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Fake: Photo of Chuck Schumer Kissing Young Girl

Hunter M. Lewis Hunter M. Lewis
27th July 2020
Fake: Photo of Chuck Schumer Kissing Young Girl
There is no evidence it is Schumer in the photo (Getty Images).

The Claim

A photo depicts Senator Chuck Schumer kissing a young girl on the lips while sitting on a beach that is allegedly the private island of the late Jeffrey Epstein.

Emerging story

This photo was originally shared as early as June 16th, 2019, but did not gain traction seriously until mid-summer 2020. Most recently, the majority have been posted on radical conservative pages, #QAnon conspiracy networks, or by individuals associated with those groups. The claim being made is generally that the photograph shows current Senator Chuck Schumer of New York kissing a small child on the mouth.

In addition, mosts of recent posts also reference billionaire Jeffrey Epstein and his sex abuse & pedophilia crimes, even claiming that the photo was taken on the beach of his infamous private island.

Misbar’s Analysis

Misbar’s investigation found that the claim is false. A version of the photo appeared in January 2020 on at least two activist pages for groups in Gambia and Senegal. Originally posted referencing Senegal, it was then shared by another group implying that it was actually Gambia. The post by Les Activistes Senegalaise has since been deleted, but another on January 21st from a group named Focus on Gambia remains. The image was then shared on Instagram and Picuki, a French social media site, that posted it with a caption that referred to a recent story by the Sun that exposed accused pedophilia and sexual abuse of impoverished Gambian children by European men visiting Gambian resort towns on the Atlantic coast. 

Misbar discovered that the first reference to Schumer attached to the photograph appeared two days after the Focus on Gambia post from a Twitter account.  In mid-summer 2020, the meme took off on several Conservative advocates’ profiles and conspiracy theory pages which eventually began adding the claim that the photo was taken on Epstein’s island – again with no apparent new evidence or reasoning to defend that. It has even resulted in a Change.org petition calling for Schumer’s arrest which, at this time, has only earned less than 200 signatures.

We compared both photos and found that the man in the photo is younger, more heavy-set, wears completely different glasses (his being bold and dark while Schumer’s are a thinner, tiger stripe-style), and also lacks many distinguishing characteristics that Schumer possesses. For instance, Schumer has noticeable freckles and birthmarks on the same side of the face that the man in this photo is showing, yet they are noticeably absent in the photo. He also bears a remarkably different hairline, texture, and color. 

Epstein did donate large sums of money to politicians, including Schumer. However, according to Schumer spokesman Angelo Roefaro, “While these campaign accounts closed about 20 years ago, and even then the campaign never controlled the two political action committees (PACs), Senator Schumer is donating an equal sum to anti-sex trafficking and anti-violence against women groups.”

Further, a spokesperson for Schumer said that it is “absolutely not” him.

Misbar’s Classification


Misbar’s Sources

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