WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. President Joe Biden was startled by a live microphone Monday calling a Fox News reporter a “dumb son of a bitch” on the sidelines of a White House photo op.
As reporters left the room after the event, a reporter from Fox News, the conservatives’ favorite channel, asked if inflation was a political burden.
The Democratic leader, who may not have known his microphone was still on, began to be impassive: “That’s a huge plus. No more inflation.
And then muttered, “Stupid son of a bitch,” before looking down briefly.
A pool reporter who was in the room at the time admitted he couldn’t hear what Biden actually said about the noise.
But he added that he would “draw your attention to the video of the event if you’re curious about what the president really thinks about being quizzed on inflation by Fox’s Peter Doocy.”
Doocy ignored the insult in a later Fox interview.
“Yeah, no one has checked the facts yet and said it wasn’t true,” he said nonchalantly.
Doocy later said Biden called him within the hour and said, “It’s nothing personal, mate.”
When Biden gaped earlier, the White House rushed to explain or retract his comments.
But this time the White House appeared to have no qualms about possessing it and released a transcript of the event which included the comment – ensuring it entered the official historical record.
“Just adding that extra something,” tweeted Katie Rogers, White House correspondent for The New York Times, along with a screenshot of the transcript.