Beau Biden was in Iraq for a year, and was back in 2009. He never saw action. He was not diagnosed with brain cancer until 2013!
President Biden told US forces stationed in Japan that his son Beau perished in the Iraq War, a video obtained exclusively by The Post reveals — after the president stoked questions about his own mental acuity by making the same incorrect claimat least twice last year.
“My son was a major in the US Army. We lost him in Iraq,” the 80-year-old president said during an informal visit with troops at Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni Thursday.
The traveling press corps, which has faced repeated access issues while covering the nation’s oldest-ever president, was kept far enough away that the remarks were inaudible.
The White House press office did not put out an official transcript, almost allowing the error to escape public notice.
In fact, the president’s son died of brain cancer in 2015 at the Walter Reed military hospital in Bethesda, Md.
Such glaring factual errors are a political liability for Biden, who is seeking a second term in 2024.
A Washington Post-ABC poll released earlier this month found that just 32% of the public believes Biden has the mental sharpness required to serve as president.
Beau Biden died at 46 after being groomed to carry on his dad’s political legacy.
He was Delaware’s attorney general from 2007 to 2015 and the president often says he thought his son could have been elected to the highest office in the land.
In other public remarks, Biden has attributed his son’s fatal cancer to “burn pits” that disposed of military waste during Beau’s nearly yearlong deployment to Iraq in 2008 and 2009.
Biden stopped at Iwakuni en route to a summit of G-7 leaders in the Japanese city of Hiroshima.
The president proceeded to make other gaffes at the conference, including referring to South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol, whom he hosted for an April 26 state dinner, as “Loon” and repeatedly using the wrong title for Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, whom he called “president.”
Biden is seeking a second four-year term and would be 86 years old if he completes eight years in office. The frontrunner for the Republican nomination is 76-year-old former President Donald Trump, though he faces primary challenges from a number of younger GOP contenders.
The White House press office, which did not immediately respond to a request for comment Monday, has implemented severe restrictions on journalistic access during Biden’s time in office.
In February, for example, Biden’s aides left behind almost all of the traveling press pool during a surprise visit to Kyiv, Ukraine, despite notifying the invading Russian military of the plans.
White House aides have also adopted an unprecedented system for pre-screening reporters allowed to attend indoor events with the president, while refusing to clarify the criteria for selection — even to leaders of the White House Correspondents’ Association.
Journalists from most briefing-room seats signed a protest letter last year calling the practice “antithetical to the concept of a free press,” yet it has remained in what journalists suspect is an attempt to shape the variety of questions presented to the president.
The New York Times noted last month that “[s]ince taking office, he has not done a single interview with reporters from a major newspaper.”
Biden’s aides typically counter that he has done more short Q&As than Trump — though Biden’s often are far briefer.
It’s not the first time that potentially embarrassing exchanges by Biden failed to be captured either in pool reports or official transcripts.
Last year, Biden told athletes in Israel that he once tried to get a walk-on tryout for the NFL, though the precise words weren’t recorded, muting blowback.
In November 2021, he scoffed at a question from The Post in the Rose Garden about whether he was concerned about potential corruption in his son Hunter’s art sales.
“You gotta be kidding me,” Biden said, though his reply was unclear for days until a journalist clip emerged.
Concern about Biden’s mental fitness for office surged in September when he asked “Where’s Jackie?” and searched for the late Rep. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) at an event — despite publicly mourning her car-accident death and even calling her family to offer his condolences in August.
Biden’s defenders argue that he’s simply prone to misspeaking and view it as part of his political charm.
His factually incorrect claims often coincide with Biden attempting to establish a personal connection to his audience.
In December, Biden claimed that his uncle Frank Biden won the Purple Heart for his actions during the Battle of the Bulge in World War II — but there’s no evidence of the award and key details make the story factually impossible.
In October, Biden said firefighters nearly died extinguishing a blaze in his kitchen in 2004, prompting the local fire department to describe the event as relatively “insignificant” for trained professionals.
In January 2022, Biden told students at historically black colleges in Atlanta that he was arrested during civil rights protests — for which there is also no evidence.
Biden, then a senator, dropped out of the 1988 Democratic presidential primary after revelations that he exaggerated his academic record and plagiarized a campaign speech and a law school paper.
During that campaign, Biden borrowed British politician Neil Kinnock’s family history — with Biden changing details to incorrectly claim in speeches that “my ancestors … worked in the coal mines of Northeast Pennsylvania and would come up after 12 hours and play football for four hours.” Unlike Kinnock, Biden’s ancestors did not mine coal.
Biden also claimed in 1987 that he “graduated with three degrees from college,” was named “the outstanding student in the political science department,” “went to law school on a full academic scholarship — the only one in my class to have a full academic scholarship” and ”ended up in the top half” of his class.
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