More campaign trail claims from Democratic nominee Joe Biden have been called into question — this time his tales of being “raised” in a black church in Delaware where he was supposedly a civil rights organizer.
The former veep, 77, has repeatedly spoken about participating in the civil rights movement as a teenager in the 1960s and of attending organizing sessions at the Union Baptist Church in Wilmington — then run by Reverend Otis Herring, an acclaimed pastor who died in 1996.
But congregants and a longtime assistant to Herring at the prominent black church told the Washington Free Beacon this week that they never remembered Biden attending like he claimed, and said he met Herring as an adult.
When asked if Biden attended Union Baptist, Phyllis Drummond, Herring’s longtime assistant who attended the church for four decades, said: “No. Not at our building.”
Juanita Matthew, another longtime member, told the Free Beacon that she also wasn’t aware of Biden’s attendance as a high-school student.
She said Herring only befriended Biden after the newly-elected senator’s wife and daughter were killed in a tragic car accident in 1972, but called the lawmaker a “a great friend of the church and the pastor.”
In various stump speeches during the Democratic primary, Biden repeatedly claimed that he was at Union Baptist every weekend and was involved in organizing anti-segregation protests.
“When I was a teenager in Delaware, for real, I got involved in the civil rights movement,” Biden told a crowd of parishioners at the Bethlehem Baptist Church in South Carolina on Jan. 20.
“I’d go to 8 o’clock mass, then I’d go to Reverend Herring’s church where we’d meet in order to organize and figure where we were going to go, whether we were going to desegregate the Rialto movie theater or what we were going to do,” he went on.
“I got my education, for real, in the black church, and that’s not hyperbole, it’s a fact,” he said.
At an NAACP event in Iowa several days prior, Biden said his “political identity” was shaped by his
“I was raised in the black church politically — not a joke,” he told the audience, according to the New York Times.
‘That’s what I’m part of. That’s where my political identity comes from. And it’s the single most loyal constituency I’ve ever had,” he said.
In January, civil rights activist Shaun King accused Biden of being a “serial liar” and said he had spoken to “former members” and people close to Herring’s family who said the claims were untrue.
“Four different people in Wilmington expressed to me that these claims of Biden are so outrageous and dishonest that it caused them to truly worry for his mental health,” King wrote in his brutal take-down.
Biden’s White House run has been beset by gaffes and fabrications, including his claim that he was arrested in South Africa in the 1970s during a trip to visit anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela.
He walked back these comments when it was revealed they weren’t true.
He also claimed that he called Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic a “damn war criminal” to his face during a 1993 meeting, but people in attendance said they couldn’t recall such an exchange.
Critics of the former vice president also accused him of taking the support of African American Democratic voters for granted after he infamously said anyone voting for Trump “ain’t black.”
Biden’s 1988 presidential run was also brought undone by a plagiarism scandal and claims that he participated in civil rights marches — something he later admitted was false.
“During the 60’s, I was, in fact, very concerned about the civil rights movement,” he said during a 1987 press conference where he admitted, “I was not an activist.”
The then-Delaware senator said his exposure to the civil rights fight actually came from working at an “all-black swimming pool” in Wilmington.
“I was involved in what they were thinking, what they were feeling. But I was not out marching,” he said, according to an archived New York Times report.
“I was not down in not out marching. I was not down in Selma. I was not anywhere else. I was a suburbanite kid who got a dose of exposure to what was happening to black Americans,” he said.
The Biden campaign could not be immediately reached for comment.
Source: NY Post
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