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Hoax Alert

Fake News: Nancy Pelosi's Husband Did NOT File for Divorce, Did NOT Say 'I just Can't Take It Anymore'

  • by: Maarten Schenk
  • (Sun, 31 Mar 2019 21:42:40 Z)

Did Nancy Pelosi's 4th husband file for divorce saying he just can't take it anymore? No, that's not true: Pelosi only married once and she is still married. The story was made up by a liberal satire weblog that tries to get gullible Republicans and Trump supporters to like and share ridiculous stories proving they don't actually read the article behind the headline and attempting to teach them something about being critical about internet news in the process.

The story originated from an article published on Taters Gonna Tate on March 21, 2019 titled "Nancy Pelosi's 4th Husband Files for Divorce: 'I just Can't Take It Anymore'" (archived here) which opened:

Nancy Pelosi will be in divorce court for a fourth time later this month, to settle her marital disputes with her current husband, Chester McNally Pelosi. Chester claims that Pelosi's rules are too strict and that he simply can not handle the constant relapses into alcoholism.

In a statement released through his lawyer, Art Tubolls, Mr. Pelosi said:

"I am the 4th man forced to take the name Pelosi to marry a woman not only drunk most of the time, but also drunk on power. Upon marrying nancy one must sign away his right to have a life for the good of her career. Plus, she drinks too much. In the evenings, her work is all we talk about until she starts drinking and then she gets mean."

Screenshot of https://tatersgonnatate.com/nancy-pelosis-4th-husband-files-for-divorce-i-just-cant-take-it-anymore/

Users on social media only saw this title, description and thumbnail:

Nancy Pelosi's 4th Husband Files for Divorce: 'I just Can't Take It Anymore'

She's destined to be alone.

Pelosi's husband is named Paul Frank Pelosi (not "Chester McNally") and the couple have five children and nine grandchildren. The name of the lawyer mentioned in the story ("Art Tubolls") is an anagram for "Busta Troll", the nickname of the owner of the site. And there are several other satire disclaimers and hints plastered over the page, for example the category the story was posted under ("Pelosi's Satirical Bout with Alcoholism").

The site is part of the "America's Last Line of Defense" network of satire websites run byself-professed liberal troll Christopher Blair from Maine and his partner in crime John Prager along with a loose confederation of friends and allies. Blair has been in a feud with fact checking website Snopes for some time now and has also criticized other fact checkers in the past who labeled his work "fake news" instead of satire. In reaction to this he has recently rebranded all his active websites and Facebook pages so they carry extremely visible disclaimers everywhere.

Every site in the network has an about page that reads (in part):

About Satire
Before you complain and decide satire is synonymous with "comedy":

sat·ire
ˈsaˌtī(ə)r
noun
The use of humor, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose and criticize people's stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.

Everything on this website is fiction. It is not a lie and it is not fake news because it is not real. If you believe that it is real, you should have your head examined. Any similarities between this site's pure fantasy and actual people, places, and events are purely coincidental and all images should be considered altered and satirical. See above if you're still having an issue with that satire thing.

Articles from Blair's sites frequently get copied by "real" fake news sites who often omit the satire disclaimer and any other hints the stories are fake. Blair has tried to get these sites shut down in the past but new ones keep cropping up.

Blair and his operation were profiled by the Washington Post on November 17, 2018 by Eli Saslow:

'Nothing on this page is real': How lies become truth in online America

November 17 The only light in the house came from the glow of three computer monitors, and Christopher Blair, 46, sat down at a keyboard and started to type. His wife had left for work and his children were on their way to school, but waiting online was his other community, an unreality where nothing was exactly as it seemed.

If you are interested in learning more about Blair and the history of his sites, here is something to get you started:

The Ultimate Christopher Blair and America's Last Line of Defense Reading List | Lead Stories

STORY UPDATED: check for updates below. Yesterday Eli Saslow at the Washington Post wrote a fantastic article about Christopher Blair, a man from Maine who has been trolling conservatives and Trump supporters online for years and occasionally even made a living out of it.

If you see one of his stories on a site that does not contain a satire disclaimer, assume it is fake news. If you do see the satire disclaimer it is of course also fake news.

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About the author:

Maarten Schenk is our resident expert on fake news and hoax websites. He likes to go beyond just debunking trending fake news stories and is endlessly fascinated by the dazzling variety of psychological and technical tricks used by the people and networks who intentionally spread made-up things on the internet.  He can often be found at conferences and events about fake news, disinformation and fact checking when he is not in his office in Belgium monitoring and tracking the latest fake article to go viral.

Read more about or contact Maarten Schenk
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Lead Stories uses the Trendolizer™ engine to detect the most trending stories from known fake news, satire and prank websites and tries to debunk them as fast as possible. Read more about how we work and how we select stories to check here.

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