Charlie Kirk Reads Messages From Georgians Bragging About Not Voting?

On December 8 2022, two Imgur accounts shared screenshots of a popular tweet which claimed that right-wing pundit and disinformation purveyor Charlie Kirk spent the first hour of his online show “reading emails from his listeners who said they didn’t vote in Georgia because they believe there’s too much fraud”:

One of the Imgur posts included an image based caption: “Classic ‘leopards ate my face’ moment by the Republicans.” That phrase was online political slang derived from a viral October 2015 tweet mentioning the “Leopards Eating People’s Faces Party”:

Fact Check

Claim: On December 7 2022, Charlie Kirk read out several emails from voters in Georgia, stating that they elected not to vote because no longer trust elections.

Description: The claim suggests that Charlie Kirk, a right-wing talk show host, broadcasted emails from his listeners, who are presumably registered voters in Georgia. These individuals reportedly stated that they chose not to participate in voting due to their eroding trust in the election process.


Rating Explanation: This claim is derived from direct statements made by Charlie Kirk during his show and tweets he posted, including one that featured the content of an email from a listener expressing their decision not to vote. The ensuing interaction and responses from his followers further substantiate the claim.

That analogy rapidly became shorthand on social media, leading to the creation of the popular subreddit r/LeopardsAteMyFace. One repeated example type involved supporters of former United States President Donald Trump whose loved ones were deported under his immigration policies:

The December 7 2022 tweet by Madeline Peltz of liberal media analysis site Media Matters for America (MMFA) referenced an episode of Kirk’s show airing at the time the tweet was published. As Peltz indicated, Kirk read out several emails from people claiming to be registered voters in Georgia disclosing their decision to not participate in the December 2022 Georgia runoff election between the Democratic Party’s Raphael Warnock and the GOP’s Herschel Walker.

Peltz also tweeted a segment of Kirk’s show where he attempted to sell voting to an audience which had been consistently advised, and for years on end, that the process was corrupt. In it, Kirk claimed he briefly pondered whether his vote “matters” before casting it:

Kirk read from several emails in the first half-hour of the show. One emailer said they “proudly” didn’t vote, because “every vote is a vote for a corrupt decision,” and another voter claimed that they persuaded many fellow Republicans not to vote — and they were “cheering for a collapse” of the United States.

More than one email sender accused Kirk of being a “RINO,” or a “Republican In Name Only,” a popular epithet among the far right; Kirk also read an email from someone who said Republicans “need to wake up” because “they” (presumably, but not necessarily, referring to Democrats) “have perfected cheating.” A visibly exasperated Kirk then tried to reconcile years of efforts to erode public trust in elections with energizing registered Republicans to vote, claiming that Republicans had suffered a net loss of 700,000 votes based on two previous elections.

Roughly 25 minutes in, Kirk read and responded to several emails on-air, trying to convince his listeners that the constant drumbeat of falsehoods undermining voting could co-exist with healthy voter turnout:

I’m all for fixing mail-in ballots, signature verification, the machines, all that stuff … someone says here, “it’s not the people’s fault [turnout was poor], we highly respect you …”

It is the people’s fault if you don’t show up and vote, and you allow cynicism to take over your whole attitude … by the way, how are you going to fix elections if you’re not in political power?

Someone says “Charlie, how can we compete with the Democrats of getting ballots?” Well, showing up to vote and at least pretending you believe in the system would be helpful.”

It was not necessary to watch Kirk’s December 7 2022 to observe his listeners rejecting his pleas about voting. Kirk shared at least one screenshot of an email he read on the air, and replies showed evidence of a sustained lack of faith in American elections:

Kirk was briefly mentioned in a December 8 2022 piece about Republican losses in 2022. Other party voices expressed the same frustration about how years of messaging appeared to have backfired:

“Republican states are rightly taking steps to ensure elections are safe and secure. Our problem now is a messaging and operational one. We start by throwing out the Trump B.S. lies and telling people the truth about their votes and the power of their vote,” said a Republican strategist who worked on the Georgia midterm election. “Who would have imagined telling people, ‘the election is rigged’ and then asking them to vote wouldn’t work?”


“Republicans spent an inordinate amount of time complaining about and suing over election rules,” said Kevin McLaughlin, the former Executive Director of the National Republican Senatorial Committee for the 2020 election cycle and director of GOP-aligned nonprofit the Common Sense Leadership Fund. “Imagine how effective we would be if we spent even half that time developing a strategy, and, call me crazy, turning out voters.”

Peltz’s viral tweet described the belief there was “too much fraud” as “a message [prospective Republican voters] heard on the Charlie Kirk show.” A November 30 2022 Alternet piece published before the Georgia runoff linked to 2020 tweets by Kirk questioning the integrity of elections.

A search for “rigged”  and “ballots” in tweets by Kirk returned similar commentary:

Several of the tweets above were from November and December 2020, as former U.S. President Donald Trump falsely claimed over and over that the election had been rigged in order to cause his loss. In addition to parroting the claims, Kirk repeatedly urged followers to retweet his comments.

A December 2022 reply to Kirk (above) referenced ballots “dumped” in the middle of the night. On November 6 2020, Kirk tweeted the exact same claim about the 2020 election:

A popular December 7 2022 tweet claimed that right-wing talk show host Charlie Kirk “spent the first hour of his show reading emails from his listeners who said they didn’t vote in Georgia because they believe there’s too much fraud, a message they heard on the Charlie Kirk show.” Kirk not only read the emails out, but tweeted at least one of the emails. In response, Kirk’s followers commonly claimed they no longer had faith in elections, and so they would not vote.

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