These are tough times for President Joe Biden with the economy sinking, the border collapsing, and apparent memory issues plaguing the 80-year-old chief executive.
Allegations are increasingly swirling that his administration has not been on point for the residents of East Palestine, Ohio, in the aftermath of the tragic train derailment. But for Biden, the details are something he cannot remember.
Biden is asked if he talked to the Mayor of East Palestine.
“I can't recall…I've talked to everyone there is to talk to”
— ALX 🇺🇸 (@alx) February 24, 2023
Interviewed by ABC News’ David Muir, the Democrat was asked if he had spoken with the Mayor of East Palestine. Biden replied, “I can’t recall…I’ve talked to everyone there is to talk to.”
That’s a far cry from the very public and specific actions of his predecessor. Former President Donald Trump last week traveled to East Palestine and met with state and city officials, including, of course, the mayor.
The White House, apparently not taking too kindly to be upstaged in such a fashion, the next day dispatched Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg.
The cabinet member donned a hard hat and took some photos in town before hastily departing. And Biden cannot even remember if he talked to East Palestine’s mayor after a devastating train derailment that unleashed untold amounts of toxic chemicals into the local area.
An area that, perhaps not coincidentally, is strongly in Trump’s political camp. But that should not matter when it comes to disaster relief.
Further calling into question the White House response to the derailment, Biden was asked by reporters Friday evening if he planned to visit East Palestine. The president had recently returned from Ukraine and was headed to his Delaware home.
Biden responded, “At this point, I’m not. I did a whole video, I mean, um, what the…on…”
At that point a reporter chimed in with “Zoom?”
Biden then remembered the video meeting and declared, “Zoom!” The president added, “All I can think of every time I think of Zoom is that song in my generation, ‘Who’s Zooming who?’”
After that mental stumble, Biden said that he was not requested to travel to East Palestine before he went to Kyiv. However, he had a “long meeting” with his team and spoke to “every single major figure in both Pennsylvania and in Ohio.”
He then added that he is “keeping very close tabs” on the situation. Unfortunately for the White House, the more Biden attempts to explain away the lack of federal reaction, the worse the administration looks.