Biden's false memory problem
Joe Biden claimed twice recently that he met with Parkland, Florida, shooting survivors when he was vice president, despite the fact that he was already out of office when the attack took place. His campaign said Biden misspoke and was referring to a different meeting he had after the Sandy Hook shooting. But the flub was reminiscent of Biden’s past misstatements and his tendency to embellish biographical details.The story goes on to report four other false memories of Biden. He apparently has a need for self-aggrandizement.
In 1988, Biden was forced to drop out of the presidential race after he was found to have exaggerated his academic record, plagiarized a law school essay, and used quotes from other politicians in his speeches without attribution. But these are not the only questionable claims Biden has made. Here are six other times Biden was caught embellishing his biography:
1. Biden said his helicopter was “forced down” near Osama bin Laden’s lair in Afghanistan
Biden claimed in multiple speeches in 2008 that he knew where Osama bin Laden was hiding because his helicopter had been “forced down” nearby in the mountains of Afghanistan.
“If you want to know where al Qaeda lives, you want to know where bin Laden is, come back to Afghanistan with me,” said Biden. “Come back to the area where my helicopter was forced down with a three-star general and three senators at 10,500 feet in the middle of those mountains. I can tell you where they are.” In another speech, he claimed al Qaeda is "in the mountains between Afghanistan and Pakistan … where my helicopter was recently forced down.”
He later referred to “the superhighway of terror between Pakistan and Afghanistan where my helicopter was forced down.”
“John McCain wants to know where bin Laden and the gates of Hell are? I can tell him where,” said Biden.
The helicopter actually landed to wait out a snowstorm, according to the Associated Press.
Biden, John Kerry, and Chuck Hagel were on a Senate junket in Afghanistan when their helicopter crossed paths with the storm, according to reports. The pilot landed as a precaution, and a U.S. military convoy picked up the senators and took them to the main American airbase.
“Other than getting a little cold, it was fine,” Kerry told the AP when asked about the incident. “We were going to send Biden out to fight the Taliban with snowballs,” he joked.
[Also read: 'You should not be known as a gaffe machine': DNC members warn Biden]
2. Biden said he was a coal miner
While running for president in 2008, Biden told the United Mine Workers that he was a coal miner.