US President Joe Biden apparently looked for a recently deceased MP when he appeared in the audience. Is “Jackie…here?” Where’s Jackie?” Biden asked at the White House on Wednesday (local time) as he thanked supporters of initiatives to end hunger.
“I think she didn’t want to be here,” the 79-year-old said, referring to Republican Congressman Jackie Walorski, who died in a car accident in August.
White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre later said Biden wanted to commend the lawmakers’ “incredible work” on the issue.
In addition, Walorski was very present in his thoughts because he had invited her family to the White House on Friday, said Jean-Pierre. Biden will then sign legislation naming a clinic for veterans after Walorski. “Of course she was on his mind because of that,” said Jean-Pierre.
When asked repeatedly whether Biden made an embarrassing slip or whether the Walorski family is now entitled to an apology, the spokeswoman said: “My answer will certainly not change.”
The Democrat Biden is known for occasionally making slips of the tongue – especially when he doesn’t stick to prepared speech texts. Some Republicans are using this to question Biden’s mental fitness for the presidency.
Walorski died in August at the age of 58 in a car accident in her home state of Indiana along with two employees. According to police, a woman on the opposite lane lost control of her vehicle and steered head-on into Walorski’s car. Everyone involved died. (dpa)
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