They found it on the internet so it must be true, right?
A super PAC that aired a TV ad praising U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson has removed from the ad an image of President Barack Obama shaking hands with the president of Iran after news organizations reported the image was fake.
A spokesman for the committee, Restoration PAC, said Friday afternoon that it didn’t initially realize the image was fake and pulled it from the ad after it learned so. News organizations, the first of which was Buzzfeed, reported the doctored image on Thursday and Friday.
Restoration PAC is led by Doug Truax, an Illinois businessman who ran unsuccessfully in 2014 for that state’s Republican nomination for U.S. Senate. On Wednesday, the super PAC released an ad airing in major Wisconsin TV markets, including Milwaukee, Madison and Green Bay. It praised Johnson’s views on foreign policy and Iran, and included an image of Obama shaking hands with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.
But there’s a problem: the handshake never happened. There was talk of the leaders meeting in person in 2013, but that meeting never materialized, as was widely reported at the time.
Restoration PAC spokesman Dan Curry said the image was widely circulated on the Internet, so the organization didn’t realize it was forged.
“There was no indication that it was a fake,” Curry said. “Out of an abundance of caution, we changed it. It’s no longer an issue if it was an issue.”