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- Sean Hannity was discussing President Joe Biden’s cognitive health; he wasn’t suggesting the president has been replaced by an impostor.
A clip of Sean Hannity’s show on Fox News has been taken out of context to promote the unfounded claim that the commander in chief is someone pretending to be President Joe Biden.
"This is not a medical diagnosis, I’m not a doctor, I won’t play one on TV, but it's pretty clear, transparent, it’s obvious, that’s not the same guy," Hannity said on his May 2021 show as two images of Biden appeared on the screen.
A recent Instagram post sharing that short clip from the show stops there. Text appears above the video that reads: "Where is the real Joe Biden!?"
Some people commenting on the post had a few ideas.
"We have an impostor running our country," one person said. "My question: is Congress & Senate in on this SCAM?"
"Died in 2017," someone else said.
"Whoever is playing Brandon is out doing themselves," a third wrote.
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.)
In the full May 2021 episode, Hannity’s complete comments make clear he’s talking about what he considers Biden’s declining cognitive health compared with earlier years.
Here’s what Hannity said in context:
"This is not a medical diagnosis. I'm not a doctor. I won't play one on TV.
"But it's pretty clear, transparent, it's obvious, that's not the same guy. His fastball is gone if he ever had one. His curveball is gone. Even if he had a slow pitch and a knuckleball, that's gone, too.
"Joe Biden is struggling. The media mob bashes me when I make an honest observation. Everyone on earth could see what is happening, including our enemies. We now have foreign news agencies doing what your media will not do. They are raising questions about Joe Biden's cognitive issues."
Hannity made similar remarks in subsequent episodes, such as in January 2022, when he said, "I'm not a medical professional but it appears to me to be very transparent, very obvious, very clear and so many others that Joe Biden is in a steep cognitive decline. It seems to be accelerating to me."
We rate claims that Hannity was talking about a Biden impostor False.
Instagram post, May 6, 2023
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