US President Joe Biden, 80, tripped and fell over a sandbag on Thursday, June 1, as he was handing out diplomas at the US Air Force Academy in Colorado. According to White House representatives, the President seems to be doing just fine now. CNN reports that he walked over to his seat no problem after falling down. At the end of the ceremony, he was seen jogging to his vehicle with a smile.
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The US president had given a speech to graduates of the Academy and spent more than 90 minutes handing out graduation certificates and congratulating them. The video, which has now gone viral, shows him landing on his right hip before a group of men help him back up. It also shows sandbags on stage, which had been used to weigh down two teleprompters. Biden has joked about the incident:
I got sandbagged!
This isn't the first time the President loses his balance
President Biden, who is running for a second term in office, has made a habit of losing his balance in front of cameras. In fact, this is the fourth time he has fallen down since the beginning of his term. Only weeks ago, the President lost his balance in Hiroshima, Japan, as he chose to ignore the railing put in place to help him down the stairs. Last year, he fell from his bike during a ride in Delaware, and he also slipped on the steps leading up to his Air Force One plane, twice. Thankfully, the President was not hurt in any of these incidents.
Rumour has it, the President also bumped his head while getting off his helicopter as he arrived at the White House. Several images show him rubbing the back of his head while walking back inside the building, but the White House has not reacted to these images yet.
Also, in 2020, the President broke his foot while playing with his German Shepherd, and he had to wear an orthopedic boot for several weeks.
Biden's age 'is an issue' according to Hillary Clinton
A lot of people on Twitter have blamed these falls on the President's old age, with one woman even calling him a 'victim of elder abuse', saying his family should be ashamed of themselves. However, many have also defended him, saying he simply tripped on a sandbag, as anyone could have.
In his speech to graduates in Colorado, Biden joked about his age, which his political opponents often use as a point of attack.
When I was graduating from high school 300 years ago — (laughter) — I applied to the Naval Academy.
After the President lost his balance during the G7 summit in Hiroshima, Japan, Financial Times editor Edward Luce asked former First Lady and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton if age would be an issue in the President's reelection campaign.
His age is an issue, and people have every right to consider it.
However, she has also expressed her support for the current President.
But, you know, he has this great saying - and I think he's right - don't judge him for running against the Almighty but against the alternative. I am of the camp that I think he's determined to run; he has a good record that, three years ago, people would not have predicted would have gotten done.
If he is reelected, President Biden will be 82 when he is sworn in, and 86 by the end of his second term. His main opponent for now, former President Trump, is 76.
A presidential habit?
When he was still in office, President Trump also had his fair share of tripping on things, or having his hair blown out by the wind. In 2020, Trump had to tip-toe down a very slippery ramp after giving his speech at West Point.
The former US President reacted to his successor (and rival) falling down on stage, in a very unexpected way.
Well, I hope he wasn't hurt.
Trump did not seem aware of the incident, as he asked the lady to explain what had happened to him. He also made a reference to his own struggles with balance, when he was seen struggling to get down a ramp in 2020.
The whole thing is crazy. You've got to be careful about that. Because you don't want that. Even if you have to tip toe down a ramp!
Daily Mail: 'I got sandbagged!': Biden laughs off embarrassing fall at Air Force Academy commencement ceremony - the fourth public tumble of 80-year-old's presidency - as he arrives safely back at White House
CNN: White House says Biden is fine after tripping on sandbag and falling on stage at Air Force Academy commencement
The White House: Remarks by President Biden at the United States Air Force Academy Class of 2023 Commencement Ceremony
Fox News: Trump reacts to Biden's Air Force commencement fall: 'That's not inspiring'
Fox News: Hillary Clinton says Biden's age is a legitimate issue: 'People have every right to consider it'