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Brother of Georgia SOS is not a Chinese tech firm executive

December 31, 2020 GMT

CLAIM: Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger has a brother, Ron, who works for a Chinese tech firm, Huawei.

AP’S ASSESSMENT: False. Raffensperger’s office confirmed to The Associated Press his brother is not Ron Raffensperger who works for Huawei.

THE FACTS: Social media posts and a fictitious story circulating online falsely claim that Raffensperger has a brother named Ron, who works as an executive for the Chinese tech giant Huawei.

Raffensperger does not have a brother named Ron, his office confirmed Wednesday. His office said he has three sisters and a brother. A 2018 family obituary the AP reviewed also confirms his brother is not named Ron.

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Social media posts making the false claim suggest that the relationship should be investigated because of the Huawei connection. The company has been at the center of rising tensions between the U.S. and Chinese over technology security. President Donald Trump’s administration has imposed restrictions on the Chinese company, cutting off its access to U.S. components and technology.

Trump also tweeted out the false claim about Raffensperger’s brother on Tuesday night.

“Now it turns out that Brad R’s brother works for China and they definitely don’t want “Trump”. So disgusting!” Trump said in his inaccurate tweet.

Raffensperger, who oversees Georgia’s elections, has been the target of death threats and misinformation since President Donald Trump’s presidential race loss in Georgia by more than 11,000 votes.

A spokesman for Huawei did not immediately respond to AP’s request for comment.

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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: https://www.facebook.com/help/1952307158131536