posing With Pro-Trump T-Shirts?)

The photo has been digitally manipulated. Barack Obama shared the original picture on his Twitter account in January 2019 with a caption that says, “I knew it way back then and I’m absolutely convinced of it today – you’re one of a kind, @MichelleObama. Happy Birthday!” Several news outlets, including The Hill, Daily Mail and Oprah Magazine, have featured the original photo in pieces about the couple.

In the doctored version, Michelle Obama’s head and neck have been widened to make her features appear more masculine, a comparison of the two images shows. The right side of her neck also seems to be warped.

Michelle Obama is often the target of misinformation online. Check Your Fact has debunked numerous false claims about her, including those that allege she once called country music “intellectually devoid” and President Donald Trump the “dumbest president in United States history.”

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Brad Sylvester

Fact Check Editor
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