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Ciara O'Rourke
By Ciara O'Rourke October 15, 2020

No, a fly didn’t land on Amy Coney Barrett’s shoulder during her confirmation hearing

If Your Time is short

  • Video footage shows there was no fly on Amy Coney Barrett’s shoulder during the hearing. 
  • A Facebook user told USA Today that they photographed a fly that landed on the screen while they were watching the confirmation hearing and posted it as a joke. 

A fly made an unexpected cameo during the vice presidential debates on Oct. 7, alighting onto Vice President Mike Pence’s head and settling in for about two minutes. 

An image being shared on social media makes it look like another fly landed on the shoulder of Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett during the first day of her confirmation hearings. 

"Is that a mis-placed lapel pin?" one account sharing the image wrote. "Nope. A fly got in, and look where it landed."

This post was flagged as part of Facebook’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Facebook.) 

In the image, the fly appears on Barrett’s right shoulder and a timestamp says 2:08 p.m. Eastern time. 

Featured Fact-check

We watched the footage of the hearing posted by C-SPAN, and no fly appears on her shoulder during that time. You can see for yourself starting around the 5:14:00mark here, or starting around the 6:06:25 mark here.

Kirby Taylor, the user who posted the image on Facebook, told USA Today that it was a joke. She had been watching the hearing at home when a fly landed on the screen. Taylor took a photo and posted it to Facebook. 

But the photo has taken on a life of its own. Taylor’s post was shared more than 13,000 times and other users have taken the image and posted it on their own Facebook pages with captions like "Fly strikes again" and "Once again. Nature’s way of making things happen."

Even celebrity blogger Perez Hilton weighed in, posting: "Was this another fly or are my eyes seeing things????"

We rate this post False.


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No, a fly didn’t land on Amy Coney Barrett’s shoulder during her confirmation hearing

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