'That Fella Down Under': Biden Fails to Say Australian PM's Name Amid Key AUKUS Speech
05:35 GMT 16.09.2021 (Updated: 18:52 GMT 03.11.2022)
© REUTERS / TOM BRENNERU.S. President Joe Biden delivers remarks on a National Security Initiative virtually with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, both not pictured, inside the East Room at the White House in Washington, U.S., September 15, 2021
Making verbal slip-ups and mumbling incoherently is not uncommon for Joe Biden who once admitted to being in the know about his reputation as "a gaffe machine".
US President Joe Biden appeared to forget the name of Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison during a keynote speech on Wednesday pertaining to the newly-launched Australia-UK-US (AUKUS) defence pact.
The incident took place as Biden, along with Morrison and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, were announcing that their countries would share defence and nuclear submarine secrets, in line with the AUKUS National Security Initiative.
During the handover from Johnson, Biden paused and then did not say Morrison's name when thanking him and the British PM.
"Thank you Boris", POTUS said, adding, "and I want to thank that fella Down Under. Thank you very much, pal. Appreciate it Mr Prime Minister". Shortly after, Biden backtracked and addressed Morrison by name as he thanked him for his partnership.
The gaffe was just the latest in a series of blunders Biden has made since he became president of the United States. On 8 March, POTUS seemingly struggled to remember the name of his Pentagon chief Lloyd Austin during a ceremony to promote two female generals, timed to coincide with International Women's Day.
Earlier, the 46th president twice mispronounced the name of his Secretary of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra and called him by the wrong title.
During the presidential campaign, Biden twice mixed up his rival Donald Trump with George Bush and prompted his supporters to scratch their heads when said that he was running for the Senate.