On Friday, March 19, a video of President Joe Biden stumbling and falling while making his way up the stairs of Air Force One was widely circulated on social media.
The incident took place at the Joint Base Andrews in Maryland moments before the 78-year-old president took off to visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and to meet with Asian American leaders in the aftermath of a shooting that left eight people, including six Asian women, dead in Atlanta, Georgia.
The clip, which was shot from multiple angles, shows Biden tripping and falling as many as three times as he ascended the stairs before regaining his composure. Once he gets back up, he gives a quick salute before entering the aircraft.
White House Says 'It Was Very Windy'
White House Press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told White House pool reporters the president was "doing fine" after the fall. "It was very windy. I almost fell coming up the steps myself. He is doing 100 percent," she told reporters. "He's doing fine. He's preparing for the trip just fine."
However, conservatives, including former President Donald Trump's son Donald Trump Jr. pointed out that the weather report for Joint Base Andrews on Friday showed wind speeds of 14 mph, which is considered as a light to moderate breeze and not enough to knock over a grown man. Here are some of the tweets:
Right-wing website National File cited weather experts saying that wind speeds of at least 40-45 miles per hour are required to knock a person weighing 100 pounds, which is significantly lighten than Biden, off their feet.
"What does it say about the health status of the president when a weak breeze can knock him down 3 times?" asked one user, while another commented, "It's not the wind, it's the dementia kicking in. He's no longer fit to run the country. He is suffering from serious neurological problems!"
Biden's fall comes amid growing concerns over the ageing president's mental fitness for office following a series of repeated gaffes and instances of him either becoming confused or tongue-tied. On Thursday, he referred to his vice president, Kamala Harris, as "President Harris," as previously reported.
This is not the first time the president has stumbled while walking up to the Air Force One. Last month, Biden has just alighted from his vehicle on the tarmac at New Castle Air National Guard Base in Delaware for a trip back to Washington, DC. As he climbed the stairs, Biden lost his footing but managed to maintain his balance as he held onto the railing with his right hand.