Biden is making the trip to Hawaii; however, he drew more backlash when reporters asked a pretty simple question. However, his response may highlight a bigger issue.
On August 17, 2023, Biden was asked about his upcoming trip following all the criticism he’s received.
“Can you tell us about your Hawaii trip, sir?” a reporter was heard asking.
“No, not now. I’m going to be leaving, and I’ll be there on Monday,” Biden responded and walked away.
“Can you tell us about your Hawaii trip, sir?”
BIDEN: “No” pic.twitter.com/ok4wrelK0q
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) August 17, 2023
The statement drew even more criticism and online commentators roasted the President.
Joe Biden should have gone with, “No comment.” https://t.co/pigB8m6KEW
— Steve Guest (@SteveGuest) August 17, 2023
Conservative Kate Hyde made a joke about Biden’s comments, but she wasn’t far off.
Biden hasn’t been briefed on Hawaii. He thinks he and Jill are going for vacation, no one told him it’s for disaster relief yet. Please leave him alone. https://t.co/pn5ywoWPOs
— Kate Hyde (@KateHydeNY) August 17, 2023
One would think that an administration trying to do damage control over their response would provide Joe with his cheat sheet cards.
It was Bloomberg’s Justin Sink who reported Biden’s “no comment” statement that started the PR avalanche.
“After a couple hours on the Rehoboth beach, @potus was asked about the rising death toll in Hawaii,” Sink wrote on X. He said that the president responded with “no comment.” A few hours later a video confirmed Sink’s report.
That was followed by intense backlash until Biden reported that he and the First Lady would travel to the affected areas. The backlash also prompted the White House to release a fact sheet stating that the “whole of government” was helping the area deal with the devastation.
“The Biden-Harris Administration has mobilized a robust whole-of-government response effort to support immediate and long-term rescue and recovery efforts in Maui, Hawaii,” a spokesperson said.