Associated Press File Photo / Former Vice President Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential candidate, touches his face as he speaks to members of the clergy and community leaders at Bethel AME Church in Wilmington, Delaware, in June.

Biden again firing blanks

Expected Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden displayed a lack of understanding about U.S. history and the Second Amendment during a recent interview about gun control with Wired.

Attempting to make a coherent point in a rambling discussion, he said AR-15s "should be outlawed." Some things always have been off the table, he said. "From the very beginning," he continued, "you weren't allowed to have certain weapons. You weren't allowed to own a cannon during the Revolutionary War as an individual."

However, the National Park Service debunked that assertion in an explanation about privateer vessels, which were employed during the war because the U.S. had no navy of its own. Although the Continental Congress formalized the commissioning process of such vessels and established uniform rules of conduct, nearly 800 vessels — many equipped with cannon — were commissioned as privateers during the war.

Politifact, hoping to justify Biden's claim, failed to do so, eventually getting two experts to say, "It seems highly unlikely that there were restrictions on the private ownership" of cannons, and "I am not aware of a ban on any arms in colonial America. There were controls on people or locations, but not bans on types of arms."

Biden's campaign also could not cite any law that outlawed the weapons.


Still Russia, Russia, Russia

The memory of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-California, is either short or dimming. In trying to discuss with MSNBC reports that Russia may have paid bounties for United States service personnel killed in Afghanistan, she said "Trump lets the Russians get away with murder."

Of course, the speaker already knew that Trump — as he and national security adviser Robert O'Brien explained — had not been briefed about the bounties because intelligence officials had not found corroboration for the report.

And yet Pelosi persisted about the dereliction of duty by the president and Republicans in Congress involving Russia, naming the annexation of Crimea, the invasion of eastern Ukraine, and a "list [that] goes on and on."

However, it was the Democratic administration of President Barack Obama, who fecklessly did nothing — to the protest of Republicans — in 2014 when Russia seized Crimea and invaded Ukraine. Indeed, it was the Trump administration that reversed Obama's policy and sold arms to Ukraine for its defense against Russia.

Pelosi even voted with most of her House colleagues in 2014 to affirm Ukraine's territorial integrity but did nothing to change the Obama administration's inaction on the issue.


Ex-presidential privilege

President Barack Obama had a documented problem with being late for meetings while in the White House. Now, it seems, that habit has spilled over to the publication of his memoirs. And, apparently, he's tired of hearing how late he is.

The book was scheduled to be published in mid-2019, but a year later its nonpublication "remains among the touchiest of topics," The New York Times reported recently.

Obama, termed "a deliberate writer prone to procrastination — and lengthy digression," supposedly finished a draft of what was supposed to be 600 to 800 pages earlier this year. But, according to The Times, he had been struggling to keep his work less than 1,000 pages and now is said to be considering splitting the work in two to get something in print before the end of the year.

He also has been free about telling friends that his wife's book, "Becoming," was written with a ghostwriter while "I am writing every word myself, and that's why it's taking longer."

The pair reportedly received a combined advance of $65 million for their memoirs.


Motor City fraud

For Democrats who allege voter fraud in the country is negligible, Detroit is this week's example.

The city of Detroit recently was forced to remove nearly 2,500 dead people and 4,800 duplicate registrations from its voter rolls after being hit with a lawsuit by the Public Interest Legal Foundation, which had been studying the maintenance of city voter lists since 2017.

Outside liberal groups attempted to come to the city's defense, but they weren't able to do much when the lawsuit was dropped after the city pared its rolls.

"This is another win for election integrity," J. Christian Anderson, president and general counsel for the watchdog agency, said. "This case wasn't complicated. The city of Detroit could have started to fix these problems before litigation, but didn't. Other jurisdictions should take note — if you don't act on solid data that your rolls are corrupted with dead and duplicate registrations, you will be sued."

Detroit is no stranger to election fraud.

Last year, election clerk Sherikia L. Hawkins was charged with several felony counts for altering absentee ballots during the 2018 election, and in 2016 37% of the city's precincts showed more votes than the number of voters tallied.