Joe Biden Falsehood #25

FALSEHOOD #25: Biden falsely claimed that a black man invented the light bulb.

He said, “Why in God’s name don’t we teach history in history classes? A Black man invented the lightbulb, not a white guy named Edison.”

EXPLANATION: This is false. Most likely Biden is referring to an African American man named Lewis Latimer. Latimer was credited for inventing modern carbon filaments which improved the light bulb. He was not the inventor of the light bulb, Thomas Edison was.


Massachusetts Institute of Technology. (n.d.). Lewis Latimer Improvement to the carbon-filament used for light bulbs. Lemelson MIT. Retrieved December 5, 2022, from

Ibrahim, N. (2020, September 11). Did a black man invent the lightbulb, as Joe Biden claimed? Snopes. Retrieved December 5, 2022, from

Asmelash, L. (2020, September 4). No, a black man didn’t invent the light bulb. but Lewis Howard Latimer made it better | CNN. CNN. Retrieved December 5, 2022, from

Olson, T. (2020, September 4). Biden claims black man invented light bulb during campaign event. Fox News . Retrieved December 5, 2022, from

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