Weekend too demanding? After tea with Queen Elizabeth II, the President’s G7 wrap-up presser was rife with misspeaks and stumbles.
Biden Says Queen Elizabeth II “Reminded Me Of My Mother”.
President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden met privately with Queen Elizabeth II at Windsor Castle on Sunday, making Biden the thirteenth U.S. president of the last fourteen to do so, and the fifth to be hosted at Windsor Castle. The Queen did not walk with Biden to inspect the troops, as she did with former president Donald Trump.
Biden told press afterwards that they had discussed Russian prime minister Vladimir Putin and Chinese president Xi Jinping. He added that “She was very generous. I don’t think she’d be insulted but she reminded me of my mother. In terms of the look of her and just the generosity. She was very gracious.”
The President and First Lady join Her Majesty for tea in the State Apartments at Windsor Castle. pic.twitter.com/X2EKGDpoJd
— The Royal Family (@RoyalFamily) June 13, 2021
Biden Stumbles Through G7 Wrap-Up.
Biden also on Saturday held a press conference marking the conclusion of the G7 summit, wherein he confused “Covid” and COVAX, and Syria and Libya, three times each. The president summarized G7 discussions and characterized the Build Back Better World Partnership initiative as a more equitable, values-driven answer to China’s Belt and Road Initiative. Or, to put it another way, “By harassing the full potential of those who are harassing, we’re going to have to try and change things,” the president said. “That’s the whole idea.”
Biden also offered up this patriotic reflection: “[America is] organized on an idea: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men and women are created equal.’ It sounds corny, but it’s real.” (The president of the Untied States thinks the Declaration of Independence “sounds corny, but it’s real”?)
The press conference ended with Biden reluctantly taking a final question, telling a reporter, “I’m going to get in trouble with my pre—my staff. Yeah, go ahead. But pretend that I didn’t answer you.” Asked how Biden justifies “Trump-era steel and aluminum sanctions” to displeased European allies, the president replied, with irritation, “A hundred and twenty days. Give me a break. Need time.”
The official G7 communiqué contains Biden’s 2020 presidential campaign slogan, opening with the line, “We, the leaders of the Group of Seven, met in Cornwall on 11-13 June 2021 determined to beat COVID-19 and build back better,”
Biden Calls Bennett.
Biden congratulated Naftali Bennett on becoming the next prime minister of Israel, as Benjamin Netanyahu railed against the United States in a final speech to the Knesset for Biden’s intended return to the Iran nuclear deal. Netanyahu also divulged the Biden administration’s demands that Israel “freeze settlement building in Judea and Samaria and freeze construction of new Jewish neighborhoods in Jerusalem,” the former prime minister said.
In a statement, Biden said, “My administration is fully committed to working with the new Israeli government to advance security, stability, and peace for Israelis, Palestinians, and people throughout the broader region.”
In a quick embrace of the incoming Israeli government by the Biden administration—unlike its long delay in making contact with Netanyahu upon taking office—Secretary of State Antony Blinken also issued an immediate invitation to Israeli foreign minister Yair Lapid to visit Washington.