First lady Jill Biden offered an explanation Satruday for why President Biden forgot the year of his son Beau’s death in an interview with Special Counsel Robert Hur.
The first lady lashed out at Hur in a campaign email to donors, arguing that the Justice Department official only included the detail to score “political points.” She said that the grief of losing a son is not measured “in years.”
“We should give everyone grace, and I can’t imagine someone would try to use our son’s death to score political points,” she wrote in the email.
“If you’ve experienced a loss like that, you know that you don’t measure it in years — you measure it in grief,” she added. “Believe me, like anyone who has lost a child, Beau and his death never leave him.”
Biden’s son Beau died of a brain tumor in 2015, and his death was a major reason Biden cited for choosing not to run for president the following year.
“May 30th is a day forever etched on our hearts,” Jill said of Beau’s death. “It shattered me, it shattered our family. … What helped me, and what helped Joe, was to find purpose. That’s what keeps Joe going, serving you and the country we love.”
Hur cited Biden’s failure to remember the timing of his son’s death among several examples of the president’s “hazy” memory. The special counsel’s report on Biden’s mishandling of classified documents said Biden came across as a “sympathetic, well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory” after he forgot key details in an interview.
“In his interview with our office, Mr. Biden’s memory was worse,” the report states. “He did not remember when he was vice president, forgetting on the first day of the interview when his term ended (‘if it was 2013 — when did I stop being Vice President?’), and forgetting on the second day of the interview when his term began (‘in 2009, am I still Vice President?’).”
“He did not remember, even within several years, when his son Beau died,” the report continued. “And his memory appeared hazy when describing the Afghanistan debate that was once so important to him. Among other things, he mistakenly said he ‘had a real difference’ of opinion with General Karl Eikenberry, when, in fact, Eikenberry was an ally whom Mr. Biden cited approvingly in his Thanksgiving memo to President Obama.”
Biden was outraged with the report in a press conference last week, when reporters asked him whether he is still capable of running the White House.
“I am well-meaning. And I’m an elderly man. And I know what the hell I’m doing. I’ve been president – I put this country back on its feet. I don’t need his recommendation,” Biden said of Hur.
Moments later, he misidentified Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi as “the president of Mexico.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report