White House officials quickly raced to cover up another one of President Joe Biden’s signature verbal blunders on Friday, this time explaining to Americans that the commander-in-chief definitely hadn’t read his teleprompter instructions out loud during a speech earlier in the day.
The 79-year-old Biden has a decades-long track record of embarrassing mistakes, from telling African Americans they “ain’t black” if they support former President Donald Trump to mixing up the nations of Sweden and Switzerland during a speech to NATO in June.
Much to the dismay of his White House handlers, the president on Friday managed to add another concerning slip-up to the mix. While giving a speech about an executive order concerning abortion access, Biden inadvertenly read off the teleprompter instructions he was supposed to be following.
“‘It is noteworthy that the percentage of women who register to vote and cast a ballot is consistently higher than the percentage of men who do so.’ End of quote. Repeat the line,” the president said, before indeed repeating a portion of the quote he had just read.
While a number of social media users were quick to point out Biden’s obvious verbal blunder, White House officials began claiming that the mistake hadn’t even happened in the first place.
“No. He said, ‘Let me repeat that line,’” White House Assistant Press Secretary Emilie Simons wrote on Twitter, in response to a video of the speech which clearly depicted the president only saying “repeat the line.”
White House officials then went so far as to change the official transcript of Biden’s address, claiming, despite the unambiguous video evidence to the contrary, that the president had said “Let me repeat the line.”
Social media users were quick to point out how ridiculous the White House’s efforts to re-write the president’s speech were.
“It would be something that people would forget about by the end of the day, but when you brazenly lie about it, that keeps it around longer,” wrote one Twitter user.
“Why lie?” another responded to Simons, the assistant press secretary. “Are you trying to become the next head of the Ministry of Truth?”