FACT CHECK: No, This Image Does Not Show Kamala Harris ‘Clearly Intoxicated’

Varun Hukeri | General Assignment & Analysis Reporter

An image shared on Facebook over 500 times purportedly shows Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris “clearly intoxicated” on Oct. 25 at an airport in Cleveland.

Verdict: False

The photo shows a screen grab of a video Harris posted on Twitter in November 2019 during a visit to Des Moines, Iowa. There is no evidence Harris was intoxicated in the video.

Fact Check:

The image purports to show Harris intoxicated on Oct. 25 at an unnamed airport in Cleveland, Ohio, before boarding a flight to Oshkosh, a town in Wisconsin. “Throwing up in the bushes & staggering aimlessly at the Cleveland airport was the last straw before staffers put Kamala Harris back in the plane and took off for Oshkosh,” the caption reads. “Onlookers claim the clearly intoxicated Harris was confrontational but too weak to put up much of a fight.”

It appears to be a screen grab taken at the roughly five-second mark of a video Harris posted to her personal Twitter account on Nov. 28, 2019. In the video, Harris greets several people while holding a basket before bending down to speak to a child. “Will you have a cookie?” she can be heard saying as she gives the boy a cookie from the basket.

Harris and her husband Douglas Emhoff traveled to Des Moines in November 2019 during the Democratic primary election campaign to celebrate Thanksgiving, according to the Des Moines Register. Harris attended the 2019 Turkey Trot in downtown Des Moines on Nov. 28 while her brother-in-law, Tony West, reportedly participated in the 5K run. Multiple people speaking to Harris in the video she uploaded to Twitter can be seen with “Turkey Trot” signs on their shirts, indicating that they were participants in the race. (RELATED: Did Kamala Harris Call American Churches ‘Propaganda Centers’?)

She does not appear in the video to be “clearly intoxicated” or “confrontational,” as suggested by some Facebook users. Multiple images captured by Zuma Press photographer Jack Kurtz depict Harris meeting with Turkey Trot participants and none appear to show her intoxicated, “throwing up in the bushes” or “staggering aimlessly.” Check Your Fact didn’t find any local or national news outlets reporting that Harris was intoxicated at the Turkey Trot or on that day.

Harris traveled to Michigan on Oct. 25 to make campaign stops in Detroit, Troy and Pontiac, local Fox affiliate WSMH reported. The previous day, she campaigned in Cleveland, per CNBC. Had the incident describes in the Facebook post occurred, it likely would have been noted in media reports, given the proximity of Election day.

Varun Hukeri

General Assignment & Analysis Reporter
Follow Varun on Twitter


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