First Grandma Marian Robinson to Receive $160,000 Lifetime Pension-Fiction!
Summary of eRumor:
First Grandma Marian Robinson, the mother of First Lady Michelle Obama, will receive a $160,000 government pension for life.
False reports that Marian Robinson will receive a $160,000 government pension for life started with a fake news website.
The Boston Tribune started the rumor with a story that appeared under the headline, “First Grandma Marian Robinson to Receive Lifetime $160,000 Government Pension” on October 17h. The story begins:
Washington D.C. – First Grandma Marian Robinson, 79, will receive a lifetime 160K government pension when she leaves the White House next year, according to congressional budget statements.
According to documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), Mrs. Robinson earned the lifetime pension for “services rendered as full-time/in-home caregiver” for granddaughters Malia, 18, and Sasha, 15, during President Obama’s two terms in office.
In January of 2009, it was reported that Mrs. Robinson was living in the White House full-time to tend to her granddaughters. She was the first live-in grandmother at the White House since Elivera M. Doud, the mother of Mamie Eisenhower, during the Eisenhower Administration.
In reality, Marian Robinson is not, as the article claims, listed as child caregiver on the White House’s official staff registry. She hasn’t collected a salary during the President Obama’s time in office — and she won’t collect a lifetime pension after he leaves office.
Within days, however, the false report had been viewed 200,000 times. Angry readers commented about government waste and cronyism related to the so-called first grandma pension.
The Boston Tribune is a fake news website operated the fake news outfit Associated Media Coverage (email addresses listed on contact forms for both sites are the same).
We’ve investigated many fake news stories by Associated Media coverage, including (false) reports about nationwide motorcycle curfews and states passing “two pet maximum” ordinances.
For the record, government benefits for former presidents and first ladies are outlined in the Former Presidents Act. While presidents do, in fact, receive lifetime government pensions — the same cannot be said for former first ladies or first grandmas.