For months, conservatives have pushed debunked conspiracy theories that Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton was seriously ill. Now, a new conspiracy claims that Clinton is using some sort of "booster drug" (video below).
Author Ed Klein, who has written numerous anti-Clinton books, told "Fox & Friends' on Oct. 25 that an unidentified White House "source" had told him that President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama believe Clinton is using performance-enhancing drugs to mask a supposed mystery illness.
Klein recalled that his "source" said that Clinton could not stop coughing during a recent visit to the White House, and the president had one of his doctors examine her:
So afterward, the president, and the first lady, and a guest started to discuss Hillary’s health. And they decided that there was no way that the Hillary that they saw that day was the same Hillary that the public is seeing in the debates and in her rallies.
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There's clearly a difference. She was not a well woman when she was in front of them, and suddenly she’s as fit as a fiddle when she’s in public. And they decided she must be on some kind of booster drug.
"Oh my goodness," exclaimed "Fox & Friends" co-host Steve Doocy who went on to recall instances of Clinton coughing, which led Klein to add:
It was compulsive, she couldn't stop coughing ... several minutes ... It was so bad that they had to call the doctor in. Obama, Michelle and Valerie Jarrett left the Oval Office so the doctor could administer to Hillary, and then Hillary left looking awful.
That night in the family quarters, Hillary, Barack, Michelle, and Valerie Jarrett with a guest, who was staying overnight at the Lincoln bedroom, discussed her health. Michelle said she was convinced that Hillary had to be on some sort of stimulant drug in order to make it through this campaign.
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Klein added that there was gossip that Clinton took performance-enhancing drugs for the debate, and added, "But now we have the Oval Office, the president and the first lady saying they're convinced that she is on something."
As a matter of record, there is no actual proof that the conversations that Klein alleges ever took place.
The Daily Beast noted on Oct. 5 that Klein repeatedly uses unidentified sources for his anti-Clinton books, and manufactures thoughts and dialogue:
To use Edward Klein’s own journalistic practices when writing about his work is to produce colorful narrative fiction with only the smallest connection to reality—the characters are real people, their titles and roles unchanged, but the content of their personalities, their conversations, and their thoughts invented from whole cloth. Klein’s work is propaganda as fan fiction...
Klein’s political opinions are not the problem with his books or even their defining characteristic—that would be that he just makes shit up, and it’s not even good.
Media Matters cited several instances when Fox News, The Washington Examiner and Rush Limbaugh questioned and/or dismissed Klein's claims.