Fact Check

FALSE: Obama to Sign Executive Order Stripping Texas of Statehood Ahead of Jade Helm 15

Rumor: President Obama is set to strip Texas of Statehood ahead of the Jade Helm military exercises.

Published May 25, 2015

Claim:   President Obama is planning to strip Texas of statehood in advance of the Jade Helm military exercise.


Example: [Collected via e-mail, May 2015]

Is this true that Texas will no longer be a state of US? Beginning July 1st, the Lone Star nation-state will be solely responsible for its survival and prosperity.

Origins:   On 23 May 2015, the web site Real News Right Now published an article reporting that President Obama was planning to strip Texas of its statehood just ahead of a military exercise known as Jade Helm:

President Obama will issue an executive order next week stripping Texas of statehood while creating a sovereign nation-state between the U.S. and Mexico, a White House official speaking on condition of anonymity told The Washington Post today. Effective July 1st, the laws governing the United States, including the U.S. Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and, additionally, the Geneva Conventions, will no longer apply to Texas or its residents.

The order is set to become law just days ahead of what the Obama administration and the Pentagon are calling a large-scale training exercise. Dubbed 'Jade Helm 15,' the operation involves several states, including Texas, and consists of roughly 1,200 soldiers and seamen from U.S. Army Special Operations Command, Navy SEALs, and Air Force special operations forces.

There is no truth to the above-quoted story. The web site Real News Right Now is just one of many fake news sites currently operating on the Internet, one which does not contain a disclaimer stating the true nature of the site. In fact, the web site's "About Section" boasts of the many journalistic accomplishments of its lead author, R. Hobbus J.D. This too, of course, is a work of fiction:

R. Hobbus J.D. is an internationally acclaimed independent investigative journalist specializing in international politics, health, business, science, conflict resolution, history, geography, mathematics, social issues, feminism, space travel, civil rights, human rights, animal rights, fashion, film, astronomy, classic literature, religion, biology, paranormal activity, the occult, physics, psychology, and creative writing. He has appeared in countless publications including Time Magazine, Newsweek, Playboy, The Economist, The New York Times, Mad Magazine, Hustler, Guns & Ammo, People, Maxim Magazine, Highlights, The 9/11 Commission Report, The New Yorker, Bon Appetite, Rolling Stone, Car & Driver, Soldier of Fortune, Elle, Nintendo Power, National Geographic, and many more. He has received numerous awards for his work including the prestigious Stephen Glass Distinction in Journalistic Integrity (2011), The Oscar Mayer Award for Journalistic Excellence (2003), three Nobel Peace Prize nominations, one Pulitzer in Investigative Reporting (1998), and two Pulitzer Prizes in Commentary (1996, 2008). He resides comfortably in his modest home overlooking the coast of Nantucket surrounded by his wife and twelve cats.

In addition to the fact that an "R. Hobbus J.D." has never been nominated, awarded, or considered for any of the aforementioned awards, the above-quoted section contains several clues about the true intent of Real News Right Now. For instance, while the Stephen Glass Distinction in Journalistic Integrity may sound like a real award, author Stephen Glass is famous for making up a number of his news articles.

Last updated:   12 July 2015

David Mikkelson founded the site now known as snopes.com back in 1994.