As Hurricane Ida, the fifth most powerful recorded hurricane to strike the United States, affected thousands of people across different states, social media users are sharing an old, fabricated tweet attributed to Democratic Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez about hurricanes and electric cars.
The content has been circulating since 2019 and debunked since by several fact-checkers ( here , apnews.com/article/7210910138 , here , here ) , users continued to share it in early September 2021 ( here, here).
The alleged tweet, made to appear as if it was created on Aug. 30, 2019, reads: “I saw people are rushing out to fill up their cars for this hurricane at the gas station This wouldn’t be an issue if they had electric cars. If the power is out for a week how are they going to get gas? We need to start planning ahead and moving forward.”
Reuters found no record of this purported tweet. It is not visible on Twitter search ( bit.ly/3jFW4EL ). Politwoops, a project by ProPublica that archives deleted tweets from politicians, also shows no register of the alleged tweet, indicating it was likely fabricated ( bit.ly/3jKeynI ) .
In 2019, Ocasio-Cortez responded to a tweet asking if the tweet was authentic. “Nope,” she replied ( archive.ph/KNhQ9 ).
At the time, before Hurricane Dorian hit ( www.weather.gov/mhx/Dorian2019 ), some gas stations on Florida’s east coast ran out of fuel as people tried to stock up with this and other basic supplies ( here ). Long lines of cars were seen outside gas stations ( here, here).
Hurricane Ida struck the Gulf coast last weekend and moved northward through the eastern United States, culminating in torrential rains and widespread flooding in New York, New Jersey and surrounding areas. Flash flooding killed at least 44 people as cars were swept away, New York City subway lines were submerged and flights grounded, officials said on Thursday ( here ).
Ocasio-Cortez, popularly known as AOC, has been vocal about battling climate change. She introduced the Green New Deal with Sen. Edward Markey in 2019, a set of aggressive climate goals intended to transform the U.S. economy. They reintroduced their non-binding resolution in April 2021 ( here ).
False. There is no record of this alleged tweet by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. The congresswoman has previously said the content is not authentic.
This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work here.
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