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5 Jun, 2019 00:53

Biden campaign caught plagiarizing parts of his 2020 climate plan, says it forgot citations

Biden campaign caught plagiarizing parts of his 2020 climate plan, says it forgot citations

Democratic US presidential candidate Joe Biden, whose first campaign was sunk by plagiarism, has been caught plagiarizing bits of his 2020 climate plan. The campaign claims it merely "left out" the citations.

At least three passages from the climate plan Biden's campaign released on Tuesday were copied directly from environmental organizations, CREDO activist Josh Nelson tweeted, posting original text from the Carbon Capture Coalition and the Blue Green Alliance alongside text from Biden's campaign website.

Compounding the gaffe, the Carbon Capture Coalition's membership includes the country's largest fossil fuel companies – not such strange bedfellows for Biden, who received a D- grade from Greenpeace last week largely due to his lack of environmental policy, but less than ideal for a candidate trying to reinvent himself as "green."

Biden's campaign waited the better part of a day to address the charges as the news spread, buoyed by anger at the candidate over news he'd lied about marching in the civil rights movement, finally telling Business Insider that while they had "inadvertently left out" "several citations" from the final version of the document posted to the website, it had been updated to include references.

Biden's habit of plagiarism dates back to his first presidential campaign in 1988, when he lifted a popular speech from a UK politician that mischaracterized his own family background, implying he was descended from coal miners and the first in his family to attend university. Caught in a pile of lies, the campaign responded with a strikingly similar excuse: "To the degree it wasn't attributed, it was an oversight or inadvertent," Biden's 1988 campaign aide told the New York Times. 

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It wasn't the only misappropriated speech Biden made before dropping out of the race – he also borrowed one from Robert F. Kennedy the previous year, and even plagiarized while at law school, complaining when he was caught that his "intent was not to deceive anyone." The candidate complained the fuss over his plagiarism was "much ado about nothing," and blamed rival campaigns for blowing the issue out of proportion. 

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