White House: Biden thinks Fetterman is capable amid questions over his health

FILE – Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman, a Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate, speaks during a campaign event in York, Pa., Oct. 8, 2022. An NBC News correspondent who interviewed Fetterman said Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2022 that her reporting should not be seen as commentary on his fitness for office after he suffered a stroke. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, file)

The White House said on Monday that President Biden thinks Pennsylvania Democratic Senate candidate John Fetterman is capable amid questions over his health as he recovers from a stroke he suffered earlier this year.

“The president feels he is very much capable of doing the job,” press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said.

She said Biden has had “many interactions” with Fetterman over the last several months as well as an in-person meeting in September. Biden is set to appear with Fetterman on Thursday at an event in Philadelphia.

“The president has found him to be an impressive individual who is just as capable as always,” Jean-Pierre said, adding that Fetterman, as lieutenant governor of Pennsylvania, is doing the job “with great ability.”

A NBC News interview last week raised fresh questions over Fetterman’s health when he used closed captioning to help him understand dialogue, answering questions orally after reading them on a computer screen. 

The effects of his stroke in May were discussed in the interview, which highlighted some of the difficulty Fetterman has in articulating himself. While it was common knowledge that Fetterman has been using closed captioning when talking to reporters since his stroke, the interview provided viewers with a look at his process and showed him struggling at times to find the correct word.

Fetterman’s health will be in the spotlight on Oct. 25 when he debates Republican Senate candidate Mehmet Oz.

Tags Biden John Fetterman Karine Jean-Pierre

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