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NOT REAL NEWS: GOP official posts inaccurate Ford photo

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — A photo of a young girl that a Republican official in North Carolina used to mock Christine Blasey Ford, who has accused Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault, is an image that has appeared online for several years. It is not Ford.

Cabarrus County GOP chairman Lanny Lancaster shared the photo of a girl wearing large glasses and braces on his Facebook page, with the comment: “This is the alleged sexual assault victim. Wow.” Ford’s legal team confirmed that the photo was not of her, but declined further comment.

The post drew sharp criticism. Frank McNeill, a Democratic candidate for Congress in North Carolina’s 8th District, called it an “assault on the safety and dignity of American women” in an email newsletter.

Lancaster defended his use of the photo. “The media wants you to think she was a beautiful young lady who was on her way home from the tennis courts,” Lancaster told The News & Observer of Raleigh. “I just wanted you to see the real person. I wanted people to see that this is really her.”

The Daily Mail online used the photo in their worst yearbook photos list in 2012, saying it came from Worldwideinterweb. About the same time, users began using the photo to create posts on meme generator sites, with captions such as “Bad Luck Brenda” or “Bridget.”

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