OPINION: This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is under fire for falsely claiming that “all” Americans who wanted to leave Afghanistan “have come out.”
During an exchange with a reporter, Schumer seemingly told the lie while trying to defend the Biden administration’s disastrous handling of the Afghanistan withdrawal.
Below is a transcript of the exchange:
REPORTER: We’ve heard a lot of the pullout from Afghanistan would have gone somewhat poorly no matter who did it. But it’s on Joe Biden’s watch as president. How will what happened to affect Democrats’ chances moving into midterms?
SCHUMER: They’ll be a job for congressional oversight. There always is. But at the moment, actually, I’m still focused on trying to get some of those brave Afghans out. The Americans, all of whom wanted to come out, have come out. Praise God. But there are a lot of Afghans who risked their lives for our soldiers and others. Many got out, some didn’t. And I’m still working on trying to get some of them out.
A particularly poignant story: There’s an orchestra of young people, co-ed, the Taliban hates them, they hate music, and they hate boys and girls performing. We tried to get them out. I spoke to Gen. [Mark] Milley about a number of different cases, including that one. They got up to the gate and the Taliban checkpoint turned them back.
So, now the hope is we can figure out a way — the State Department has worked out the borders are going to be safe to cross for three or four countries, and maybe they can get out that way. But, so right now the focus is still on trying to get some of these folks out, and then there’ll be time for oversight.
A report from PolitiFact — a far-left fact-checking website — noted that Schumer’s claim was not true.
A spokesperson for Schumer has since admitted that the senator’s claim was inaccurate.
“He misspoke and he regrets the confusion his comments have caused,” his spokesperson told PolitiFact in an email. “He intended to say, as he has been saying, that the U.S. will get everyone out that wants to get out. And he will keep working with the Biden Administration to help everyone who wants to get out.”
“A spokesperson for Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has conceded that the New York Democrat falsely claimed that “all” Americans who wanted to leave Afghanistan ‘have come out.’ Government officials say that fewer than 100 U.S. citizens and an unknown number of U.S. legal permanent residents, who want to leave Afghanistan are still in the country,” PolitiFact wrote.