The White House’s recent statement explaining why President Biden did not attend a 9/11 memorial at one of the attack locations seems flawed.
On Monday, Peter Doocy from Fox News relayed the White House’s response to his inquiry about President Biden being in Hanoi, Vietnam, during the 20th anniversary of the September 11 attacks. They likened it to U.S. presidents not visiting Pearl Harbor 22 years after the attack, suggesting that the tradition of visiting attack sites can change over time.
However, historical records challenge this comparison. The John F. Kennedy Presidential Library shared on its platform in December 2020 that in 1963, 22 years after the Pearl Harbor attack, President Kennedy visited the USS Arizona Memorial. The library stated, “On the anniversary of the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor, President Kennedy laid a wreath at the USS Arizona Memorial to honor those lost in the surprise attack.”
Fox News Digital is yet to receive a response from the White House regarding this matter.
It’s worth noting that since 2001, most U.S. presidents have attended September 11 memorials at either New York, the Pentagon, or Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Yet, Presidents George W. Bush and Obama chose to commemorate the anniversary of the White House on one occasion instead of visiting the sites mentioned above.
On the 22nd anniversary of the tragic 9/11 attacks on New York City and the Pentagon, President Biden paid tribute during a layover in Alaska as he returned from Asia.
In his remarks, Biden mentioned that he stood at Ground Zero in New York, observing the aftermath just a day after September 11, 2001. “When I was at Ground Zero the day after the attack, it felt as if I was gazing into the gates of Hell, given the sheer devastation visible from my vantage point,” Biden shared during his speech at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Anchorage, Alaska.
However, records seem to contradict this claim. C-SPAN’s September 12, 2001 footage indicates that Biden was in Washington, D.C., where he delivered a speech in the Senate. Records confirm the Senate convened that morning and hosted a confidential briefing for its members at 2:00 p.m. ET.
Furthermore, records show that Biden played an active role in the Senate’s activities that day, including voting on a joint resolution condemning the terrorist attacks. He was the Democratic manager for this resolution.
The New York Post also highlighted discrepancies between Biden’s recent comments and his autobiography. In his memoir, Biden recalls returning to the Capitol on September 12 without mentioning a visit to Ground Zero on that specific day.
Adding to this, a Gannett News Wire article from September 12, 2001, emphasized, “Delaware Sen. Joe Biden spent Wednesday [September 12] precisely where he intended to be – in the U.S. Senate.”