Are Democratic Legislators ‘Giddy’ Over COVID-19 Economic Fallout?

A classic example of what's called "copypasta" spreading unfounded rumors on social media.

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copypasta
Image via Getty Images

Claim

An anonymous person witnessed Democratic legislators in Washington, D.C., "giddy" over the economic fallout during the COVID-19 coronavirus disease pandemic.

Rating

Origin

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In early May 2020, Facebook users began sharing a specimen of what is known as “copypasta,” which can generally be described as text that is copied then pasted and shared across internet platforms, on the topic of the COVID-19 coronavirus disease pandemic.

The text block purported to be from a person claiming to have personal knowledge that Democratic lawmakers in Congress were “giddy” over the economic impacts of the pandemic. The message begans, “Spoke with a friend of mine who works in DC.”

Here is an example of the message, with the Facebook user’s name cropped out for privacy purposes:

Some version of the text shared above included a note that it was copied and pasted from a person named Rick Wilson, although we were unable to locate a person by that name who posted the text.

It bears mentioning that the U.S. House of Representatives, lead by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, left the Capitol on March 27, 2020, and as of this writing have not returned, following the advice of an attending physician.

The U.S. Senate, meanwhile, returned to the Capitol on May 4 after a five-week hiatus. And the copypasta, as shown in the screen shot above, has been circulating on Facebook at least as early as May 4.

The copypasta has also appeared on Twitter and random websites, but never directly attributing the original source nor the “friend” that witnessed the alleged events and discussions.

Given the lack of evidence provided and the fact that the text has been copied and pasted or shared by hundreds of people with no connection to it, this appears to be little more than a social media hoax. We therefore rate it “False.”

  • Published
Sources

Volz, Dustin. “Lawmakers Leave Washington Without Renewing Expired Surveillance Powers.”
  The Wall Street Journal. 27 March 2020.

Snell, Kelsey. “House Cancels Plans To Return To Washington On May 4, While Senate Preps For Session.”
  NPR. 28 April 2020.