American States ‘That Wish to Join Russia Will Be Considered,’ Says Duma Member

On October 11 2022, a post with the headline “U.S. States That Wish to Join Russia Will Be Considered, Says Duma Member” appeared on Reddit’s r/worldnews:

Commenters initially debated the legality of any American states seceding. As for the post, it linked to what appeared at first to be the sole English-language source for the claim, an article from, which reported:

Fact Check

Claim: In October 2022, a member of Russia’s Duma said that American states “will be considered” if they wish to “join Russia.”

Description: The claim is about a statement made by a Russian Duma member, reportedly welcoming any U.S. states that wish to secede and join Russia. This claim appeared in various news articles and was based on a comment on an online poll suggesting some Americans wanted their states to break away from the U.S. The authenticity of the poll or the direct comment from the Duma member could not be fully authenticated.

Rating: Unknown

Rating Explanation: The claim has received a substantial amount of attention, but there is no direct evidence supporting the exact statement from the Duma member or the precise details of the poll. Therefore, the claim is rated as largely uncertain due to lack of substantial evidence.

A senior member of the state Duma, Russia’s parliament, said that any U.S. states that want to break away from the country and instead join the Russian Federation will be considered.


State Duma deputy Alexander Tolmachev was responding to an [unspecified] online poll that [purportedly] showed that some Americans wanted their states to break free from the U.S.

If Americans vote to secede some states from the country and express a desire to join Russia, Moscow will consider it, Tolmachev told Russian news site Podmoskovye Segodnya.

We were initially unable to locate the poll referenced by The site obtained a comment about the general legality of secession from a law professor at the University Virginia School of Law, Cynthia Nicoletti:

“States can’t unilaterally secede from the U.S. … This was established both by the outcome of our Civil War and by the Supreme Court in the 1869 case Texas v. White. Article I, section 10 of the Constitution also prohibits states from entering into alliances, treaties, or confederations … I suppose theoretically it’s an open question as to whether a state could secede with the consent of Congress or with the consent of all the other states …”

Google News primarily returned the piece. Additional searching eventually led to an October 10 2022 post from far right disinformation purveyor, “Moscow Official: American States Pursuing Secession Can Join Russia.” offered a link with the word “poll,” in a manner that could be most charitably described as “loosely.” If the linked information — a tweet — was the “poll” in question, it was more of a random question posed by a Twitter user with the “poll” function enabled:

Of just under 3,700 votes, the tweet received a little over 80 percent in “yes” votes to 20 percent in “no” votes. referenced a comment “under the poll,” but we were unable to locate it in the limited replies to the tweet; as such, it is possible that and referenced different “polls.”

We tracked down two additional articles referencing’s claim, both published on October 11 2022. One was published by the UK’s Independent, and another was published by the right-wing Daily Caller.

None of the individual items linked directly that specific poll or polls, and none linked to the Russian news source named in the article (Podmoskovye Segodnya). Our attempts to locate the unlinked source material were unsuccessful.

An October 10 2022 item, “U.S. States That Wish to Join Russia Will Be Considered …,” reported that a member of Russia’s Parliament (Duma) welcomed American states wishing to secede. The claim was picked up and re-reported several times, but we were unable to substantiate it. However, given the number of people reported to be fleeing Russia, it is possible that this is a sincere request.