Bernie Sanders supporters were shocked and appalled when news outlets such as Fox News and InfoWars reported that Hillary Clinton had secretly referred to Berniecrats as a “bucket of losers.” The reports indicated that emails from Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman John Podesta had been leaked by WikiLeaks and contained the damning statements. The story was quickly picked up by conservative news groups with shocking headlines such as “Hillary calls her own supporters a ‘bucket of losers.‘” However, it appears the publications did not properly vet the story before publishing and the WikiLeaks Podesta emails proved to be a hoax.
The story took off when fake news website Real.True.News posted the story to their web page with screenshots of the alleged offending emails. In the fake news piece, the publication claimed that WikiLeaks had hacked the email of Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman John Podesta. Screenshots of the supposed transcripts were shared on social media and quickly went viral. The image shared claimed that the “low social capital individuals” supporting Bernie Sanders were a “bucket of losers.”
“What we see on the left is way more disconcerting. The early data suggests that while the minority base is probably still dominated by the Democratic messaging, a coalition of sub altern interests is forming that could, with an extremely weak Republican nominee, create and aperture for either a 3rd party victory or, in essence an election inflection point where an insurgent candidate could actually co-opt — take over — a major party.”
“This coalition, a collection of generally under-represented, low social capital individuals has become increasingly networked and increasingly motivated.”
“This group that our analysts are calling the ((Makes air quotes)) bucket of losers could not only be a significant force in the next election but could, on an outside percentile, even win.”
Below is a sample of some of the social media postings made with the fake transcript.
— REGATED (@regated) October 8, 2016
— Firearms (@realFirearms) October 8, 2016
Though the story was shared heavily online, it later proved to be a hoax. As journalists began searching the WikiLeaks’ email database, they noticed that only two Podesta emails were present and neither made a reference to the “bucket of losers” statement. Therefore, more digging was done and it was revealed that the emails first surfaced from the fake news website. The story had already gained enough momentum that the official Wikileaks Twitter account addressed the issue. Wikileaks noted that the “bucket of losers” transcript was not published by their outlet and that it was an “obvious fake.”
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) October 8, 2016
Since the hoax went viral, numerous publications have debunked the story and Fox News host Megyn Kelly even apologized on air for reading the false WikiLeaks report.
Though the “bucket of losers” transcript was a hoax, the WikiLeaks dump of Hillary Clinton’s paid speeches was very real. As the BBC points out, the transcripts are damning for the Clinton campaign as they provide an insider look into her closed door speeches and changes in policy when speaking to the super wealthy. The transcripts reveal that Clinton is much more ” pro-open-trade and sympathetic to Wall Street interests” than she leads on in public policy. In fact, during a speech in 2013 to the Brazilian bank, Clinton discussed her dream world which included open trade and open borders.
“My dream is a hemispheric common market, with open trade and open borders, some time in the future with energy that is as green and sustainable as we can get it, powering growth and opportunity for every person in the hemisphere.”
What do you think of the media outlets that fell for the “bucket of losers” hoax Wikileaks transcripts?
[Featured Image by Charles Krupa/AP Images]