Joe Biden Fact-Checked Again For Repeating Tall Tales – President Joe Biden raised eyebrows on Wednesday for comments he made during an address in the East Room of the White House, where he told the children in attendance “Daddy owes you,” and invited them to join him on an ice cream run.
The off-script remark came as the president marked the first anniversary of the Inflation Reduction Act.
“I want to say one thing to your children. I know some really great ice cream places around here and Daddy owes you, okay, so talk to me afterwards,” Biden was heard in a clip that has made the rounds on social media. It received much mockery, with many of the president’s critics suggesting it was “creepy.”
The president’s love of ice cream is almost legendary, while he has been criticized in the past for his “off-color” comments that have been directed at young people.
The Tall Tales Continue for Joe Biden
The East Room comments also came just a day after Biden repeated three false claims about his past in a speech on Tuesday in Milwaukee, also to tout the Inflation Reduction Act.
President Biden has long liked to be a storyteller to connect with an audience, often ending each tale by stating, “True story, I swear to God.” The problem is that these aren’t quite as true as he’d have the audience believe.
Biden and the Conductor
Once again, Biden told of his friendship with Amtrak conductor Angelo Negri, a story that has been fact-checked on multiple occasions.
In the most recent version, Biden claimed he was in his sixth or seventh year of his vice presidency, traveling to see his mother who was in hospice, and news reports noted he had traveled almost 1.2 million miles on Air Force planes. Negri seemed incensed as Biden – who earned the nickname “Amtrak Joe” – had already traveled some 1,285,000 miles.
That’s if you believe the story as it unfolded. As CNN and other fact-checkers have noted, the details don’t add up. Biden only reached the million-miles-flown in September 2015, but Negri passed away a year earlier in May 2014 – while Biden’s mother died five years earlier still.
Biden and His Grandfather – Not Born in the Same Hospital
On Tuesday, Biden also told how his “Grandpop Biden” died in the same hospital just six days before he was born there. It is a touching story – or would be, but like a lot of what the president says, it isn’t quite accurate.
Biden’s paternal grandfather died in a hospital in Baltimore, Maryland in September 1941, while he was born more than a year later in November 1942 – and at a hospital in Scranton, Pennsylvania.
His maternal grandfather, Ambrose Joseph Finnegan, did die at the Scranton hospital where the president was born. However, Finnegan passed in 1957, when the president was already 14 years old. It seems unlikely that this was a case of mixing up a few details – it was an outright lie where facts were changed to make a more compelling story.
Biden Witnessed a Bridge Collapse
As Biden touted the administration’s investment in U.S. infrastructure projects, he told of how he saw a Pittsburgh bridge collapse in 2022.
“A lot of you were with me when I was in Pittsburgh. And, by the way, the – Pittsburgh is the ‘City of Bridges.’ More bridges in Pittsburgh than any other city in America. I watched that bridge collapse. I got there and saw it collapse. With over 200 feet off the ground, going over a valley, and it collapsed,” Biden said.
The timing must have been amazing – at least if it were true. Some may have been with Bide in Pittsburgh last year, but he was not in town when the collapse happened. The bridge collapsed at 7 am on January 28, 2022, yet, Biden only arrived hours later. Though he had scheduled his visit to the city to talk about infrastructure, his itinerary was changed after the bridge collapsed
Connecting With the Audience
Clearly, President Joe Biden likes to tell stories that he believes help him make a connection to the audience. This is something that has been true of politicians throughout history – and it could be argued this is where Biden’s age is showing.
This is not about dementia or forgetfulness. Rather it is because there was a time when politicians could tell outright lies and not be called out.
As a young U.S. senator, Biden was able to make such claims as there were only three networks that devoted a mere 30 minutes to the evening news. Even local papers were unlikely to cover such speeches in great detail, and if Biden were fact-checked, most of the audience would almost certainly be none the wiser.
Today, thanks to cable news, talk radio, and social media, a politician can’t make a gaffe without the world taking notice.
But what still stands out is that Biden continues to repeat the same stories over and over, oftentimes changing key details as if they’re being made up on the spot. It is almost as if the president doesn’t believe such details can’t be confirmed or fact-checked – and even when they are, it seems it does little to actually change his mind that some stories should be retired.
Author Experience and Expertise
A Senior Editor for 19FortyFive, Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer. He has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers, and websites with over 3,200 published pieces over a twenty-year career in journalism. He regularly writes about military hardware, firearms history, cybersecurity, politics, and international affairs. Peter is also a Contributing Writer for Forbes and Clearance Jobs. You can follow him on Twitter: @PeterSuciu.
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