In a speech last week, the president let loose some whoppers – and the White House has been busy walking a lot of them back. He was in Virginia on Thursday speaking to construction workers, hailing his accomplishments after two years in the Oval Office and reminding them how terrible "the other guy" was.
Biden: "Back then, only 3.5 million people had even had their first vaccination because the other guy, the other team didn't think it mattered a whole lot."
Fact: Actually, it was 19 million Americans.
Biden: "Last year we funded 700,000 major construction projects – 700,000 all across America. From highways to airports to bridges to tunnels to broadband."
Fact: Try 7,000 – only off by a factor of 100.
Curtis Houck of Media Research Center says these weren't mere misspeaks – they were flat-out lies. "He's somebody who always plays fast and loose with the facts because he's always a sweet talker, or [he] tries to elbow his way past people," he adds.
Those and other lies in the speech were too much even for CNN, which called out the president with a fact-checking article addressing other untruths and/or exaggerations – among them the cap on seniors' drug spending, billionaires and taxes, the new corporate tax, and the federal deficit.
The White House was furiously walking back some of Biden's claims over the weekend – spawning this comment from Houck:
"That was kind of one indication [the mainstream media is taking off the gloves]," he tells AFN. "But I think the next step, then, is when you start writing stories that are adversarial and targeting the president."
According to the CNN article – which fact-checked 14 claims – "some of Biden's claims were false, misleading or lacking critical context, though others were correct." One year ago, CNN also fact-checked the president on claims about his first year in office.