Critics swarmed after President Joe Biden stumbled through a comment referring to the Russian government as a “kleptocracy.”
Biden presented a request on Thursday to provide another $33 billion in aid to Ukraine — on the heels of the $13.6 billion in aid that Congress passed in March — which he argued should be designated as “emergency spending” so that it would not have to be offset by cuts to spending in other areas.
The president went on to request authorization from Congress to put more direct pressure on the Russian oligarchs — which he said that he planned to exert by seizing their assets and “ill-begotten gains” — but he appeared to struggle when he got to the word “kleptocracy.”
Biden's brain just broke, again. pic.twitter.com/tuZub9v1IX
— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) April 28, 2022
Biden said that he wanted that authorization to “enhance our underlying effort to accommodate the Russian oligarchs and make sure we take their ill-begotten gains … heh … we’re going to accommodate them.”
“We’re going to seize their yachts, their luxury homes, and other ill-begotten gains of Putin’s kleptocra — uh, yeah,” Biden continued. “Kleptocracy. Klept — the guys who are the kleptocracy.”
The president paused then and appeared to laugh at himself briefly before adding, “but these are bad guys.”
But the majority of the critics flooded Twitter with comments about the use of the word “kleptocracy” — with a number suggesting that, given allegations of pay-to-play schemes involving Hunter Biden selling access to his father while he was Vice President of the United States, the irony was too rich to be accidental.
“Whichever White House speechwriter put the word ‘kleptocracy’ in Biden’s prompter this morning is either a moron or a resistance fighter inside the West Wing who knew exactly what they were doing,” Townhall managing editor Spencer Brown added.
“To the person who typed the word ‘Kleptocracy’ into Biden’s teleprompter…is this your first day on the job???” Keith Malinak wondered.
Comedian Tim Young commented, “Joe Biden struggling to say ‘Kleptocracy,’ which is ironic since his family literally is one.”
“Biden‘s Ranking of Bad Individuals: Out: ‘Corn Pop was a bad dude.’ In: ‘Putin’s Klep, klep, kl, kleptocracy, gonna klep… these are bad guys…,'” Brown added.
“Bold moves from the White House using ‘kleptocracy’ in a Biden speech,” GOP national press secretary Emma Vaughn responded.