Well-known for his exaggerations and outright fabrications, President Joe Biden made yet another grievous faux pas on Thursday when he reminisced to a group of Jewish leaders about visiting the Tree of Life synagogue in Philadelphia after a 2018 mass shooting there – a visit the White House was later forced to admit never occurred, as Fox News reports.
During a virtual address made during the run-up to Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashanah, Biden said, “I remember spending time at the, you know, going to the you know, the Tree of Life synagogue, speaking with them,” referring to aftermath of the deadly incident in which 11 were killed, as the New York Post noted.
It did not take long for the claim to start raising eyebrows, and ultimately, Tree of Life executive director Barb Feige stepped forward to declare that Biden had never paid an in-person visit to the house of worship.
Though no White House response to questions about Biden’s statement was forthcoming for a full 24 hours after the fact, an administration official eventually clarified that the president was in fact “referring to a call he had with the Tree of Life rabbi in 2019,” as Fox News added.
Biden’s debunked synagogue visit claim is far from the first time he has been caught in an full-blown fabrication of an event that supposedly happened in his past, once notably asserting that he had once been arrested during an attempt to visit Nelson Mandela while he was still imprisoned back in 1990, even going so far as to claim that the famed civil rights leader thanked him for his efforts.
In the end, Biden was forced to recant, saying, “I wasn’t arrested, I was stopped. I was not able to move where I wanted to go,” embarrassingly giving lie to the entire tale.
During his time as a senator, Biden notoriously claimed that he attended law school on a full academic scholarship and finished the program in the top 50% of his class, and he also boasted that he “graduated from three degrees from undergraduate school” while earning the title of “outstanding student in the political science department.”
As Politifact duly notes, not a single of those assertions was true, as Biden finished 76th in a class of 85 law students, had been offered a partial scholarship only, and never won academic honors in his undergraduate concentration.
Whether the yarn Biden told to the group of Jewish leaders last week was a symptom of his obviously failing cognitive faculties or his historic willingness to lie is something that remains unclear, but neither scenario is particularly suitable for the nation’s commander in chief.