FLASHBACK: On This Day in 1987, Plagiarism Scandal Forced Joe Biden Out of Democratic Presidential Race

Career politician Joe Biden, who was a long-time U.S. Senator before becoming Barack Obama’s Vice President, bowed out of the Democratic Presidential race on this day in 1987.

A reporter noted that Biden was forced out of the race due to “questions of character and integrity” after being dogged by an embarrassing plagiarism scandal and dishonesty about his record as a Washington D.C. lawmaker:

Biden gained infamy after he was caught stealing substantial portions of a speech from Neil Kinnock, a United Kingdom Labour MP who challenged Tory icon Margaret Thatcher for Prime Minister of Britain. He had also plagiarized a law review journal while writing a paper as a student at Syracuse law school.

At first, Biden denied any wrongdoing for his actions, hoping that he could shrug off the developing scandal.

“Look, I’m a big boy,” Biden said. ”I’ve been in politics for 15 years. This is not my style. If they want to do it this way, so be it.”

But eventually, he was forced to admit that he did in fact commit plagiarism. It would eventually lead to Biden bowing out of the race.

“I was wrong, but I was not malevolent in any way,” he said. ”I did not intentionally move to mislead anybody. And I didn’t. To this day I didn’t.”

”When I was at Syracuse,” Biden added, ”I was married, I was in law school, I wore sports coats. You’re looking at a middle-class guy. I am who I am. I’m not big on flak jackets and tie-dyed shirts. You know, that’s not me.”

Luckily for Biden, plagiarism is no longer something that can disqualify a candidate from presidential contention in a Democratic Party that has abandoned accountability and virtue. Biden has already been caught plagiarizing part of his climate change proposal earlier in this campaign cycle.

“I think you’re going to see from the campaign an acknowledgment of exactly what happened and what it did. You know, it’s uh, I think it’s uh … Look, they made a mistake, they corrected it, they acknowledged it, and they let me know about it. And the outfits that some of the language came from are people who support the plan,” Biden said earlier this year.

Biden remains the frontrunner in the polls for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, despite his decades of baggage as well as a series of embarrassing flubs that have even many of his fellow Democrats questioning his mental acuity for the position.

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