Fact Check-Clip of California Governor manipulated to distort face

A doctored video is being shared on social media that shows California Governor Gavin Newsom speaking to camera, with the left side of his face seemingly distorted. The underlying clip used to create the video was published by Newsom on Nov. 4 and shows no such distortion to his face.

“Um what’s wrong with his face,” read one post sharing the manipulated video (here), prompting a variety of reactions.

While many users commented that the content had been digitally altered, others suggested his face appeared contorted because he had developed Bell’s palsy, a condition described here , from a COVID-19 booster vaccine (here ,

here , here). Newsom received his booster shot on Oct. 27, as reported by KCRA News (here).

The manipulated video features a watermark that reads “@mazmoore”. The Twitter account with this username has a bio that includes the term “digital artist” ( Reuters previously addressed another altered clip posted by the same user (here).

The original unaltered video, in which Newsom wishes people a good Diwali, was uploaded to his official Twitter account on Nov. 4, 2021 (here).

Footage of Newsom at the California Economic Summit on Nov. 9 shows no drooping to his mouth or eyes as suggested in the edited clip (here).

Daniel Lopez, press secretary to Newsom, told Reuters via email: “The Governor had no adverse reaction to his booster shot.”


Altered. This clip has been digitally manipulated to distort Newsom’s face.

This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our work to fact-check social media posts here .