It's early election day, but the misinformation brokers on the internet are already working hard.
As millions of voters entered the polls, social media posts surfaced early Tuesday morning with false or misleading claims from battlefield states like Pennsylvania and Michigan. Much of these claims followed the well-known misinformation we expected on election day: viral videos of broken voting machines, allegations of fishy polling station behavior, and fake or exaggerated claims of attempted suppression of voters.
In Philadelphia, election officials debunked a misleading claim made by a Twitter user who posted a photo of a Democratic billboard at a polling station. The original misleading tweet, from a reporter on right-wing Newsmax website, was shared more than 7,000 times.
Several viral tweets have also spread unconfirmed rumors of long queues at polling stations in Republican districts, broken voting machines in Republican districts, or other attempts to suppress votes for President Trump. Many of these posts were tagged with the hashtag #StopTheSteal.
Not all misinformation was sent online. In Michigan, Attorney General Dana Nessel wrote on Twitter that she had received reports of robocalls made to Flint residents with inaccurate information about when to vote.