Facebook has censored a story published by The Washington Free Beacon detailing the Biden administration’s funding of crack pipes.
The Washington Free Beacon published an article Monday titled “Biden Admin To Fund Crack Pipe Distribution To Advance ‘Racial Equity’” which claimed the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) was providing funds for “smoking kits/supplies” as part of a “harm reduction” approach to drug use. An HHS spokesperson told the Free Beacon that the smoking kits contained pipes for users to smoke drugs, including crack cocaine.
As of Wednesday afternoon, Facebook is censoring posts that contain the Free Beacon’s story. When a user attempts to post a link to the story, a warning message that includes a link to a Lead Stories fact-check appears saying the article contains “partly false information” and that the story was “checked by independent fact-checkers.”
Blatant misinformation. The Harm Reduction grant is designed to help folks struggling with substance use stay healthy and safe, prevent overdose death. The grants must stick to federal, state, local laws or regs. https://t.co/HXRCrEM3tD
— Sarah Lovenheim (@HHS_Spox) February 8, 2022
Lead Stories’ fact-check does not find any factual inaccuracies with the Free Beacon’s story, but instead argues the article contains contradicting claims.
Lead Stories also cites a tweet from HHS spokeswoman Sarah Lowenheim, in which she called comments from Republican Florida Sen. Marco Rubio claiming the Biden administration is “sending free meth & crack pipes” to minority communities “blatant misinformation,” as at odds with the Free Beacon’s reporting. However, the Free Beacon never claimed the Biden administration was sending communities drugs.
JACQUI TIME on @PatrickHauf's reporting: "HHS…put out a statement clarifying…reports that crack pipes…would not be part of the safe smoking kits…But can you clarify…were they never a part of the kit? Or were they removed in response to this reporting[?]" pic.twitter.com/RnjRejzViL
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) February 9, 2022
The fact-checker goes on to cite another Lowenheim tweet, in which she claims “HHS is not distributing crack pipes,” as evidence that the Free Beacon store is partly false. This claim is in contradiction with what another HHS spokesperson reportedly told the Free Beacon.
Following the publication of Lead Stories’ fact-check, White House press secretary Jen Psaki condemned the Free Beacon’s story as “inaccurate reporting” on Wednesday, claiming the Biden administration does not fund the distribution of crack pipes.
Facebook did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.