This screenshot of a tweet from US Representative AOC is fake
As the United States prepared for its first major storm of the 2019 hurricane season, social media posts shared a screenshot of a seemingly viral tweet from New York Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez about electric cars being useful in the aftermath of a storm. The tweet is fabricated. There is no record of the tweet on the Democratic lawmaker’s Twitter account or in a database which tracks tweets deleted by US legislators. The Congresswoman denied tweeting the statement.
The screenshot was shared hundreds of times in the US and Canada on Twitter and Facebook since August 30, 2019. The supposed tweet by Ocasio-Cortez, or AOC as she is often called, reads: “I see people are rushing out to fill up their cars for this hurricane at the gas station This wouldn’t be an issue if they had electric cars. If the power is out for a week, how are they going to get gas? We need to start planning ahead and moving forward."
The Congresswoman who represents the Bronx and Queens in New York is a regular presence on social media with 5.3 million Twitter followers and 3.9 million Instagram followers. She is also a proponent of the Green New Deal, proposed legislation aiming to address climate change. But the tweet about electric cars is not authentic.
A search of Ocasio-Cortez’s Twitter account finds no evidence of the text.
It is also not found in this database managed by the non-profit journalism organization ProPublica, which records tweets deleted by US lawmakers.
On August 31, the Congresswoman responded to a Twitter user asking if the screenshot of the tweet was something she had tweeted with the response, “Nope.”
Nope.— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) August 31, 2019
With a genuine tweet, especially one shared 534,000 times, it should be easy to find retweets across Twitter, but in the case of this message, there only appears to be screenshots.
There are also visual cues that give away a fake screenshot of a tweet.
Tweets display the type of device from which they were sent, which for Ocasio-Cortez's official account was an iPhone. The fake tweet does not.
Tweets also display the time and then the date on which they were sent. The date is written: abbreviated name of the month, day, year. The false screenshot displayed the date before the time and wrote it day/month/year.
This content was also fact-checked by Snopes.