The Washington Post was forced to issue a statement on Wednesday morning after commuters were handed fake print copies of the newspaper with a headline claiming President Donald Trump had fled the White House.
“There are fake print editions of The Washington Post being distributed around downtown DC, and we are aware of a website attempting to mimic The Post’s,” the newspaper’s PR Twitter account wrote. “They are not Post products, and we are looking into this.”
“Unpresidented: Trump hastily departs White House, ending crisis,” the falsified front page headline read. Additionally, the tagline “Democracy Awakens in Action” appeared at the top of the paper instead of The Post’s usual “Democracy Dies in Darkness.” A website featuring digital editions of the made-up stories was also posted.
Several anti-Trump organizations were speculated to be behind the stunt, including liberal group Code Pink, which posted a video on Facebook of its owner, Medea Benjamin, passing out copies of the paper. However, “trickster activist collective” the Yes Men took credit for the paper, with a statement on its website saying it was created by authors Onnesha Roychoudhuri and L.A. Kauffman.
According to other anti-Trump articles in the paper, the reason for the president’s departure was a female-driven, multi-racial resistance. In one story, he fled to Yalta, Crimea, and left a resignation message written on a napkin in the Oval Office.
Other stories in the eight-page paper report Vice President Mike Pence being sworn in for a “clipped-duck” term, 64 new progressive bills proposed by the Democrats, and major news outlets saying “our bad” for Trump’s rise to power. Pictures Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ayanna Pressley, and Ilhan Omar appear in the political satire as leaders of the Democratic legislative push.