First lady Jill Biden explained Saturday why President Biden forgot the year his son Beau died in an interview with Special Advisor Robert Hur.
The first lady attacked Hur in a campaign email to donors, arguing that the Justice Department official only included the details to score “political points.” She said the grief of losing a son is not measured “in years.”
“We should extend clemency to everyone, and I can’t imagine anyone trying to use our son’s death to score political points,” she wrote in the email.
“If you've experienced a loss like this, you know it's not measured in years, but in grief,” she added. “Believe me, like anyone who has lost a child, Beau and his death never leave him.”
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Biden's son Beau died of a brain tumor in 2015, and his death was one of the main reasons Biden cited for choosing not to run for president the following year.
“May 30 is a day forever etched in our hearts,” Jill said of Beau’s death. “It broke me, it broke our family. … What helped me, and what helped Joe, was finding purpose. That's what keeps Joe going, serving you as well as the country we love.”
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Hur cited Biden's inability to remember the moment of his son's death among several examples of the president's “fuzzy” memory. The special counsel's report on Biden's mishandling of classified documents says Biden came across as an “older, friendly, well-meaning man with a poor memory” after forgetting key details during an interview.
“During his interview with our office, Mr. Biden’s memory was worse,” the report said. “He didn't remember when he was vice-presidentforgetting on the first day of the interview the end of his mandate (“if it was in 2013, when did I stop being vice-president?”), and forgetting on the second day of the interview the beginning of his term (“in 2009, I am I am still vice president?’).”
“He did not remember, even after several years, the death of his son Beau,” the report continues. “And his memory appeared fuzzy when he described the Afghanistan debate that was once so important to him. Among other things, he falsely stated that he 'had a real difference' of opinion with the general Karl Eikenberry, when in fact Eikenberry was an ally that Mr. Biden cited approvingly in his Thanksgiving note to President Obama.
Biden was outraged by the report at a news conference last week, when reporters asked him if he was still capable of running the White House.
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“I'm well-meaning. And I'm an old man. And I know what I'm doing. I've been president — I've put this country back on its feet. I don't need his recommendation,” Biden said about Hur.
Moments later, he misidentified Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi as “the president of Mexico.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report