In 1974, Joe Biden gave a very good, extremely horny interview to Kitty Kelley. Just about the only thing that didn’t make it into the article, which ran in Washingtonian Magazine, was a mysterious anti-semitic joke Biden made to another senator. You’d think a joke that uncouth would be funny—but sadly, you thought wrong.

The punchline, Washingtonian’s Andrew Beaujon, discovered this week, actually ran a few weeks later after Biden’s chief of staff wrote the magazine calling the allegation “incorrect and untrue.”

So, in a rebuttal letter to the editor titled, “The Author Replies,” Kelley revealed the joke: a one-liner about a politician being called a “dirty Jew.”

With regard to the anti-semitic punchline, Senator Biden related an anecdote to Senator Eagleton about a county in Delaware where Senator Biden said it’s not good to be Irish-Catholic, which Senator Eagleton is, but it’s even worse to be a Jew. Senator Biden told about being at a dinner in the county and he quoted a man telling him, “You’re all right, but we’ve got to get rid of that dirty Jew Roth.” Senator Biden then told Senator Eagleton, “And [Senator William V.] Roth isn’t even Jewish.”

I guess in all fairness to Joe Biden the correction wasn’t totally wrong—hard to call that a joke.

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