During a trip to Florida to survey the damage caused by Hurricane Ian on Wednesday, the president attended a press briefing with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R).
Biden claimed he understands the anxiety Floridians, whose homes were destroyed or severely damaged by the hurricane, are facing because 18 years ago, lightning struck his house.
“I know from experience how much anxiety, and fear, concern there are in the people,” he began. “We didn’t lose our whole home, but lightning struck and we lost an awful lot of it.”
Watch the video below:
Biden: “We didn’t lose our whole home, but lightning struck and we lost an awful lot of it.”
According to a 2004 AP report, it was "a small fire…contained to the kitchen" that "was under control in 20 minutes." pic.twitter.com/O1gqPHTehr
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) October 5, 2022
Biden appeared to be referring to a 2004 incident in which his Delaware home was struck by lightning.
According to The Associated Press at the time, “Lightning struck the home of Sen. Joseph Biden, starting a small fire that was contained to the kitchen.”
“No one was injured in Sunday’s fire, which started amid a storm that caused serious flooding in Pennsylvania and knocked out power to hundreds of Delaware homes and businesses,” the article continued. “Firefighters arrived to find heavy smoke coming from the house, but were able to keep the flames from spreading beyond the kitchen, said Cranston Heights Fire Company Chief George Lamborn.”
The fire chief told the AP, “The fire was under control in 20 minutes.”
To make matters even more bizarre, Biden brought up this story before, but in each instance, the amount of damage to his home varied from almost burning it down, to destroying 25% of it, to destroying an “awful lot of it.”
In January of 2022, after surveying the damage caused by a wildfire in Colorado, the president said, “Jill and I have not gone through what you’ve gone through, but we have had lightning strike our home and almost lose our home.”
“We only lost about 25% of it. We were able to rebuild. But, you know, the hard part is the memorabilia you lost. The special things that you had put away that you lost,” he added.
And in November of 2021, he claimed the house burned down with his wife in it — even though she escaped.
He also told the story in 2013.
Biden recalls when his house was struck by lightning back in 2004. He's got a story for every tragedy.
— Jennifer Epstein (@jeneps) September 23, 2013
This is a weird life experience to equate to the anxiety caused by having your home or business destroyed or severely damaged. By his own admission, the Bidens’ home was not really destroyed. Nor did he have to worry about his employer being flattened or a work truck being swept out to sea.
The Capitol was still there. And a lightning strike was not going to cost him his job.
And by 2004, Biden had already been in the Senate for decades — which, granted, is not the highest paying job in the world. And unless he was exceptionally bad with his finances and relationships, it is hard to believe he felt the same anxiety of completely losing your home and having to figure out where to go for shelter.
Last year, Biden brought up the 2015 death of his son Beau Biden as he tried to connect to the grief of the families of the 13 servicemembers who died in a suicide bombing in Kabul, Afghanistan.
Presidents do not need to go through every possible life experience to be able to relate to the pain Americans are facing. And Biden should stop trying to make it seem as though he’s experienced every type of pain possible in every experience. It’s not empathetic. It’s just weird, especially when the details of the story change.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.