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Jake Tapper attempted to moral-scold Republicans for not condemning the heckling from Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., during President Biden‘s State of the Union address as critics called out the CNN anchor’s own apparent hypocrisy.
Boebert interrupted Biden’s speech on Tuesday to invoke the 13 U.S. servicemen who were killed at the Kabul airport terrorist attack in the chaotic withdrawal from Afghanistan, which received no mention in the president’s speech.
The outburst from the GOP lawmaker came as Biden was addressing the health concerns of veterans who had been exposed to toxic burn pits overseas. He then immediately speculated that the cancer diagnosis of his late son, Beau Biden, was related to his own exposure to the burn pits during his years of service.
On Wednesday, Tapper decried Boebert’s behavior with an erroneous tweet, claiming Biden was discussing soldiers killed in action.
“In a different era, a congresswoman shouting and heckling the president at the SOTU while he was talking about US soldiers Killed In Action — and was about to invoke his own dead son — would be widely condemned across the political spectrum. Starting with her caucus leader,” Tapper wrote, appearing to take a swipe at House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif.
Critics called out “The Lead” anchor for his false claim about Biden’s remarks while others invoked House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s infamous tearing up a copy of President Trump’s speech at the 2020 State of the Union address.
However, as pointed out by Tablet Magazine’s Noam Blum, Tapper was rather sympathetic to Pelosi during CNN’s coverage at the time, arguing that Trump had gotten under Pelosi’s “skin.”
“Donald Trump is having a week that is frustrating lots of Democrats. They had their Iowa imbroglio- fiasco in the Iowa caucus… President Trump’s approval ratings, according to Gallup are the highest they’ve ever been 49% approve, 50% disapprove, that’s much higher than they were when he was elected… Tomorrow, he is about to be acquitted in the impeachment trial and impeachment that Speaker Pelosi did not even want to do,” Tapper said. “So this is for Democrats a very, very frustrating week. And I think that the speech… got under her skin and she let it show that it bothered her in a way that usually she’s better at hiding.”
In reaction to Tapper’s tweet, Blum wrote, “Trump was heckled, walked out on, and had the speaker of the house rip his speech up on camera, for f—‘s sake. History didn’t start yesterday.”
Tapper later deleted the fact-challenged tweet and reposted it to correctly state Biden was referring to the servicemembers who’ve died following exposure to the burn pits.
“I deleted the original tweet and rewrote because Biden’s reference to flag-draped coffins of soldiers was NOT about KIA, but rather burn pit victims. Sorry about that!” Tapper wrote.
The CNN anchor went on to tout his coverage of the effects burn pits have on veterans, writing, “The burn pit issue is very important and we’ve covered it a great deal.” He also shared a CNN article of him honoring the 13 servicemen killed in the Kabul attack.
Tapper declined to comment on the record.
Tapper offered complimentary coverage to Biden on Tuesday, calling his State of the Union performance “fairly solid.”
Earlier Tuesday, the CNN anchor suggested Biden was not “getting credit” for his handling of the ongoing Russia-Ukraine crisis.
“One of the problems Biden has is he’s not getting credit for even the things the public likes. That’s just a fact,” Tapper said during a panel discussion. “If you look at the new CNN poll, only 42% trusts his decision-making on Ukraine, though the vast majority approves of sanctions.”
“And Biden, I think, it’s just empirically factual that he has led the way even when he allowed Europe to act as though they’re leading the way on that,” Tapper continued. “The vast majority of the American people don’t want boots on the ground. He said that he’s not going to have boots on the ground. So he’s not getting credit for the things he’s handling okay.”
On how Biden could change the direction of his polling, the “Lead” host said the president “has an argument to make about the economy,” but that the “inflation headwinds are ruining it.”