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PolitiFact FL: Line-dancing legislators in video were in Florida, not Congress

People dancing.
The Florida Channel
Florida lawmakers dance before the start of the legislative session on May 2, 2023.

WLRN has partnered with PolitiFact to fact-check Florida politicians. The Pulitzer Prize-winning team seeks to present the true facts, unaffected by agenda or biases.

A group of about 100 migrants breached razor wire and overran Texas National Guard members March 21 in El Paso, in a chaotic scene captured on video.

One social media user juxtaposed that video with another video of politicians dancing in a March 21 Instagram post to make a point about Congress.

"Our borders are wide open and this is what they’re doing in Congress," the post’s caption said. "El Paso is being overrun while our elected officials dance at work."

The post was flagged as part of Meta’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram.)

Instagram screenshot

It’s possible that the comparison was meant as a metaphor, but people commenting on the post took it quite literally. "That’s your Democratic party," one person said. "Get rid of them all," said another.

We found other social media posts using the dancing video in a similar fashion.

But the video does not show legislators dancing in the halls of Congress. It was taken May 2, 2023, in the Florida House.

The video has been the subject of misinformation before. In May, PolitiFact examined a TikTok claim that the video showed Florida legislators dancing after passing an anti-trans bill.

That wasn’t true, either.

Rep. Anna Eskamani, D-Orlando, told PolitiFact then that music is often played on the state House floor before legislative sessions.

May 2 was "Boots Day," she said, and lawmakers were encouraged to wear boots. Legislators danced in the House chamber’s center aisle to the "Cha Cha Slide" and "Cupid Shuffle," but not in response to any votes, Eskamani said.

In Congress, meanwhile, both chambers have bickered in recent months over border funding legislation.

Senate Republicans blocked a wide-ranging bipartisan border security and foreign aid package in February after former President Donald Trump criticized the deal and House Speaker Mike Johnson said it would be "dead on arrival" if it reached the House.

On March 22, the House passed a $1.2 trillion spending bill to avoid a partial government shutdown and fund the government through September. As of this writing, the Senate had not acted on the bill, which must pass by midnight March 23 to avoid a shutdown. The bill includes additional money for border security, The New York Times reported.

Although legislators haven’t reached agreement on a border bill, there’s no evidence that they were dancing in the halls of Congress. The claim is False.

Our Sources

Jeff Cercone is a staff writer for PolitiFact.