October 23, 2020
Tori Foltz | MediaWise Teen Fact-Checker

MediaWise rating: Not legit

The presidential election is right around the corner, and while the focus has been on President Donald Trump and Joe Biden, rapper turned presidential candidate Kanye West is still on the ballot in a handful of states.

In this tweet, West shared a screenshot from LEX 18 News, a local Kentucky news outlet, showing him leading in Kentucky ahead of both Biden and Trump. Let’s look into it. 

Start off with a keyword search

We started off with a Google search. Using keywords like “Kanye West polling Kentucky” a few results came up, including this fact-check from USA Today

The headline pretty clearly states “Kanye West, other third-party candidates, not leading in Kentucky voting.” Of course, it’s never a good idea to read JUST the headline, so let’s see what’s up with this screenshot. 

It turns out these numbers aren’t real. According to USA Today, shortly after Kanye tweeted the image, LEX 18 News tweeted out that someone discovered a cached link that was used during the state’s June primary election to post Associated Press election results. 

What are other sources saying?

The Associated Press also reported on this. Basically, the screenshot Kanye West shared was of mock election data that the Associated Press gives to customers as part of routine testing ahead of elections. These test results were randomly generated.

So these numbers were just part of a test. And Nancy Cox, a LEX 18 News anchor, also clarified the situation through her Twitter account stating, “Despite what Kanye West is tweeting, he is not leading the race for President in Kentucky.” And most importantly, Twitter then marked the tweet as “manipulated media.” 

Our rating

This post is not legit. The numbers displayed in the screenshot are fake, and Kanye is not actually leading in Kentucky ahead of Biden or Trump.

This claim was also covered as a story on IGTV. Check it out below:

This fact check is available at IFCN’s 2020 U.S. Elections FactChat #Chatbot on WhatsApp. Click here for more.

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