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Lapels tell the story, flag pins were worn at Democratic presidential debate

July 5, 2019 GMT

CLAIM: Not a single Democratic presidential candidate wore an American flag lapel pin during the first round of Democratic debates.

AP’S ASSESSMENT: False. Several of the 20 candidates running for president wore American flag pins.

THE FACTS: A total of six Democratic presidential candidates pinned an American flag on their lapels for the Democratic debates, which were broadcast live June 26 and 27. Video footage and photos show that Vice President Joe Biden, former Maryland Congressman John Delaney, Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan and entrepreneur Andrew Yang wore flag pins.  


Posts circulating on Facebook and Twitter use the false claim to suggest that the lack of American flags on the debate stage illustrates the Democratic Party is unpatriotic. 

June was the first time 2020 Democratic presidential candidates gathered for a televised debate. It was held in Miami. The next Democratic debates are slated for July 30 and 31 in Detroit.


This is part of The Associated Press’ ongoing effort to fact-check misinformation that is shared widely online, including work with Facebook to identify and reduce the circulation of false stories on the platform.

Here’s more information on Facebook’s fact-checking program: