The Claim: Vice President Kamala Harris’ Children’s Book “Now Included in Welcome Kits for Unaccompanied Children at the Border”
Migrant children held by federal officials in California can expect to receive clothing, toiletries, food and – some conservative commentators say – a copy of Vice President Kamala Harris’ children’s book.
The book, titled “Superheroes Are Everywhere”, shows pictures of ordinary people and tells children that “you can be a superhero too”. Matt Kaye, conservative radio host and social media personality, said in the caption of a video from April 26 on Facebook that Harris can “cash books at (the) border.”
“Get this, it’s now included in the welcome packs for unaccompanied children at the border – the border she is in charge of but still refuses to visit,” he says in the video, which has over 220,000 views .
During the video, Kaye reads from an article from the Daily Mail on Harris’ role in curbing the influx of migrants to the southern border of the United States. The tabloid wrote that the vice president’s children’s book “is included in welcome packs for unaccompanied children who cross the border illegally.”
The Daily Mail story overlaps with reporting from the New York Post, which wrote in an article from April 23 that “unaccompanied migrant children brought from the US-Mexico border to a new shelter in Long Beach, Calif., will receive a copy of his 2019 children’s book, ‘Superheroes Are Everywhere,’ in their welcome kits . ” The story was published on the front page of the tabloid on April 24.
The claim that Harris’ book is included in “welcome packs” for migrant children has been widely encouraged by Republican lawmakers, especially Senator Tom Cotton, R-Ark., Media like Fox news, and a lot Facebook users.
But it’s wrong.
The New York Post first temporarily deleted and revised its story after fact-checkers debunked it. Long Beach officials say migrant children across the US-Mexico border are not receiving copies of Harris’s book as part of a welcome package.
USA TODAY has reached out to Kaye for comment.
The camp has only one copy of Harris’s book
False claims that authorities are distributing copies of Harris’s book to all unaccompanied minors date back to an image of a Long Beach shelter.
In their articles, the Daily Mail and the New York Post both cited a photo of April 22 which shows a copy of “Superheroes Are Everywhere” on a cot at the Long Beach Convention Center. The US Department of Health and Human Services uses the center to temporarily house unaccompanied migrant children from the US-Mexico border.
Kevin Lee, public affairs manager for the city of Long Beach, told USA TODAY in an email that the “Heroes Are Everywhere” copy was donated as part of a large-scale book and toy drive. of the city for migrant children staying at the center.
“The only book you are referring to is one of the thousands of books that have already been donated,” Lee said. “The book was not purchased by HHS or the city. It was a unique book and was not part of a mass donation of that specific title. “
Harris’ book is not part of a “welcome pack” given to migrant children. Lee said the book is now in a library at the shelter.
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Sabrina Singh, spokeswoman for the Biden administration, said Harris’s office was unaware her book was at the shelter.
“A city-wide donation for books and toys was organized by the community to donate to children staying in migrant facilities,” Singh told USA TODAY in an email. “The vice president’s office didn’t know her children’s book had been donated.”
New York Post revises story, reporter quits
The New York Post reporter who wrote the article on Harris’ book resigned and called the story “incorrect.” The newspaper temporarily deleted and then revised the article after fact-checkers found it to be false.
After the Washington Post published its fact check, the New York Post deleted its article without publishing a correction or retraction. Then he published a modified version of the story about 12 hours later.
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“The original version of this article stated that migrant children received Harris’s book in a welcome kit, but has been updated to note that only one known copy of the book was given to a child,” says an editor at the bottom of the updated article page.
Fox News also published an editor’s note at the end of its story on Harris’ book.
“In an earlier version of this story, it was implied that there were multiple copies of Harris’s book available for children in welcome packs,” the note said.
In a thread from April 27 On Twitter, Laura Italiano, the reporter who wrote the story, said she quit the New York Post because of the story.
“The Kamala Harris story – an incorrect story that I was ordered to write and failed to push back hard enough – was my breaking point,” she said in thread.
USA TODAY has contacted the New York Post for comment.
Our rating: False
The claim that Harris’ children’s book “is now included in welcome kits for unaccompanied children at the border” is FALSE, based on our research. A copy of “Superheroes Are Everywhere” was donated to a Long Beach shelter as part of a book and toy drive and was captured in a widely shared photo. Unaccompanied migrant children do not receive the book in “welcome packs”.
Our sources of fact-checking:
- Amazon, accessed April 28 Superheroes are everywhere
- CNN, April 27 New York Post Temporarily Removes, Then Edits Fake Story That Harris Book Was Distributed in ‘Welcome Kits’ to Migrants
- Email interview with Kevin Lee, April 28
- Email interview with Sabrina Singh, April 28
- DelcoGOP, April 25 Facebook message
- Mark Kaye, April 26, Facebook post with video
- Fox News, Kamala Harris is not at the southern border – but migrant children get Veep’s book (archived version)
- Los Angeles Times, April 22 Opening of the Long Beach Convention Center as a temporary facility for unaccompanied migrant children
- New York Post, April 23 Kamala is not at the southern border – but migrant children get Veep’s book (archived version)
- PolitiFact, April 27 No, Biden administration does not buy Kamala Harris book for migrant children
- Reuters, April 22 Photo
- Snopes, April 27, 2021, Did Biden’s administrator give Kamala Harris’s book to migrant children?
- Laura Italiano, April 27 Tweeter
- Senator Tom Cotton, April 25 Tweeter
- The Washington Post, April 27 No, officials are not distributing Harris’s picture book to migrant children