STORY UPDATED: check for updates below.
Did Donald Trump endorse a "$6,400 bonus" scheme before Christmas 2023? No, that's not true: Lead Stories could not find any evidence that the former president ever made any of the comments in a video making the claim, and it appears to be an AI-generated voice making the statements. There is no such federal program at the time of writing. This is one of many forms of this claim, which all use fake media of celebrities to lure the unsuspecting.
The claim appeared in a video (archived here) where it was published on Facebook on December 15, 2023, under the title, "Last Day. Dont Miss out!" It opened with a voice that sounded like Trump's saying:
Regardless of what you think of me, this can help everyone. I'm about to put over $6400 in your pocket that you need before Christmas. This new program is an economic incentive program that is open for every single one of you and most people don't even know about it so pay attention.
This is what the post looked like on Facebook at the time of writing:
(Source: Facebook screenshot taken on Mon Dec 18 23:56:20 2023 UTC)
There is no evidence that Trump, or the U.S. government, has offered a $6,400 economic incentive program. A search (archived here) of Google's index of thousands of credible sites, for keywords "Donald Trump" and the quote from the video ("Regardless of what you think of me, this can help everyone. I'm about to put over $6,400 in your pocket that you need before Christmas,") yields zero matching results of the former president making the claim. Had he done so, that would have been national news.
Lead Stories has published several fact checks about ads purporting to offer health spending cards from a federal benefits program. Trump is not the only person whose likeness has been used to produce a false endorsement. Public figures ranging from Michelle Obama and Cardi B and Lil Wayne to Joe Biden and Joe Rogan are among those whose names are used to mislead people into signing on with a referral service.
For more information about this type of deceptive promotion, an August 2023 Lead Stories fact check focused on the scam. We wrote:
The companies behind such web pages typically are trying to advertise some federal assistance guidance or insurance service to users. The federal government has warned Americans that it 'does not offer "free money"' and that such claims are often scams.
This particular promotion is coupled with a link to the website subsidyplan.com (archived here) which claims at the top of the page, "Get A $1,400 Subsidy With A $0 Health Plan." The website has only existed since August 29, 2023. It contains no details about who is running it or any contact information.
A search of Congress' website shows no legislation related to a "6400 economic incentive program." A section discussing scams on the USA.gov website specifically warns about "imposters" pretending to represent "someone in authority."
2023-12-19T10:19:58Z 2023-12-19T10:19:58ZFixed typo, changing "never" to "ever".