Joe Biden flubs speech appearing to call Ukrainians ‘Iranian people’ during State of the Union

The moment quickly went viral online as political pundits pounced on the video as a sign of the president’s declining mental sharpness.

Justin Vallejo
New York
Wednesday 02 March 2022 03:55 GMT
Biden confuses Iran and Ukraine in State of the Union gaffe
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Joe Biden appeared to confuse or flub a key moment during his State of the Union speech, calling Ukrainians the “Iranian people” while aiming for an inspiring moment of support against Russian aggression.

“Putin may circle Kyiv with tanks, but he’ll never gain the hearts and souls of the Iranian people,” Biden said to an awkward slow clap.

“He’ll never, he’ll never extinguish their love of freedom,” he continued before someone yelled from the crowd and the trepidatious applause grew.

“And he will never, never weaken the resolve of the free world.”

The moment quickly went viral online as videos were widely shared by political commentators like former Trump administration staffer Sebastian Gorka tagging it as an example of a #SenilePresident.

Republican Congressman Thomas Massie kept a running tally of the president’s less-than-audible turns of phrase, asking “Does anyone speak Biden? Can you translate these?…”

Whether it was a stutter, gaffe or geographical confusion, Biden was already facing questions about his “mental sharpness” going into his first State of the Union.

A new poll by ABC News/The Washington Post released on the eve of the speech found that 54 per cent of Americans don’t believe he has the “mental sharpness it takes to serve effectively as president”.

Only 40 per cent believe Biden is mentally sharp enough for the job in a near-180 degree turnaround from 2020, when most Americans, 51 per cent, thought he had the mental acuity for holding office compared to the 43 per cent who didn’t.

The poll also found that 59 per cent of Americans do not think Biden is a strong leader, up from 49 per cent two years ago.

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