NYT issues fact-check of Biden’s ‘tales,’ ‘hyperbole’; says Trump has ‘stream of lies’

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The New York Times published a fact-check of President Biden’s “tall tales” on Sunday, describing them as stories that either “stretch the truth or are downright false” while claiming former President Trump has a “stream of lies.”

“In President Biden’s telling, he was a teenage civil rights activist, a former trucker, the first in his family to go college and the nephew of a cannibalism victim,” reporter Linda Qiu’s fact-check read. “All of these claims stretch the truth or are downright false. But Mr. Biden persists in telling personal tales with rhetorical flourishes and factual liberty when he works a room or regales an audience.”

“Despite Mr. Biden’s penchant for exaggerating details when recounting episodes from his life, these autobiographical embellishments differ in scale and significance from the stream of lies about a stolen election peddled by his opponent, former President Donald J. Trump,” the fact-check continued.

She wrote that Biden often tries to connect with different audiences through “hyperbole,” noting a speech he gave at West Point during which he claimed he was nominated to attend the U.S. Naval Academy by former Sen. Caleb Boggs, his Republican opponent in his first Delaware Senate race. 

The Times noted it could not verify the claim.

Biden said in April that he used to drive an 18-wheeler, something he’s said at events with union members. 

President Biden, New York Times

The New York Times issued a scathing fact-check on President Biden’s “tall tales” on Sunday.  (Main: (Photo by Kena Betancur/VIEWpress) Circle: (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images))


The outlet also cited Biden’s remarks about his involvement in the civil rights movement.

“For decades, Mr. Biden has occasionally suggested that he played a greater role in the civil rights movement than he actually did. While there is corroboration of Mr. Biden’s participation in a few desegregation events, he has also said he would not consider himself an activist in the movement. There is no evidence that he was ever arrested,” the outlet reported.

Biden’s suggestion that his uncle was eaten by cannibals was also mentioned under the subheadline: “Stories too good to be true.”

The Times reported the story was “not supported by military records or anthropologists.”

President Biden

President Joe Biden speaks during a campaign event at the Martin Luther King Recreation Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, US, on Thursday, April 18, 2024. (Hannah Beier/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

The fact-check comes on the heels of reports of tension between the White House and the New York Times. 

The outlet called out Biden in April over his lack of media access, arguing it sets a bad precedent. 

The White House pointed Fox News Digital to the same statement they gave the Times. 


“President Biden has brought honesty and integrity back to the Oval Office. Like he promised, he gives the American people the truth right from the shoulder and takes pride in being straight with the country about his agenda and his values; including by sharing life experiences that have shaped his outlook and that hardworking people relate to,” White House senior deputy press secretary Andrew Bates said in a statement. 

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