Sen. Katie Britt

Sen. Katie Britt (R-Ala.) delivers the GOP's response to President Joe Biden's State of the Union address on March 7, 2023.

(Photo: PBS/Screengrab)

'Beyond Misleading': Katie Britt Border Story Debunked With Bruising TikTok Takedown

"This is worth every minute," said one person who watched the 7-minute take down.

A freelance journalist is receiving widespread praise for his "must-see" critique of a story told by Alabama's Republican Senator Katie Britt during her official Republican Party response to President Joe Biden's State of the Union on Thursday night.

In the 7-minute and 23-second video posted to TikTok on Friday, reporter and book author Jonathan M. Katz deconstructs a key portion of Britt's speech, remarks overall that were widely panned as a "creepy" representation of the far-right, xenophobic, Christian nationalism that has found a home in Donald Trump's GOP.

The specific claim in question centers on Britt's telling of a story about a 12-year-old girl who suffered sexual violence, including rape, at the hands of drug cartels—but the details of the horrifying story, according to the facts established by Katz, reveal a clear effort to deceive those watching her speech.

"Holy moly... Jonathan Katz exposes Katie Britt as a lying sack of shit."

In the video, Katz says the facts he was able to determine about Britt's claims—which she delivered to millions of American viewers on Thursday night as the response was featured live on Fox News and countless live streams across the internet—was "beyond misleading."


"Holy moly. This is worth every minute," said writer Nick Knudsen after watching the video. "Jonathan Katz exposes Katie Britt as a lying sack of shit."

Because the woman he identified as the source of the story, a Mexican activist named Karla Jacinto Romero, has retold her personal history repeatedly in public, including in front of Congress, for years and explained that events described took place in Mexico between 2004 and 2008 when she was a child and George W. Bush was president, Katz slammed Britt for making it seem "as if this woman had confided something in her and as if she was describing actions that had taken place on or even near the U.S.-Mexico border during Joe Biden's presidency," which just isn't true based on the record.

"I don't know even know what to say," Katz remarks in the video, "except that it is just fundamentally dishonest."

The gut-wrenching story that Britt told to fearmonger over Biden's border policy and denigrate immigrants and asylum-seekers to right-wing voters and unsuspecting viewers, explains Katz, "didn't happen in the United States" and "it's not an example of something that happened recently and is not even an example of something that happened on the border, and certainly not something that happened under Joe Biden."

But why would she do that? "It's very clear to me," says Katz, that Britt was "trying to create an association in the people's mind between Joe Biden, the border, Mexicans... or people of Latin descent, and sexual violence. That's what she's going for and she's doing it on the basis of what you can only say is just an out and out lie."

Katz said Friday he reached out to Britt's office for some kind of explanation but had yet to hear back. He said he would update his post if he learned more from the Senator or her office, "But for now it just looks like she got on national television and lied about something really horrific and really important for her own personal and her party's political gain."

The Washington Post later confirmed with Sean Ross, a spokesperson in Britt's office, that the women referred to during Thursday night's speech was Karla Jacinto Romero, but disputed anything about the senator's language was misleading.

But many who had watched Katz's seemed much more convinced of his case and others condemned Britt for exploiting Romero's story for cynical and deceptive political gain.

Josh Marshall, editor-in-chief of TalkingPointsMemo, congratulated Katz on the "amazing" piece and said the video revealed that Britt is "not only an emotionally disregulated freak, but a big fat liar."

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