I read this,

It’s not the first time Biden has voiced this Trump-is-terrible-but-Republicans-are-OK sentiment.

And I find this sentence structure almost always is that "... not the first time" connects verb present perfect tense but with some exceptions,

I want to say this is not the first time I represented a witness in a criminal case.

Is this a mistake? Or who can explain it to me why it should be perfect tense behind "be not the first time"?

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  • I wouldn't say it's wrong, but I would use the present perfect. – Andrew Jun 17 '19 at 4:47

"Not the first time" can be used in any tense.

  • If a future US president were to suspend Habes Corpus it would not be the first time this has been done.
  • When I leave home tomorrow, it will not be the fist time I have done so.
  • When Caesar crossed the Rubicon, it was not the first time this Roman law had been violated.
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  • But all your 3 sentences are in "has/have or had" done style. – Zhang Jun 17 '19 at 5:52
  • I should edit the question to "perfect tense". – Zhang Jun 17 '19 at 5:54

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