Who is Theodore Barrett’s wife? Is she real?

Theodore Barrett

Theodore Barrett, seemingly a Deputy White House Press Secretary, has gone viral for his deadpan revelation of his wife’s death before reporters inside the White House. In the clip, Barrett seems unbothered by his wife’s death and frustrated by the reporters’ insistence on asking about her. 

“We can’t just bring the entire nation to a halt because of it [his wife’s death],” Barrett says, insisting that his priority is serving the President and the nation. “There’s nothing I’d like more than to drop down behind this podium and weep, but I can’t do this,” Barrett says

“Why? Because I am a grown man, I’ve got a job to do and so do you.” Barrett concludes by mentioning that his two kids were in the car accident that killed their mom. 

Theodore Barrett and his wife are not real people

The clip showing Theodore Barrett talking dismissively about his wife’s death is fake. Records show that nobody named Theodore Barrett has ever worked as Deputy White House Press Secretary. 

Further, the March 2008 clip was initially posted by The Onion, a satirical news outlet, affirming that it is fake. In February 2017, the outlet’s founder, Scott Dikkers, told a crowd at Marquette University not to misidentify satire as fake news. 

“It [The Onion] is satire,” Dikkers said. “It’s totally different from fake news, and it bothers me when those fake news organizations are basically out there printing lies or propaganda label themselves satire.”