Joe Biden jokingly called a college student in New Hampshire a “lying, dog-faced pony soldier” during a campaign event on Sunday. The student, Madison Moore, of Mercer University in Georgia, had asked Biden how he could remain competitive in the race after his fourth-place finish in last week’s Iowa caucuses.
“It’s a good question,” Biden responded. “Number one: Iowa’s a democratic caucus. You ever been to a caucus? No you haven’t. You’re a lying, dog-faced pony soldier. You said you were; but now you got to be honest. I’m gonna be honest with you. It was a little bit confusing in Iowa.”
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According to Fox News, Biden had used this phrase in January as well as a response to a question about President Obama’s “broken promise that individuals would be guaranteed the option to keep their doctors under the Affordable Care Act.”
At a 2018 campaign event, Biden offered some hints as to the origin of the phrase, “As my brother who loves to use lines from movies, from John Wayne movies, there’s a line in a movie, a John Wayne movie where an Indian chief turns to John Wayne and says, ‘This is a lying, dog-faced pony soldier.'”
However, TMZ first reported that the phrase may have come from the 1952 Tyrone Power film “Pony Soldier.” No line in the movie nonetheless includes the full phrase, “lying, dog-faced pony soldier.”
Moore said Biden had correctly identified her fib about attending a caucus. “I felt he did give some good answers,” Moore said. “It was a little awkward being put on the spot. But he was right. I haven’t been to a caucus. I kind of caved in the moment. So he’s right. He’s right there. But he’s right about the black vote, too. I mean, it’s very important. And the results have shown that people think he doesn’t have that support. So I’m still very skeptical, but I thought he did a good job answering.”