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AP spotlight

Not real news roundup: Obama's vacations not free, cannibals didn't cure diabetes

A roundup of some of the most popular, but completely untrue, headlines of the week. None of these stories are legit, even though they were shared widely on social media. The Associated Press checked these out; here are the real facts:

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Barack Obama

FILE - President Barack Obama celebrates after hitting a long chip shot on the 18th hole during a round of golf at Mid-Pacific Country Club, Monday, Dec. 21, 2015, in Kailua, Hawaii. The AP reported on June 16, 2017, that a story circulating online claiming President Donald Trump has cut off more than $2 billion earmarked for funding of Obama’s vacations through 2036 is false. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

NOT REAL: Trump Just Ended Obama's Vacation Scam And Sent Him A Bill You Have To See To Believe

THE FACTS: This story claims President Donald Trump has cut off more than $2 billion earmarked for funding of former President Barack Obama's vacations through 2036. The story cites the source of the money as the Office of Presidential Visits and Vacations, which doesn't exist. Since leaving office in January, Obama has vacationed in California, the British Virgin Islands and Tahiti. The story originated with thelastlineofdefense.org, an admitted hoax site.


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Not Real News

FILE - In this May 20, 2012, file photo, the annular solar eclipse is seen as the sun sets behind the Rocky Mountains from downtown Denver. The AP reported on June 16, 2017, that a story circulating online that claims NASA says the Earth will experience 15 days of darkness in Nov. 2017 is false. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)

NOT REAL: NASA Confirms Earth Will Experience 15 Days Of Darkness In November 2017

THE FACTS: The sun will continue to shine on the world later this year, despite the claims in several stories circulating on social media. The stories cite a complicated interaction between Venus and Jupiter as the cause for the impending darkness. They say NASA Administrator Charles Bolden has sent the White House a 1,000-page paper on the topic. Bolden resigned when Trump took office. The stories have been circulating since at least 2015, with varying dates for the nonexistent blackout.


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Not Real News

FILE - In this Oct. 19, 2016, file photo, Chelsea Clinton laughs as she talks to a crowd at Arizona State University about her years in the White House as a kid while campaigning for her mother, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, in Tempe, Ariz. The AP reported on June 16, 2017, that a story claiming Chelsea Clinton was thrown to the floor and handcuffed over a scandal involving the Clinton Foundation is false. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)

NOT REAL: Furious Chelsea Clinton Thrown To The Floor And Handcuffed After Senator Lindsay Scandal Linked To Clinton Foundation

THE FACTS: Not only was Chelsea Clinton not thrown to the floor and handcuffed, the New Jersey senator referred to in this story from thelastlineofdefense.org doesn't exist. An official list of all senators in U.S. history reveals only one with the last name of Lindsay; he represented Kentucky for about two weeks in 1893. Cory Booker and Robert Menendez represent New Jersey in the U.S. Senate. Nevertheless, the story is just one of several involving Clinton that refers to the nonexistent Sen. Lindsay.


NOT REAL: Cannibals Arrested In Florida Claim Eating Human Flesh Cures Diabetes and Depression

THE FACTS: A satire site, The Miami Gazette, published a widely shared piece with mugshots of three men. It quotes police in Vernal Heights, Florida, as saying the men were found eating human remains in a basement and saying that cannibalism helped cure their illnesses. Vernal Heights is not one of Florida's more than 200 municipalities. And the photograph of a man identified as the town's police chief comes from a Greek stock photo site.


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Judy Chu, Maxine Waters,  Jerrold Nadler

Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., center, with Rep. Judy Chu, D-Calif., back center, and Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., right, speaks during news conference on a Woman's Right to Choose on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 8, 2011. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

NOT REAL: Democrat Maxine Waters Has Shown Up To Only 10% Of Congressional Meetings For 35 YEARS

THE FACTS: The sole evidence offered for the California congresswoman's attendance record is a post by a Reddit user. According to GovTrack, which keeps a record of lawmakers' voting habits, Waters has an attendance mark of more than 92 percent for roll call votes since coming to Washington in 1991. Waters made headlines earlier this year during a public tussle with now-fired Fox News host Bill O'Reilly.

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This weekly fixture is part of The Associated Press' ongoing efforts to fact-check claims in suspected false news stories.

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