Description: Viral image
Circulating since: Jan. 2012
Analysis: This juxtaposition of images delivers a powerful political message contrasting President Barack Obama, portrayed as a regular guy casually fist-bumping a janitor, with Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, presented as a man of wealth and privilege indulging in what appears to be an impromptu shoeshine on an airport tarmac.
While the photos are real, however, their implied message is undercut by one simple fact: a closer look at the photo of Romney reveals he's undergoing a pre-flight security screening, not having his shoes shined. It was taken at the San Diego Airport just before Romney boarded a plane to Denver for a campaign event on Feb. 1, 2008.
Sources and further reading:
Photo of Romney's 'Shoe Shine' Actually Shows Shows Security Check
NPR.org, 13 January 2012
Pres. Obama Fist Bumps Custodian Lawrence Lipscomb
Corbis Images, 3 December 2009
2008: The Year in Pictures
NY Daily News, 1 January 2009
Last updated 10/19/12