Posted by Curt on 22 March, 2020 at 10:00 am. 3 comments already!


Joe Biden claimed at the last Democratic primary debate that, under his administration, there would be, quote, “No ability for the oil industry to continue to drill, period, ends.”

Republican operatives and right-leaning news sites, including the Daily Caller and the Washington Free Beacon, quickly highlighted the moment, noting accurately that Biden’s comments that evening marked a major and much more aggressive shift in his energy platform.

Shame on them, says the Washington Post’s fact-checker. It is dirty pool to highlight, accurately, a quote that will almost certainly come back to haunt the former vice president when he campaigns for the presidency in the Rust Belt and other drilling states.

The Post’s fact-check this week of Biden’s debate remarks opens with these paragraphs:

In this back-and-forth with Sanders, Biden indicated from the debate stage that he would ban all fracking in the United States.

Critics pounced. Republican operatives cut a short video of Biden’s remarks, to use as a cudgel in races against moderate House Democrats. Sanders supporters accused Biden of misleading voters about his policy, which doesn’t ban fracking outright, as Sanders would.

“Pounced”? All they did was quote Biden!

At the debate, Biden said, “No. 1: no more subsidies for the fossil fuel industry, no more drilling on federal lands, no more drilling, including offshore, no ability for the oil industry to continue to drill, period, ends, No. 1.”

He added elsewhere, “No more. No new fracking. And, by the way, on the Recovery Act, I was able to make sure we invested $90 billion in making sure we brought down the price of solar and wind. That is lower than the price of coal. That’s why not another new coal plant will be built.”

That seems newsworthy, especially considering that all fracking is “new fracking” because the actual process of hydraulic fracturing takes a very short time. The Post should also find it notable that Biden announced, live, during a Democratic debate, his supposed plan to impose much, much tougher drilling restrictions than previously discussed.

After the debate, Biden’s campaign immediately walked back his comments (for obvious reasons), claiming he merely misspoke and that what he said that evening was simply a mischaracterization of his true position.

OK, so now, it sounds like he lied to pander to anti-oil Democratic voters. Biden shared a stage with Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, who is much, much tougher on energy. Biden declaring himself the true anti-drilling crusader and then walking it back once the cameras stopped rolling leaves one with the distinct impression that he knowingly presented a falsehood to Democratic primary voters.

Laughably, Biden’s campaign claiming he merely misspoke is good enough for the Post’s fact-checker, which saw fit to award Biden zero “Pinocchios” while also focusing its fire on those who simply repeated back the former vice president’s own words.

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