There have been so many false claims from Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on the Trump administration’s Wuhan coronavirus vaccine rollout plan that it’s hard to know where to start.

One of the biggest whoppers has been the persistent allegation from Biden, Harris, and other administration officials that they “had to start from scratch” on the rollout. Harris told Axios in a recent interview that “we’re starting from scratch on something that’s been raging for almost an entire year.”

Predictably, so-called “fact-checkers” have so far given her a pass on her false statement, even though Biden’s chief medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci had debunked a CNN report on this supposed “issue” last month.

During last night’s town hall on CNN, Biden added another bogus claim to the stack. He told moderator Anderson Cooper that “we didn’t have” the coronavirus vaccine when he came into office (bolded emphasis added):

BIDEN: In other words, not just all of a sudden 600 million doses are going to appear. And what’s going to happen is it’s going to continue to increase as we move along. And we’ll have — we’ll have reached 400 million by the end of May and 600 million by the middle of — by the end of July.

And the biggest thing, though, as you remember when you and I, I shouldn’t say it that way, as remember, but when you and I talked last, we talked about it’s one thing to have the vaccine, which we didn’t have when we came into office, but a vaccinator. How do you get the vaccine into someone’s arm?


A direct reading of Biden’s comments, even “in context,” suggests Biden meant what he said – that the administration didn’t have a vaccine when he took office.

But here’s how the fact-checkers from significant mainstream media news outlets rushed to explain Biden’s town hall answer last night:

CNN’s Daniel Dale, who tweeted last year during Biden’s last CNN town hall that Biden was “fact-checking” Trump by “uttering many consecutive coherent sentences,” had this to say:

Reuters reporter Jan Wolfe:

The Washington Post’s Glenn Kessler, whose paper announced last month that they had “no plans” to launch a Biden fact-checking database like they did with Trump, spun Biden’s answer like this:

When someone asked Kessler how he determined a “verbal stumble,” here was his answer:

As others observed, it looked more like a coordinated Biden “rapid response team” reaction than supposedly objective fact-checkers trying to boil down Biden’s false statement to a “verbal stumble”:

Amazingly, a full 12 hours after the town hall, Kessler is still at it (as I write this, he’s still trying to explain Biden’s answer):

And the finale from Kessler was the inevitable veiled swipe at Trump because they just can’t quit him:

Gosh, what could have changed over the last month to make fact-checkers so much more willing to give a president the benefit of the doubt when they say something that isn’t true?

As usual, it’s the “D” beside their names that makes all the (D)ifference.

— Stacey Matthews has also written under the pseudonym “Sister Toldjah” and can be reached via Twitter. —


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