Video of expletive shouted at Biden in Pennsylvania is altered

A video circulating online purports to show a shop patron in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania cursing at Joe Biden during an April 2024 visit. But the clip is altered; it layers months-old audio from the US president's tour of a wildfire-ravaged town in Hawaii over unrelated footage of his campaign stop at a Sheetz convenience store.

"SEE IT: Woman to Joe Biden, 'Fuck you,' and 'Thanks for nothing.' WATCH," said Simon Ateba of the US-based Today News Africa in a now-deleted April 29, 2024 post on X.

The post included a video with the C-SPAN logo that appeared to show people insulting Biden as he visited a Sheetz location in Pittsburgh on April 17 to pick up sandwiches for construction workers.

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Screenshot from X taken April 29, 2024

Similar posts spread across X -- amplified by public figures such as Donald Trump supporter Juanita Broaddrick, who accused former US president Bill Clinton of rape decades ago. They circulated after Biden embarked on a three-day campaign trip to the battleground state of Pennsylvania.

But the clip is manipulated.

A keyword search for C-SPAN footage of Biden's Sheetz visit revealed Howard Mortman, the network's communications director, posted the original video to X and YouTube on April 17 (archived here and here).

The original footage does not include expletives or heckling. Instead, a reporter shouts a question about steel tariffs and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

"The steel tariffs, are you concerned that will hurt your relationship with Xi Jinping? Your new relationship with him," the reporter asked, to which Biden replied: "No."

The audio in the altered version of the clip comes from Biden's August 2023 visit to the state of Hawaii, where deadly wildfires left the historic town of Lahaina in charred ruin.

Keyword searches surfaced the corresponding video on the tabloid website TMZ (archived here). It shows onlookers giving the middle finger and shouting at the Democrat's presidential motorcade.

AFP contacted the White House for comment, but no response was forthcoming.

AFP has debunked other videos purporting to show people shouting at Biden here, here, here and here.

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