Political News

Fact check: Biden way overstates the number of military deaths and cases from Covid

Posted September 9, 2020 6:50 p.m. EDT

— In a campaign speech in Michigan focused on manufacturing and union support, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden closed out his remarks Wednesday by reading from a list of US troop fatalities.

Biden told the audience that he carries an updated list with him of the number of troops lost and wounded in Afghanistan and Iraq on the back of his schedule.

After reading several figures of soldiers who had died or been wounded, the former vice president said there had been 6,114 "military Covid deaths" and 118,984 "military Covid [infections]."

Facts First: This is wrong -- and not just by a little. Biden overstated the number of military Covid deaths by 6,107 and infections by nearly 79,000. There have been seven deaths in the military due to Covid-19 and 40,026 cases as of September 9, according to the Defense Department.

A Biden campaign aide told CNN that Biden misspoke, accidentally citing Michigan numbers of Covid-19 deaths and cases instead of military numbers.

The Johns Hopkins coronavirus tracker reports 6,811 deaths from the virus in Michigan, not 6,114. And the number of cases in the state, according to Hopkins, is 118,902.

Our commenting policy has changed. If you would like to comment, please share on social media using the icons below and comment there.