Fake News: Maxine Waters Did NOT Say She Would Impeach Donald Trump If She Were President

Hoax Alert

  • by: Alan Duke
Fake News: Maxine Waters Did NOT Say She Would Impeach Donald Trump If She Were President

Did Rep. Maxine Waters say her first act as president would be to impeach Donald Trump? No, that's not true: It is a fictional quote placed on a doctored screenshot of the California congresswoman being interviewed by CNN's Anderson Cooper. It is apparently intended to imply that Waters is not smart enough to realize that if she were president, Trump would no longer be president and therefore not subject to impeachment.

Versions of the meme have circulated on social media at least since May 2018, including a post (archived here) published by the website ConservativeNews.com on May 16, 2018. It read:

"If elected what would your first act as president be?"

"well, Anderson, I would impeach Donald Trump."

This is what social media users saw:

There is no CNN transcript that includes this exchange. The image is a digitally-altered version of a screenshot from Cooper's interview of Waters on April 20, 2017, in which the congresswoman was reacting to the FOX News firing of host Bill O'Reilly. The banner was changed from "Bill O'Reilly Out At FOX News" to read "Maxine Waters 2020." Waters is not one of the two dozen Democrats seeking their party's presidential nomination.

This is a fake quote.

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  Alan Duke

Editor-in-Chief Alan Duke co-founded Lead Stories after ending a 26-year career with CNN, where he mainly covered entertainment, current affairs and politics. Duke closely covered domestic terrorism cases for CNN, including the Oklahoma City federal building bombing, the UNABOMBER and search for Southeast bomber Eric Robert Rudolph. CNN moved Duke to Los Angeles in 2009 to cover the entertainment beat. Duke also co-hosted a daily podcast with former HLN host Nancy Grace, "Crime Stories with Nancy Grace" and hosted the podcast series "Stan Lee's World: His Real Life Battle with Heroes & Villains." You'll also see Duke in many news documentaries, including on the Reelz channel, CNN and HLN.

Read more about or contact Alan Duke

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