Following remarks made at the White House on March 12 by U.S. President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer on the new $1.9 trillion pandemic relief bill, social media posts have claimed that the event was not held at the real White House Rose Garden, but rather a film set. This claim, which speaks to the baseless QAnon belief that Biden is not really president, is false.
Some supporters of the widely debunked QAnon conspiracy theory, which espouses that former President Trump is secretly fighting a cabal of child-sex predators that includes prominent Democrats, Hollywood elites and “deep state” allies (here), claim that Biden is not really president and that the military is in power until Trump returns to office.
The caption on one post claims that the event “was filmed in Atlanta at Tyler Perry studios...the stadium in the background was the former Turner stadium that was used by the Atlanta Braves and now is used by Georgia State University” (here).
Meanwhile, an Instagram post here suggests that the event took place at “Castle Rock Studios,” a reference to Castle Rock Pictures’ White House set, used for the 1995 film ''The American President,” in Los Angeles (here).
Owned by the eponymous movie mogul, the sprawling Tyler Perry Studios complex in Atlanta, Georgia does include an extensive White House set (here), as does film director Rob Reiner’s Castle Rock Entertainment (here). Friday’s remarks, however, were delivered from the real White House in the nation’s capital.
A spokesperson for Tyler Perry Studios confirmed to Reuters via email that the president and vice president did not speak from the Atlanta lot last week.
Meanwhile, Rob Reiner himself told Reuters via email that the Castle Rock White House set, which was used in several productions including “The West Wing,” was “destroyed many years ago.”
The posts show an image taken from White House’s South Lawn, where the Rose Garden, which borders the Oval Office West Wing, is located (here). Tweeted on Friday afternoon by Jeff Mason, White House correspondent for Reuters, and Jennifer Jacobs, White House correspondent for Bloomberg News, similar images of the event are available here and here .
As reported here by Reuters, Biden, Harris, Pelosi, and Schumer spoke on Friday, March 12 about the $1.9 trillion "American Rescue Plan Act" during an event to celebrate the legislation in the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington. The president’s full speech is provided here by the White House Briefing Room, which names the Rose Garden as the site of his speech.
Reuters White House correspondent Jeff Mason told the Fact Check team via email that he was there in the Rose Garden on Friday, and that Biden, Harris, Pelosi and Schumer all were there in person, at the White House, in Washington, D.C. Mason’s live tweets from that afternoon can be seen here , here and here .
An August 2020 video revealing former First Lady Melania Trump’s finished restoration of the Rose Garden ahead of her Republican National Convention speech from the outdoor space is available here . Around the 41-second mark, an angle similar to the one in the Facebook posts, several of which falsely claim to show “the former Turner stadium that was used by the Atlanta Braves and now is used by Georgia State University,” is visible.
False. March 12 remarks made by President Biden and others on the COVID-19 relief bill were made from the real White House in Washington, D.C., not Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta or Castle Rock Studios in Los Angeles.
This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work here .
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.