WASHINGTON — President Biden did not go to the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh after the homicide of 11 congregants — regardless of saying so, the White House admitted Friday.
Biden on Thursday advised Jewish leaders that he remembered “spending time at” and “going to” the Tree of Life, however the synagogue advised The Post he by no means visited.
Nearly 24 hours after being requested concerning the discrepancy, a White House official stated in a press release that Biden “was referring to a name he had with the Tree of Life rabbi in 2019.”
Biden’s preliminary false assertion acquired widespread criticism and was featured in segments on CNN and Fox News.
TREE OF LIFE SYNAGOGUE DISPUTES BIDEN’S CLAIM HE VISITED AFTER MASSACRE
The 2018 mass capturing on the Tree of Life was the worst anti-Jewish hate crime in US historical past.
Biden has a popularity for making false or embellished claims and dropped out of his first presidential marketing campaign in 1988 on account of a plagiarism scandal. But at practically 79 years outdated, his psychological acuity is also a frequent matter of public debate.
In one notorious misstatement, Biden in 2020 claimed he “had the nice honor of being arrested” in South Africa when he was “making an attempt to get to see [Nelson Mandela] on Robbens Island,” the place Mandela was in jail till 1990. He stated Mandela thanked him for it.
Biden later admitted, “I wasn’t arrested, I used to be stopped. I used to be not in a position to transfer the place I needed to go.”
Biden dropped out of the 1988 Democratic presidential main on account of a plagiarism scandal. He admitted plagiarizing a legislation college paper and was uncovered for utilizing with out credit score strains from British Labor Party chief Neil Kinnock.
However, Biden struggled together with his reminiscence on the Thursday occasion.
The president might not recall the identify of the tune “Hava Nagila” whereas talking about his daughter’s marriage ceremony to a Jewish man, saying, “My thoughts goes clean now, what’s the tune that’s performed the place all people is on the chair? I can’t keep in mind it.”
Although Biden incorrectly stated he visited the Tree of Life, the congregation’s rabbi, Hazzan Jeffrey Myers, indicated there have been no exhausting emotions in a press release launched by the White House.
“President Biden kindly referred to as me on my cell phone as I used to be sitting in Dulles Airport awaiting a return flight to Pittsburgh after I testified earlier than Congress in July 2019,” Myers stated.
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“In a heartfelt means, he prolonged his condolences and requested how we have been doing. We spoke concerning the challenges of antisemitism, and he made clear he would confront it with us as president. The dialog meant a fantastic deal to me, and I’ll at all times be pleased about his type phrases and continued assist of our neighborhood.”
Then-President Donald Trump visited the Tree of Life three days after mass capturing. Trump was joined by distinguished Jewish members of his administration, together with his daughter Ivanka Trump, his son-in-law Jared Kushner and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin.