Joe Biden asks whether dead congresswoman is in audience in gaffe during speech

Joe Biden made a gaffe in asking whether Jackie Walorski, the former Republican representative for the state of Indiana, was in the audience, when the congresswoman had died in a car crash in August.

Joe Biden asked for Jackie Walorski, the former Republican representative for the state of Indiana who died in a car crash
Joe Biden asked for Jackie Walorski, the former Republican representative for the state of Indiana who died in a car crash

The 79-year-old president made the blunder at a conference on hunger, nutrition and health.

Joe Biden thanked those for who played a part in the bill including Jackie Walorski.

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The president looked round the room in Washington and said: "Jackie, are you here? Where's Jackie? She must not be here" on Wednesday.

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White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre field a flurry of questions during the press briefing saying that Ms Walorski was "top of mind" for Mr Biden –as he was due to meet the congresswomen’s family to sign a bill renaming a veterans' affairs clinic in Indiana after her.

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She did not acknowledge that the president had misspoken saying "All of you may have views on how I am answering it, but I'm answering the question to the way that he saw it and to the way that we see it."

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Ms Walorski's brother, Keith told the New York Post that President Biden was doing the best he could and that he was not angry about the gaffe stating "Yeah it was a big mess-up today. Inexcusable? No. Unforgivable? No. I'm not gonna hold it against him. I just feel sorry for him."

He added: Mr Biden is "doing the best he can do with what he's got right now"

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President Biden had called Ms Walorski's family to offer his condolences after she died.