Fact Check: Faked Photo Appears To Show Taylor Swift Holding 'Trump Won / Democrats Cheated' Banner -- It Was Edited

Fact Check

  • by: Alexis Tereszcuk
Fact Check: Faked Photo Appears To Show Taylor Swift Holding 'Trump Won / Democrats Cheated' Banner -- It Was Edited Doctored Pic

Is a photo of singer Taylor Swift holding a banner that reads "TRUMP WON DEMOCRATS CHEATED" authentic? No, that's not true: The photo is edited to show Swift holding a banner. The original image is a video posted by the entertainment publication Variety showing Swift on the red carpet at the 2024 Grammy Awards. Swift is wearing long black gloves in the original video but in the doctored image her hands are bare. There are no legitimate images of Swift holding that banner, or any banner.

The claim appeared in a post (archived here) on Threads, an Instagram app where people can post conversations, on April 9, 2024. It showed Swift holding a sign that read:


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

Screen Shot 2024-04-11 at 10.52.10 AM.png

(Source: Threads screenshot taken on Thu Apr 11 15:24:23 2024 UTC)

The photo seen in the post shows Swift looking down and appearing to hold up a red banner that reads, "TRUMP WON DEMOCRATS CHEATED!"

A Google News search of "Taylor Swift AND GRAMMYs 2024 AND red carpet AND Trump Won banner" (archived here) did not yield any significant results.

While the image posted on Threads does not have any identifying source information, a previous Lead Stories fact check focused on a similar picture that had the caption "Taylor Swift blends politics and fashion on the #GRAMMYs red carpet." A search on X, formerly known as Twitter, for that phrase returned a post on satire account @PooCrave (archived here) with a video of Swift holding the banner and showing the Variety magazine logo on the top right of the image:

The original video was posted on Variety's verified X account on February 4, 2024 (archived here):

As the video opens, Swift is looking down at the person on the red carpet fixing her dress, which matches the direction of her head in the image posted on Threads. She is wearing long black gloves and is not carrying a "TRUMP WON/DEMOCRATS CHEATED" banner or any banner.

The claim had previously been reviewed by multiple fact checking organizations in January and February 2024, including by USA Today, PolitiFact and by Snopes.

Other Lead Stories fact checks about Taylor Swift can be found here.

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  Alexis Tereszcuk

Alexis Tereszcuk is a writer and fact checker at Lead Stories and an award-winning journalist who spent over a decade breaking hard news and celebrity scoop with RadarOnline and Us Weekly.

As the Entertainment Editor, she investigated Hollywood stories and conducted interviews with A-list celebrities and reality stars.  

Alexis’ crime reporting earned her spots as a contributor on the Nancy Grace show, CNN, Fox News and Entertainment Tonight, among others.

Read more about or contact Alexis Tereszcuk

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