Fact Check

Did Joe Biden Mistake Tampa for Minnesota?

An altered video circulated widely on social media appeared to show Biden making an embarrassing mistake.

Published Nov. 1, 2020

Joe Biden mistakenly greeted a crowd in Tampa, Florida, by saying, "Hello, Minnesota!"

One of the tropes President Donald Trump frequently used on the 2020 campaign trail was mocking his Democratic, Joe Biden, for supposedly misstating the name of whatever location he was speaking in, claiming that Biden frequently couldn't remember where he was and mistook one city for another.

Just days before the presidential election, social media users circulated a (since-removed) video that supposedly showed Biden making a campaign stop at a locale bearing signs identifying it as “Tampa, Florida" yet offering the audience the greeting "Hello, Minnesota":

Biden's being garbed in an overcoat was one of several clues that the video was manipulated and not shot in Tampa (where the temperature was in the high 70s and low 80s), however.

The backdrop behind Biden in the video was edited to remove the words “TEXT MN to 30330” and replace the, with "Tampa, Florida," and to change the state abbreviation from "MN" to "FL" on the sign visible on the front of the lectern. The unaltered clip shows that Biden was in fact speaking in Minnesota during an Oct. 30 event in St. Paul:

Biden had actually appeared in Tampa the previous day, Oct. 29, wearing only a suit and open-necked shirt with no overcoat, and he correctly kicked off his speech with the salutation "Hello, Tampa!":


Nonetheless, the fake "Tampa" video duped many partisans, who gleefully retweeted its misinformation as if it were real:

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