The claim: Trump said, 'Some Africans are lazy fools only good at eating, lovemaking and stealing'
Falsely attributed quotes on social media that target politicians have become a popular form of misinformation, particularly as the 2020 election season enters its final stretch.
A phrase claiming to come from President Donald Trump that circulated in October 2015 is making the rounds again on social media platforms.
The article, allegedly published Oct. 27, 2015, claims Trump, while in Indianapolis, said African Americans are "lazy." The story does not reference a date or context for Trump speaking in that city.
The social media post contains what appears to be a picture of the print version of the article, which has "'Africans Are Lazy, Good At Sex, Theft,'" as a headline, above a photo of Trump. The article quotes Trump as referring to Africans and African Americans interchangeably.
“African Americans are very lazy," the article attributes to Trump. "The best they can do is gallivanting around ghettoes, lamenting how they are discriminated. These are the people America doesn’t need. They are the enemies of progress. Look at African countries like Kenya for instance, those people are stealing from their own government and go to invest the money in foreign countries. From the government to opposition, they only qualify to be used as a case study whenever bad examples are required."
The article also claims that Trump "reiterated his promise to deport Africans especially those of Kenyan origin including their son (Barack) Obama."
The story was republished by Nigerian and Zimbabwean websites, which cite a publication called Politica as the source, a fake news site, according to BBC News. All date the article Oct. 25 or Oct. 26 in 2015.
Politica has since deleted the original article.
Trump's time was accounted for
The quote was attributed to Trump while he was campaigning for the White House.
Trump was active on Twitter that day, describing his media appearances throughout the morning.
A big POLL will be announced this morning on @CBSNews Face The Nation. I wonder if I do well if the press will report the results? Doubt it— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 25, 2015
Any such comments would have been reported
Trump did not appear to make any public appearance in Indianapolis in October 2015.
At that time, Trump was the front-runner for the GOP nomination for president, and comments such as those claimed would have gained national attention. A study by the New York Times showed that by March 2016, Trump was being covered by "free media" outlets more than twice as much as his Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton.
As an example, national media outlets gave ample coverage to his June 2015 comments accusing Mexican immigrants of bringing "drugs" and "crime" to America, as well as calling them rapists.
Our ruling: False
There is no evidence that Trump said "'Some Africans are lazy fools only good at eating, lovemaking and stealing,'" or any of the other comments in the news item quoted in the social media posts. We rate this claim as FALSE, because it is not supported by our research, and was debunked previously when it circulated in 2015.
Our fact-check sources:
- Snopes, Oct. 27, 2015, Did Trump Say Africans Are “Lazy Fools Only Good at Eating, Lovemaking and Thuggery”?
- BBC News, Nov. 11, 2016, Mythbuster: What Donald Trump didn't say about Africa
- Reuters, July 10, 2020, Fact check: False Donald Trump quote on Africans
- New York Times, March 15, 2016, $2 Billion Worth of Free Media for Donald Trump
- ABC News, Oct. 25, 2015, Donald Trump Won’t Apologize to Ben Carson Over Religion Comments
- The Today Show, Oct. 26, 2015, Donald Trump: My dad gave me 'a small loan' of $1 million to get started
- Face the Nation, Oct. 25, 2015, Full Interview: Donald Trump, October 25
- President Donald Trump, Twitter page
- LexisNexis news database
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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Fact check: Fake article from 2015 quoting Donald Trump resurfaces