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This tweet appears to be doctored.
It didn’t appear in multiple searches of archive websites and we didn’t find it searching Lake’s Twitter accounts.
A supposed tweet from defeated Arizona Republican gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake is making a splash on Twitter. But it’s not about her falsely claiming that she won the 2022 general election against Democrat Katie Hobbs, as she has done many times. (Hobbs beat Lake by more than 17,000 votes.)
Rather, the screenshot, which was shared March 11 on Twitter, shows Lake calling former President Donald Trump "fat" shortly after he won the 2016 presidential election. (President William Howard Taft was famously heavy, weighing more than 300 pounds.)
"Congratulations to the obese American public for getting one of their own into the White House, the fattest U.S. president since Taft." The timestamp in the image showed 12:31 p.m. on Nov. 9, 2016, the same day Trump was projected to win the election.
But we found no evidence that Lake wrote this, although Politiwoops — a ProPublica database of deleted tweets from politicians — is no longer able to operate after changes that followed Elon Musk’s acquisition of Twitter.
This claim also surfaced in November 2022 and was met with research from a number of skeptical internet sleuths. Multiple Twitter users responded at the time, saying they also searched various internet archives and found no evidence the tweet existed.
Results from a reverse-image search show no record of the tweet being mentioned online before Nov. 4, 2022, making its legitimacy even more unlikely.
In July 2022, Fox News reported that Lake, who previously worked as a news anchor for KSAZ-TV in Phoenix, had shared an anti-Trump meme on Facebook that said "Not my president" in the days before his January 2017 inauguration. But Lake said in the caption that the meme, which outlined ways to protest the event, was sent to her by a Facebook follower.
Her campaign also told Fox that this was "very clearly a news-anchor's post; reporting that there was outrage against President Trump's election and asking if people were going to visibly protest his inauguration as the meme suggests. To make anything more out of it is just silly."
The post has since been removed from Lake’s account.
Meanwhile, shortly after Trump was declared the winner in 2016 (the same day of the supposed tweet about Trump’s weight), Lake shared her thoughts on Facebook. She wrote that, "Donald Trump just delivered a very solid victory speech. Sadly, I think many of the people who dislike him, and are upset, did not hear it. I hope it gets replayed tomorrow because I sense he wants to try to bring this country together after a difficult campaign."
We rate claims that Lake tweeted in 2016 an insult about Trump’s weight False.
Associated Press, Calling the presidential race state by state, Nov. 9, 2016
Twitter post, Nov. 5, 2022
WayBack Machine search, March 26, 2023
Archive.ph search, March 16, 2023
TinEye reverse image search, March 16, 2023
GhostArchive.org search, March 16, 2023
Twitter, Kari Lake account, March 16, 2023
Kari Lake Facebook post, Nov. 9, 2016
Fox News, Trump-backed Kari Lake shared anti-Trump 'not my president' meme on Facebook days before 2017 inauguration, July 20, 2022
Harvard Health Publishing, Letters from an obese president tell a familiar story of struggling with weight, Oct. 15, 2013
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