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Happy Anniversary: Joe Biden's Plagiarism Scandal Ends His Presidential Run On This Date In 1987

AP Photo/Eduardo Munoz Alvarez

Happy Anniversary, Joe Biden! On September 23,1988, Biden ended his first presidential campaign after getting caught plagiarizing campaign speeches from a Scottish politician. 


"#OnThisDay in 1987, Joe Biden was forced to end his first run for president after he was caught plagiarizing. Earlier this year, Biden's climate plan was revealed to have plagiarized several lines word for word," the Trump campaign tweeted. 

Here's a brief rundown of Biden's plagiarism scandal via Business Insider:

During his failed 1988 run, Biden lifted portions of a speech by United Kingdom Labour MP and Margaret Thatcher challenger Neil Kinnock.

New York Times reporter Maureen Dowd reported on the fiasco in September 1987:

During an event at the Iowa State Fair, Biden mimicked entire portions of Kinnock's speech from earlier in the year. At one moment, Biden repeated the line that he was the first "in a thousand generations" to graduate from college, gesturing to his wife in the exact same way Kinnock did, while also saying the same line about her education and lineage.

Biden would later acknowledge that he in fact did have relatives who attended college, directly contrasting the Kinnock lines.

As Dowd reported, Biden's staffers were defensive about the allegations of blatant plagiarism. Nevertheless, Biden dropped out of the race by the end of the month.

As the Trump campaign mentioned, Biden landed himself in hot water yet again this past June after he plagiarized his climate change plan. He blamed his staff for that one.

As Victoria covered, here was his excuse this time around:

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden blamed his staff Wednesday for plagiarism in his new climate change proposal. 

When asked about the plagiarism, Biden told reporters that his campaign staffers “made a mistake.”

“I think you’re going to see from the campaign an acknowledgment of exactly what happened and what it did. You know, it’s uh, I think it’s uh … Look, they made a mistake, they corrected it, they acknowledged it, and they let me know about it. And the outfits that some of the language came from are people who support the plan,” he said. 

What a schmuck. Happy anniversary, Joe. 

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