Amtrak Joe hits the buffers: President’s story about conductor congratulating him for traveling 1.5m miles had RETIRED 20 years earlier – and his mother who he ‘was visiting’ was already dead
- Biden shared the anecdote in a speech on Friday celebrating 50 years of Amtrak
- Said conductor congratulated him on 1.5 million miles in his second VP term
- Recalled the incident occurred while he was traveling to visit his sick mother
- Biden began his second term in 2013, but conductor he named retired in 1993
- And Biden’s mother sadly passed away in 2010, at the age of 92
- It is not the first time questions have been raised about Biden’s anecdotes
President Joe Biden‘s strange anecdote about reaching 1.5 million miles on Amtrak has come under scrutiny after key inconsistencies emerged that make it impossible to have occurred as he told it.
On Friday, delivering a speech in Philadelphia commemorating the 50th anniversary of Amtrak, Biden launched into the tale of a certain conductor congratulating him on reaching the milestone as he traveled to visit his sick mother.
Biden said the incident occurred in his ‘fourth or fifth year as vice president’, or around 2014-2015, at which time the conductor he named had been retired for 20 years and his mother had passed away, inconsistencies first pointed out by Fox News.
On Thursday, White House Deputy Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre was asked about the story on Air Force One as Biden flew to Louisiana.
She said: ‘The President’s long history with with Amtrak and appreciation for the hard working employees is very well known. He was proud to come over and commemorate Amtrak’s 50th anniversary just last Friday … to highlight the need for job creating investments in America’s infrastructure.’
On Friday, delivering a speech in Philadelphia commemorating the 50th anniversary of Amtrak, Biden launched into the tale of reaching 1.5 million miles on the service
Biden’s strange anecdote about reaching 1.5 million miles on Amtrak has come under scrutiny after key inconsistencies emerged
Biden, who served in the Senate for 36 years, famously commuted by Amtrak to Congress from his home in Wilmington, Delaware, racking up many miles on the train service.
‘When I became vice president, one of the Capitol Hill newspapers estimated that I had taken more than 7,000 round trips on Amtrak over my career,’ he explained in his speech on Friday.
‘I think that’s an exaggeration. I’m going to rely on those two conductors … one of them was a guy named Angelo Negri,’ he continued, launching into the anecdote.
‘There was an article, I guess my fourth or fifth year as vice president, saying Biden travels 1,300,000 miles on Air Force One [Two]. I used to – the Secret Service didn’t like it – but I used to like to take the train home,’ he continued.
‘My mom was sick and I used to try to come home almost every weekend as vice president to see her. I got on the train and Angelo Negri came up and he goes, ‘Joey, baby,’ and he grabbed my cheek like he always did. I thought he was going to get shot. I’m serious. I said, ‘No, no, he’s a friend,’ Biden recalled.
‘He said, ‘Joey, what’s the big deal? 1,300,000 miles on Air Force Two? Do you know how many miles you traveled on Amtrak?’ I said, ‘No, Angie, I don’t know.’ He gave me the calculation and he said you traveled 1,500,000 miles on Amtrak. The fact is, I’d probably take Angie’s word before I’d take the word of what the article said,’ Biden said.
Biden on the metro liner to Washington DC in 1988. He was returning to work in the Senate after having suffered a life-threatening aneurysm
Biden is seen touring an Amtrak train in 2014. He recalled an incident that occurred around 2014 or 2015, but the conductor he named retired in 1993
Biden said he was visiting his sick mother, Catherine ‘Jean’ Biden, but she passed away in 2010. They are seen together on election night in 2008
A key issue with the tale is that Angelo Negri retired as an Amtrak conductor in 1993, according to his 2014 obituary. That is long before Biden was elected vice president in 2008.
As well, Biden’s mother, Catherine ‘Jean’ Biden, passed away in 2010 at the age of 92, meaning that she was not alive in Biden’s ‘fourth or fifth year as vice president’.
Further casting doubt on the account, Biden’s own office celebrated his one millionth mile on Air Force Two in 2015.
In 2017, CNN interviewed Biden and wife Jill on Amtrak after he left the White House as Obama’s Vice President.
He said that Amtrak had ‘calculated’ that he’d made 8,200 round trips totalling more than two million miles.
Biden said he made the 259-mile round trip an average of 217 days a year.
‘This is my family and this is I wanted to go home, the way I came,’ he said.
Since entering the White House he has not been able to take Amtrak for security reasons in the wake of the Capitol Riot, despite his requests.
It is not the first time that Biden’s colorful anecdotes have drawn questions about their accuracy.
On the campaign trail last year, Biden told a tale about being arrested in South Africa while trying to visit Nelson Mandela in prison.
No contemporaneous or other supporting evidence ever emerged to support Biden’s extraordinary claim, and key figures he said were with him denied any knowledge of the events.
Biden waves from the back of the train with wife Jill, son Hunter (left) and Beau (far right) and his granddaughter Natalie (second from right) after he announced his run for president in 1987
It led some to compare the story to the so-called ‘Mandela Effect’, a phenomenon in which a person’s vivid memory of a historical event or cultural touchstone turns out to be false.
However, surprising details of some of Biden’s most colorful anecdotes have sometimes been proven out by evidence.
His infamous tale of a teenage confrontation with Delaware gangster ‘Corn Pop’ was proven out in some of its details, after an obituary emerged for a Wilmington man with the unusual nickname.
Members of the black community in Wilmington also came forward and said that the Corn Pop confrontation had long been well known in local lore.
Published at Thu, 06 May 2021 16:33:22 +0000-Biden’s bizarre story about hitting 1.5million miles on Amtrak unravels