Since his vice presidential nomination, Joe Biden's 2007 statement that a "guy who allegedly ... drank his lunch" and drove the truck that struck and killed his first wife and daughter has gained national media traction.
Alcohol didn't play a role in the 1972 crash, investigators found. But as recently as last week, the syndicated TV show Inside Edition aired a clip from 2001 of Biden describing the accident to an audience at the University of Delaware and saying the truck driver "stopped to drink instead of drive."
The senator's statements don't jibe with news and law enforcement reports from the time, which cleared driver Curtis C. Dunn, who died in 1999, of wrongdoing.
"To see it coming from [Biden's] mouth, I just burst into tears," Dunn's daughter, Glasgow resident Pamela Hamill, 44, said Wednesday. "My dad was always there for us. Now we feel like we should be there for him because he's not here to defend himself."
Biden spokesman David Wade said Wednesday that the senator "fully accepts the Dunn family's word that these rumors were false."
What is particularly outrageous about Biden resurrecting the false claim during his recent 2008 presidential bid is the fact that he wrote a letter of apology to the truck driver's daughter, Pamela Hamill, after she sent a letter to him about the same false claim he made when addressing a college audience shortly after September 11, 2001. The News Journal writes:
After reading a News Journal account of Biden's 2001 speech at UD, Hamill sent Biden a letter on behalf of her father. The newspaper story included Biden's description of getting the call that his wife and daughter had died, but not his comments about Dunn.
Hamill said her note to the senator described how Dunn was affected by the accident.
Printed on the senator's letter head and dated Oct. 11, 2001, the response from Biden reads:
"I apologize for taking so long to acknowledge your thoughtful and heartfelt note," Biden wrote. "All that I can say is I am sorry for all of us and please know that neither I nor my sons feel any animosity whatsoever."
Hamill immediately contacted Biden's office again after Inside Edition ran Biden's claim that his wife and daughter were killed by a drunk driver. The News Journal reports:
Hamill said it wasn't until the Inside Edition report that she became aware that the Delaware senator had said alcohol played a role in the accident. Dunn did not consume any alcohol the day of the crash, Hamill said.
She said she immediately called Biden's office after being contacted by Inside Edition and is waiting for the senator's response.
"The family feels these statements are both hurtful and untrue and we didn't know where they originated from," Hamill said.
As Hamill watched a recording of the Inside Edition report Wednesday, she gasped when the clip of Biden's comments from Iowa came on screen.
Joe Biden is absolutely shameless.