Fact Check: The Three Red Lines On Biden-Harris Campaign Logo Are NOT A Reference To Chinese Socialism

Fact Check

  • by: Hallie Golden
Fact Check: The Three Red Lines On Biden-Harris Campaign Logo Are NOT A Reference To Chinese Socialism Coincidence

Do the three red lines in the Joe Biden and Kamala Harris logo refer to a Chinese campaign involving building socialism? No, that's not true: It's just a coincidence, and one of the designers of the logo said the stripes have a far different meaning. Jonathan Hoefler, who drew the logo, said the lines are a reference to the stripes on the American flag.

The claim, which seems to be referring to China's "Three Red Banners" campaign, appeared in a post (archived here) on Facebook on October 20, 2020, and showed an image of the Biden-Harris campaign logo. The post said:

A friend said look up what 3 red banners stand for, so I did. Simple Google search ( 3 red banners). Enjoy

This is what the post looked like on Facebook at the time of writing:

Facebook screenshot

(Source: Facebook screenshot taken on Wed Oct 21 23:03:56 2020 UTC)

This is another version of the post shared on Facebook:

Screen Shot 2020-10-21 at 4.12.30 PM.png

The posts on Facebook appear to be claiming there is a connection between these red lines and a movement in China in the 1950's known as the "Three Red Banners" or "Three Red Flags." According to a piece published by the Canadian Center of Science and Education and an entry on Britannica.com, these terms were used to describe a movement considered extremely harmful to the country that included "the general approach of building socialism," the "Great Leap Forward" (a campaign by Chinese communists to address the country's industrial and agricultural challenges) and "people's commune."

Hoefler, director of Hoefler&Co., a type foundry in New York, told Lead Stories the red lines on the Biden logo are not a reference to China or socialism, but rather "a reference to the stripes on the American flag." He collaborated with Robyn Kanner, senior creative adviser at Biden for President, to design the logo.

The company's fonts have also been used on Coca-Cola cans and on Twitter, as well as in Wired and The Wall Street Journal.

The campaign logo spells out both Biden's and Harris's last names in all blue expect for three red lines where the "E" in Biden's name would be.

In both 2008 and 2012, the Barack Obama presidential campaign logo also included three red lines.

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  Hallie Golden

Hallie Golden is a fact checker at Lead Stories and a freelance journalist based in Seattle. Her articles have been published in such places as The Guardian, The New York Times and Bloomberg CityLab.  She previously worked as a reporter and editor for The Associated Press in Salt Lake City, Utah, and Philadelphia, Pa

Read more about or contact Hallie Golden

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