Fact check: Is President Biden ‘giving smartphones away’ to people who’ve crossed the border illegally?

Our weekly check-in with the Texas Truth-O-Meter.

By Andy Nguyen, PolitiFact; radio interview with Nusaiba Mizan, PolitiFact Texas/Austin American-Statesman; produced by Alexandra HartApril 20, 2022 4:02 pm, , , ,

From PolitiFact:

A tool used by the government to track people who entered the country illegally is being mischaracterized on social media as a smartphone giveaway.

Conservative pundit Nick Adams shared a post April 11 featuring a screenshot of his own tweet from the previous week.

“Joe Biden is giving smartphones away to illegal border crossers,” Adams said. “This is an impeachable offense.”

Former Trump attorney Jay Sekulow and son Jordan discussed the smartphones on their Facebook show. The Sekulows said the phones would be used for “tracking” but they suggested that immigrants who cross the border into the United States illegally are given something akin to an iPhone by the federal government for personal use.

That misses context about the capabilities of these devices and exactly how they will be used.

Although smartphones are being distributed to immigrants, their purpose and usability is very limited. Immigration officials are issuing the phones so they can monitor immigrants released from custody; the phones cannot be used for other purposes, like going on Facebook or calling friends…

Read the full story and see how Adams’ claim scored at PolitiFact, and listen to an interview with PolitiFact Texas’ Nusaiba Mizan in the audio player above.

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