Biden slammed Obama as having ‘no grace’ in 2010 email to Hunter

Hunter accused Obama in 2010 of plagiarising his father’s 2008 campaign speeches about the effects of job loss

Gustaf Kilander
Washington, DC
Wednesday 13 September 2023 22:31 BST
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When President Joe Biden was second-in-command to President Barack Obama, he accused the then-commander-in-chief of having “no grace” in an email to his son Hunter regarding plagiarism allegations.

Hunter Biden had suggested that Mr Obama had used parts of his father’s speeches without giving credit, 2010 emails from the younger Mr Biden’s laptop show, according to Fox News.

On 6 September 2010, Mr Obama gave a speech supporting unions in Milwaukee at Laborfest. The following day, Hunter Biden quoted the then-president in an email to his father.

“Interesting language from the President: ‘They (his grandparent) would tell me about seeing their fathers or uncles losing their jobs ... how it wasn’t just a loss of a paycheck that stung. It was the blow to their dignity, their sense of self worth,’” Hunter Biden wrote to the then vice president.

“Wonder where he got that from?” he asked. “I’m surprised he didn’t finish with the long walk up a short flight of stairs. Pretty amazing.”

“No grace,” Joe Biden wrote back.

Hunter Biden was seemingly suggesting that Mr Obama had used language from Mr Biden’s 2008 campaign speeches when he would often speak about the subject of job loss and how it may affect a family, according to Fox.

As he accepted the nomination for vice president at the Democratic National Convention in August 2008, Mr Biden said: “That’s how you come to believe, to the very core of your being, that work is more than a paycheck. It’s dignity. It’s respect.”

In November of that year, Mr Biden spoke in Lee’s Summit, Missouri about the “long walk up a short flight of stairs” when a parent has to tell their child that they lost their job.

“You know, when a job is lost or a house is foreclosed on, it’s not just an economic loss, it’s emotionally devastating for a family,” he said. “It’s about a parent having to make that long walk up a short flight of stairs, like my dad did when I was 10 years old, and walk into the child’s bedroom and say, ‘honey, I’m sorry — I’m sorry but daddy lost his job or mommy lost her job’.”

When then-Senator Biden ran for president in 1988, he ended his campaign after it was revealed that he plagiarised part of a speech about being the first in his family to go to university from then-UK Labour leader Neil Kinnock.

The dean at the Syracuse University College of Law said that Mr Biden used “five pages of a published law review article without quotation or citation” during his first year at the school, Fox News noted.

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