Last week, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser tweeted about the “three things” D.C. residents would need to have with them “before heading out”:

Conservatives pounced, of course. Among the pouncers were Sen. Marsha Blackburn:

And Sen. Ron Johnson:

Well, once Blackburn and Johnson got involved, it was time for CNN to step in and set the record straight. So that’s what Daniel Dale did:

Fact-checking whose false claims, CNN? Bowser’s?


Two Republican senators amplified Bowser’s tweet in their own tweets. If they had clicked the link to get more information, however, they did not show it.

Facts First: Washington is not requiring photo ID or proof of Covid-19 vaccination from everyone leaving their home or from people buying groceries like milk. The new policy exempts grocery stores and other retail establishments, and it does not apply to people who are merely venturing outside their homes.

Rather, the policy requires people age 18 or older to show photo ID and proof of vaccination when entering certain indoor establishments: restaurants, bars, food halls and food courts, nightclubs, breweries, entertainment venues, exercise facilities and meeting facilities. (The policy says that people who are entering even these establishments for certain brief stops — to use a restroom, to pay, to pick up or place an order, or to get to an outdoor area — are not required to show proof of vaccination, but they must still wear masks while inside.)

It’s not hard to find the list of places covered by the policy: it is visible to anyone who visits the page to which Bowser tweeted a link. And clicking a link that is prominently featured on that page, in turn, brings up a document with even more details — such as the fact that grocery stores are exempt. (Someone who wanted to get milk at a non-exempt establishment like a restaurant or food court would have to show ID first, but Blackburn tweeted a much broader suggestion that people would generally need ID to buy milk in the city.)

So, if we’re understanding Dale correctly, because Bowser’s incorrect tweet also contained a link to a page with accurate information, it’s really Blackburn and Johnson we should be holding responsible for spreading false information.

Of course he doesn’t lead the fact-check with that. Because if he did, he’d have to acknowledge that Muriel Bowser is ultimately responsible for the spread of misinformation.

All in a day’s work for CNN’s star fact-checker.

They’re not f*cking kidding you; they … are CNN.

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