NBC Washington Update: The blog and Twitter rumors WAMU picked up were apparently not true, as a spokeswoman for the VP's office told the Washington Post that Biden was not near Union Station Tuesday afternoon. From the Post:
“It was a classic case of miscommunication,” MTA spokesman Terry Owens said. “We had a VIP move at Union Station yesterday afternoon and, as is protocol, all movement stops. When that situation was clear, the trains were allowed to leave, stranding some of our passengers. We apologize.”
“He wasn’t even in the District,” Press Secretary Elizabeth Alexander wrote in an e-mail. “He went from Ohio [Tuesday] back to Delaware.”
MARC passengers at Union Station yesterday found themselves waiting for the next train because Vice President Joe Biden's secret service blocked off a platform, according to reports on Twitter. Apparently, they've had to get used to it.
Baltimore blog Inside Charm City caught wind of Biden snarling up train commutes at Union Station Tuesday afternoon. They've been on a crusade since 2009 to keep tabs on the veep's commutes and how they affect the other commuters.
Biden's made no bones about his love of travel-by-rail; while a senator, he took the train home to Delaware every night.
The platforms in question at Union Station are reportedly closed temporarily while Biden boards the train.
One of the Inside Charm City's sources, Twitter user superridiculous, appealed to his "bro" Joe Biden to let people get home on the 4:25 p.m. Brunswick line train.
@joebiden hey bro stop preventing us from going home...#unionstation is stopping passengers from getting home because of u...#marcfail
Biden, it should be noted, did not respond via Twitter. Although it doesn't look like he often updates his feed.
What apparently happened, according to MTA, is that the trains (the 4:25 p.m. trains on the Brunswick and Penn lines) were supposed to wait until a certain "VIP" boarded and then let everyone else on the train. But before letting everyone else on the train, they left on schedule.
MTA apologized, saying: "Amtrak customer service staff contacted the office that coordinates train movements in and out of Union Station and asked them to hold trains 875 and 532 until the police escort was complete. Despite getting confirmation, this clearly did not happen and the trains were permitted to depart on-time."
The agency promises that they're going to try to keep the mix-up from happening again ... although judging from the multiple times Inside Charm City's already seen Biden's entourage cause commute confusion, one might wonder if that's possible.
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