Biden says he is ‘first black woman to serve with a black president’

Joe Biden has said he is “proud” to be the first “black woman to serve with a black president” in one of a series of verbal gaffes as the USA celebrated Independence Day.

A week after Mr Biden’s disastrous debate with Donald Trump that has left the former fighting for his political life, the president twisted his words during an interview with Philadelphia’s Wurd radio station, mixing up himself with Kamala Harris, his own vice-president.


Both Mr Obama and Ms Harris made history when they were elected in 2008 and 2020, respectively, him as the first black president and she as both the first black vice-president and the first woman to hold the job.

Earlier in the interview, Mr Biden correctly spoke of having appointed Ms Harris, and the first black woman to the Supreme Court, Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson.

Mr Biden also appeared uncertain when he spoke on The Earl Ingram Show, which is aimed at black listeners in Wisconsin but is also broadcast nationwide.

When asked why voting mattered, Mr Biden delivered an answer that appeared to refer to the Supreme Court’s recent decision to grant Trump considerable immunity to prosecution.

He said: “You need someone, someone who is going to make sure that – the Supreme Court just issued a decision, by the way, that threatens the American principle that we have no kings in America. There’s no one above the law.”


During a four-minute address he said he was “not going anywhere” but he seemed to stumble when he referred to Mr Trump as “one of our colleagues”.

The mistakes will only add to the pressure on Mr Biden to step aside as the Democrat presidential candidate, as the party becomes more concerned about its ability to beat Trump in November.

While defenders of Mr Biden say he has long mixed up words, during his 90-minute debate last week he frequently appeared lost.

While he has admitted to supporters he does not speak as “smoothly” as he used to, questions as to whether he could serve another four years even if he manages to win have intensified. Polls show public support for Mr Biden has dropped markedly since the debate, while trust in Ms Harris has grown.


While a handful of elected Democrats have called for Mr Biden to step aside, most have held off.

There is speculation many are waiting for more detailed polls from battleground states that could emerge in the coming days for a clearer indication of how much support he has lost before speaking out in public.

On Friday, Mr Biden will be scrutinised further when he sits for an interview with ABC News’s  George Stephanopoulos that will air as a prime-time special.

Mr Biden plans to be in Philadelphia on Sunday and hold a full news conference during the Nato summit in Washington next week.

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