Fact Check: Picture Does NOT Show Sen. Rand Paul In Bathrobe -- It's AI-Generated

Fact Check

  • by: Marlo Lee
Fact Check: Picture Does NOT Show Sen. Rand Paul In Bathrobe -- It's AI-Generated AI Image

Did Senator Rand Paul show up to work at the U.S. Capitol barefoot wearing a red bathrobe as an apparent comment on a change to the Senate's dress code? No, that's not true: This is an AI-generated image. The poster of this on X admitted that this is a picture made by artificial intelligence. The X user who originally made this image has a disclaimer in their bio saying that they post satirical content.

The claim appeared on X, formerly Twitter, published on September 22, 2023 (archived here) which opened:

JUST IN: Senator Rand Paul showed up to work at the Capitol barefoot wearing a red bathrobe after the Senate changed the dress code to accommodate for John Fetterman. Giving the Democrats a taste of their own medicine! LOVE THIS!! 😂😂

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

image (42).png

Twitter screenshot(Source: X screenshot taken on Mon Sep 25 14:14:55 2023 UTC)

The X post included a picture that appeared to show the Kentucky senator sitting barefoot on marble steps with what appeared to be the U.S. Capitol behind him. The photo implied that Paul was making his statement about a 2023 change in the U.S. Senate dress code.

A reverse image search of the image (archived here) on TinEye, an image search and recognition company, did not give us any evidence that this was a real photo.

An analysis of this image in Hive Moderation (archived here), an AI-generated content detection tool, showed that there is a 99.5 percent chance that is picture is likely to be AI-generated. Below is evidence of this:

Screenshot 2023-09-25 at 10.37.31 AM.png

(Source: Hive Moderation screenshot taken on Mon Sep 25 14:37:55 2023 UTC)

A Google News search of the phrase, "Rand Paul AND bathrobe AND dress code" (archived here) did not yield a legitimate article on Paul being seen around the Capitol in a bathrobe.

The creator of this X post replied to their own post admitting that this is artificial intelligence:

The aforementioned tweet mentions the X user, @jeffcharlesjr (archived here). Charles originally posted this same image of Paul in a bathrobe on September 22, 2023, also. Proud Elephant posted the photo at 7:49 PM EST, while Charles posted it at 6:21 PM EST. This user regularly posts satirical posts as seen by the line in his bio saying, "BREAKING = Satire." Here is the post (archived here):

Screenshot 2023-09-25 at 11.45.51 AM.png

(Source: X screenshot taken on Mon Sep 25 15:46:33 2023 UTC)

The Associated Press reported on September 18, 2023, under a headlne that read "Senate ditches dress code as Fetterman and others choose casual clothes" (archived here) that the Senate announced that it will no longer enforce a dress code on the floor of the chamber. The article referred to Sen. John Fetterman of Pennsylvania who frequently dresses in casual clothes and shorts as he goes about his businessin the Capitol.

Lead Stories has debunked another AI image made by Charles here.

Other Lead Stories articles on claims involving artificial intelligence can be found here.

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Marlo Lee is a fact checker at Lead Stories. She is a graduate of Howard University with a B.S. in Biology. Her interest in fact checking started in college, when she realized how important it became in American politics. She lives in Maryland.

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