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Fact Check-No evidence J.K. Rowling tweeted ‘keep your legs closed’ in response to U.S. abortion ruling

A screenshot of tweet, purportedly written by the author J.K. Rowling, has been shared online, saying “American birds” would not need abortions if they kept their legs closed. There is no evidence that Rowling sent the tweet from her account, and her PR team told Reuters that the message had been fabricated.

A screenshot of the purported tweet reads: “If you American birds could keep your legs closed then maybe you wouldn’t need abortions in the first place?” The text is featured alongside the author’s Twitter handle, @jk_rowling.

Thousands of people have since interacted with the screenshot in iterations shared on Twitter (here) and Facebook (here), (here), (here), (here) and (here), with comments suggesting it is authentic.

“The tweet you show is not by J.K. Rowling,” a spokesperson for J.K. Rowling’s P.R. Team told Reuters by email.

Based on the screenshot, the tweet was sent on June 26, days after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the Roe v. Wade ruling that gave women a constitutional right to abortion (here).

The purported tweet does not appear on Rowling’s timeline (here) and was not captured on The Internet Archive (here). There is also no evidence of Twitter users responding to a later-deleted tweet making such comments.

Rowling has previously tweeted in support of abortion.

In response to a thread from a fellow user on May 6 detailing their experience, Rowling wrote: “This thread is heartbreaking and terrifying. Stories like these are a huge part of the reason I believe women all over the world should have access to safe, legal abortion” (here).

She wrote in another tweet on May 6: “I've always supported gay marriage & I support women's right to safe, legal abortion should they wish to terminate a pregnancy” (here).

VERDICT

False. There is no evidence to show that this tweet existed. Rowling’s team told Reuters it was fabricated.

This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work here.

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