Hospital Photo of John Fetterman Goes Viral, But There's Just 1 Problem: 'This Is Insane'
A photo of Pennsylvania’s Democratic Sen. John Fetterman began making the rounds Friday after he was finally seen in public since being admitted to Walter Reed Medical Center five weeks ago which had many wondering just what the heck was going on.
Fetterman was admitted to Walter Reed in mid-February to be treated for depression. It was the second time that month he was hospitalized since he was admitted earlier when he reported feeling lightheaded.
But the second trip to the facility was far more serious as it was soon reported that he was diagnosed with “clinical depression.”
After weeks in the hospital without much news reported on his condition and practically no video or photos of his recovery, Fetterman was released Friday as his staff published photos of his release. But one photo in particular that became prevalent on social media had a lot of people questioning the senator’s actual condition.
Two photos of Fetterman seen side-by-side had some wondering if the senator had been replaced by a body double, as Newsweek reported.
Juanita Broaddrick was shocked by the two photos and insisted, “I think a DNA sample is in order, here. LOL. That’s not Fetterman on the right.”
I think a DNA sample is in order, here. LOL. That’s not Fetterman on the right. pic.twitter.com/FpcS2FLK0m
— Juanita Broaddrick (@atensnut) March 24, 2023
Author Brigitte Gabriel added, “I’m not one to push conspiracy theories, but John Fetterman’s face looks totally different.”
I’m not one to push conspiracy theories, but John Fetterman’s face looks totally different. pic.twitter.com/vQspwIOY0m
— Brigitte Gabriel (@ACTBrigitte) March 24, 2023
Attorney Jason Roberge speculated that “They literally replaced Fetterman, this is insane.”
They literally replaced fetterman, this is insane https://t.co/UkTBhQcKov
— Jason Roberge (@JasonRobergeVA) March 24, 2023
Popular conservative Twitter account Catturd2 also chimed in quipping that Fetterman got a “total head replacement.”
It’s a miracle … In only 3 weeks, John Fetterman got a total head replacement.
Man, he has some good doctors. pic.twitter.com/MYRQF4mcGb
— Catturd ™ (@catturd2) March 24, 2023
A myriad of others made similar claims on social media. But there was just one problem with the photo of the hoodie-clad senator that caused so many to ruminate over a body double scenario. That photo is a year old and was taken before some of his most recent medical setbacks, it was not taken on Friday when he was released from the hospital.
A tweet by Fetterman’s wife from May of last year shows the senator and his wife in the same clothing as they are wearing in the disputed photo.
João is headed home ❤️ time to rest and recover (and annoy me)!
I’m so grateful for the amazing staff at Lancaster General for taking such good care of him from start to finish. ❤️ pic.twitter.com/cAzFY8ojQe
— Gisele Barreto Fetterman (@giselefetterman) May 22, 2022
So, clearly, the photo being bandied about social media this weekend is not a new photo of Fetterman.
But it can’t surprise anyone that such a conspiracy theory was so very easy to believe. For much of the last two months, Fetterman’s senate office has been far from transparent on the man’s real health status. The lack of updates caused the state’s Republican Party to call for some sort of proof of life to show that Fetterman might remain able to carry out his duties.
After delivering near radio silence on Fetterman’s health for weeks, the senator’s staff was finally forced to release a photo update about his health, but the proof of life only consisted of a few still photos, and there was no video or audio, so many felt the update was suspect.
Meanwhile, his wife was reported as having run off to Canada at one point and seen “fighting an apartment fire” at another as if she hadn’t a care in the world that her beloved husband was fighting for his sanity in a hospital. It was all pretty odd behavior.
Fetterman’s staff was also hit with accusations of hypocrisy after an old tweet by Chief of Staff Adam Jentleson resurfaced showing Jentleson attacking then President Donald Trump as not mentally fit to serve as president, yet now he is working for a senator who was actually hospitalized over his mental troubles.
With all this, it is no wonder that a conspiracy theory over a set of photos was so easy for everyone to believe. This complete lack of transparency fueled such wild speculation. After all, people have felt like they’ve been lied to about Fetterman since before he won his seat.
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