Stephen King Apologizes for Tweeting Fake News About Ron DeSantis But Doesn’t Delete Tweet

TODAY -- Pictured: Stephen King appears on NBC News' "Today" show -- (Photo by: Peter Kramer/NBC/NBC NewsWire)
Peter Kramer/NBC/NBC Newswire/NBCUniversal via Getty Images

Stephen King is sorry, not sorry for spreading fake news about Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R).

The bestselling novelist has publicly apologized for tweeting a false claim that Gov. DeSantis signed a bill requiring Florida students and professors to register their political views with the state. The erroneous claim appears to have come from a Salon article from last year that recently went viral.

“I regret having posted the headline without being more confident the story was correct. Salon is usually more reliable. Twitter is a constant learning experience, and I will try to do better,” the author said in a statement to CNN.

But as of Friday mid-afternoon, King has still failed to delete the tweet, which he posted on Tuesday to his more than 6 million followers. Nor has Twitter visibly flagged the post in any way.

The original 2021 Salon headline erroneously stated: “DeSantis signs bill requiring Florida students, professors to register political views with state.”

The law in question requires public colleges and universities in Florida to perform annual surveys on the subject of “intellectual freedom and viewpoint diversity” but participation in the survey is entirely voluntary.

Salon only revised the headline this week despite efforts last year by DeSantis spokesperson Christina Pushaw to get the publication to run a correction. The left-wing CNN and Politifact also ran fact-checks debunking the claim.

DeSantis nemesis and Florida gubernatorial candidate Nikki Fried (D) also tweeted the false claim, but has since deleted her post.

This isn’t the first time Stephen King has tweeted fake news about Florida and then failed to delete the incorrect tweet.

As Breitbart News reported, the novelist incorrectly claimed last year that the state  had 1,200 COVID-19 deaths in just one day in an apparent confusion between reported deaths and actual deaths that occurred that day.

King was referring to reports of the latest CDC figures for Florida, showing an increase of 1,296 deaths on a Thursday from the total reported a day earlier. The figure doesn’t represent deaths that occurred on that Thursday but rather deaths over an undefined period that can go back weeks.

The novelist still hasn’t deleted his incorrect tweet from last year.

Follow David Ng on Twitter @HeyItsDavidNg. Have a tip? Contact me at


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.