The hosts of “The View” are showing President Biden grace this week, after he mistakenly called out for a deceased congresswoman in a room full of people. In fact, the women argued on Thursday that the backlash to the moment was nothing but ageist.
While speaking at the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health on Wednesday, Biden called out for Rep. Jackie Walorski, asking “Jackie, are you here? Where’s Jackie? I think she wasn’t going to be here – to help make this a reality.” Naturally, the moment was swarmed upon because Walorski died in a car accident in early August.
At a press conference later, press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre attempted to explain the moment to reporters by saying Walorski “was top of mind for the president,” and he simply misspoke. And for their part, the hosts of “The View” largely understood.
“You know, my gosh, come on,” Whoopi Goldberg said. “You can’t go after him for, you know, not giving aid to Florida or not tackling the infrastructure. And he’s giving aid to Ukraine. So you can’t go after him for that. But you can go after him for forgetting that someone has passed. I mean, and she passed last month, not like 100 years ago, OK? Because we dealt with that as well, where people said, you know, ‘That person who died 100 years ago did a great job.’”
Whoopi was of course referring back to 2017, when Donald Trump said, ““Frederick Douglass is an example of somebody who’s done an amazing job and is getting recognized more and more, I notice.”
But for Sunny Hostin, the backlash Biden faced was more rooted in ageism than anything else.
“You know, I think what it really shows is that this country is so ageist,” she said. “This country has a problem with age. You know, you go to other countries and our elders are revered. They’re revered because of the knowledge that they have acquired. And this is a man who has worked in government his entire life. This is a man who probably had a relationship with this woman. And yes, she probably was top of mind!”
Hostin added that she was thinking of her own grandmother recently, who passed away five years ago, and still nearly tried to call her on the phone. Meanwhile, Joy Behar criticized the Republican party at large for being so keen on calling out any gaffes by the president.
“I mean, they have weaponized the gaffes, they’ve said that he’s senile,” she said. “You know, I found a Gallup poll from 1980 that showed that the number one concern Americans had about Ronald Reagan was that, quote, ‘He puts his foot in his mouth without thinking or considering the consequences.’ And he is the patron saint of the Republican Party!”
That said, hosts Sara Haines and Alyssa Farah Griffin noted that the handling of the mistake, particularly with the press, could have been executed better.
You can watch the full segment from “The View” in the video above.