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Ciara O'Rourke
By Ciara O'Rourke September 6, 2023

Clickbait Facebook post draws in users with supposed gossip about Melissa Rivers, Michelle Obama

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  • This is unfounded. 

A recent Facebook post suggests that Melissa Rivers, daughter of the late comedian Joan Rivers, knows a salacious secret about former first lady Michelle Obama. 

"Joan Riverss daughter threatens to expose Michelle Obama," read a video caption in a Sept. 4 Facebook post, misspelling Rivers’ last name. 

The caption was later edited to read: "Joan Rivers’s daughter hints at Michelle Obama’s truth," mispunctuating the last name. 

But the video itself offers no evidence to support either claim. 

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

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In the nearly 11-minute video, a narrator says: "In a recently surfaced interview, Melissa Rivers, the daughter of the late comedic legend Joan Rivers, dropped a bombshell that has since sent ripples through media circles and beyond. Melissa, outspoken in her own right, hinted at revealing undisclosed details about former first lady Michelle Obama."

But the interview it cites is neither recently surfaced nor about Melissa Rivers. 

"The comments were made in July 2014 when Joan Rivers was approached by a reporter on the streets of New York," the video narrator says. "The reporter asked Rivers if she believed that the U.S. would see a gay president in her lifetime. Rivers, never one to shy away from a bold statement, responded that the U.S. already had a gay president, referring to Barack Obama. She then added: Michelle is a transgender, implying that former first lady Michelle Obama is transgender." 

Michelle Obama is not a transgender woman, though Joan Rivers did make such an allegation in 2014. We’ve previously debunked claims that Joan Rivers was killed for her comments. 

We looked for news reports and other credible sources to corroborate the claim about Melissa Rivers but found no evidence that she threatened to expose Michelle Obama for anything, recently or at all. 

We rate this post False.


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Clickbait Facebook post draws in users with supposed gossip about Melissa Rivers, Michelle Obama

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