Former Vice President Joe Biden said during an appearance on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert that people should stop bothering him about getting nearly every detail wrong in a story he told about honoring a soldier in Afghanistan.
The Democratic presidential candidate told Stephen Colbert that he was being unfairly criticized as he got the essence of the story right, the Washington Examiner reports.
Shortly after sharing the story about how a military service member refused an accolade after a fellow soldier was killed, instead requesting empathy from Biden, the Washington Post debunked nearly every detail.
The Washington Post reports Biden told “a moving but false war story.” Here’s more:
“This is the God’s truth,” Biden had said as he told the story. “My word as a Biden.”
Except almost every detail in the story appears to be incorrect. Based on interviews with more than a dozen U.S. troops, their commanders and Biden campaign officials, it appears as though the former vice president has jumbled elements of at least three actual events into one story of bravery, compassion and regret that never happened.
Biden visited Konar province in 2008 as a U.S. senator, not as vice president. The service member who performed the celebrated rescue that Biden described was a 20-year-old Army specialist, not a much older Navy captain. And that soldier, Kyle J. White, never had a Silver Star, or any other medal, pinned on him by Biden. At a White House ceremony six years after Biden’s visit, White stood at attention as President Barack Obama placed a Medal of Honor, the nation’s highest award for valor, around his neck.
“Those details are irrelevant,” Biden defiantly told Colbert on Wednesday night. “The point I was making was relevant.”
“I was not talking about me,” Biden continued, as the Washington Examiner reports. “I was praising … the valor of all these people out there that I’ve visited in over 20 visits in Afghanistan and Iraq.”
“It’s a different thing to say, when you’re talking about honoring the bravery, or the sacrifice, or what other people went through, and the essence of it is absolutely true,” the Democratic presidential candidate said. “The fact that I said that I was vice president … well in one case I was vice president-elect, the other case I was a senator. I’m not sure that’s relevant. ”
“I don’t get wrong, things like … we should lock kids up in cages at the border,” he added, intending to swipe the Trump administration although this policy started while Joe Biden was serving under President Obama. “I think there’s a difference whether you’re talking about somebody else.”
“Those details are irrelevant when the point I was making was absolutely accurate,” he echoed.