On 12 December 2015, Empire News published an article positing that President Obama had achieved the lowest score of any U.S. president since IQ testing of American chief executives began back in 1913:
As it turns out, the Republicans may have been right all along, and President Obama is not the smartest person in the room after all. Since Woodrow Wilson took office in 1913, all presidents have been given an IQ test at some point during their time as leader. Gerald Ford always held the record for lowest score, with a 111, which is considered just slightly above average. On the other end of the spectrum, George W. Bush scored a 132, which is considered ‘gifted.’ Two-Thirds of people who take the standardized IQ test score between 85-115.
The White House today spun President Obama’s 102 as a ‘solid average’ that is nothing to be ashamed of.
“President Obama never claimed to be smarter than anybody else. As a matter as fact, he has always represented himself as a regular guy, ‘a man of the people,’ as it were,” said Josh Earnest, White House Press Secretary. “The key to being a good leader is to surround yourself with smart people, which President Obama has always done. As far as needing to be a genius to run the country, well — George W. Bush had the highest score ever, and look at how that mess turned out. So, the next time President Obama bypasses congress with an executive order, and you’re about to say something cruel, racist, or otherwise completely ignorant, remember that he’s just a regular guy getting things done for you. And hey! At least he’s in the triple digits!”
But of course, nothing about the article was true. U.S. presidents are not routinely administered IQ tests, and the story was merely another piece of fake news from Empire News, a site that creates outrageously fictional clickbait stories in order to lure readers into generating advertising revenue for them. The site’s disclaimer notes that:
Empire News is intended for entertainment purposes only. Our website and social media content uses only fictional names, except in cases of public figure and celebrity parody or satirization.