President Biden raised eyebrows with an odd gaffe during his press conference following a summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin, in which he appeared to mistakenly use the name of his own predecessor when discussing the Russian leader.
Biden spoke after Putin gave a separate press conference, and was reflecting on what he said about the Arctic.
“I caught part of President, uh, Tru– uh, Putin’s press conference, and he talked about the need for us to have some kind of modus operandi where the Arctic was in fact a free zone,” Biden said.
House Republicans were quick to point out the error.
Twitter users quickly took notice, with more than 2,900 likes and 1,100 retweets. A tweet observing the mix-up posted by CNN reporter Kaitlan Collins drew more than 17,000 likes and 1,400 retweets.
This was not the president’s first goof of the week. At the G-7 summit Sunday, Biden mixed up Libya and Syria – not once, but three times – while discussing humanitarian aid to countries torn apart by civil war.
He first discussed possibly working with Russia in providing “vital assistance” to “Libya” – a “population that’s in real trouble.” Then he said Russia had bitten off more than it can chew with its intervention in “Syria” but then added “Libya” to the mix.
“As long as they’re there without the ability to bring about some order in the region, you can’t do that very well without providing for the basic economic needs of people,” Biden said soon after. “So, I’m hopeful that we can find an accommodation where we can save the lives of people in, for example, in Libya.”
Biden’s aides later brushed off the apparent gaffe, saying he had meant to say Syria when saying Libya.
(Credit : Fox News’ Bradford Betz contributed to this report.)