Five viral moments from Biden’s State of the Union
President Biden delivered his first State of the Union address on Tuesday under the shadow of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, soaring inflation and the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Yet the address was also notable for numerous viral moments, from an audience member heckling the president to a standing ovation for a retiring Supreme Court justice.
Here are the biggest viral moments of Biden’s speech.
Biden’s big gaffe
Schumer shows his enthusiasm for Biden’s speech
Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer’s (D-NY) over-enthusiastic response to Biden sent Twitter into overdrive after he started his standing ovation a little early.
“Unlike the two trillion tax cut passed in the previous administration that benefited the top one percent of Americans,” Biden started to say of his predecessor, former President Trump, during his remarks.
The cameras cut to Schumer, who stood up alone while Biden was midsentence, clapping. He looked across the aisle with a grin, and then sat back down.
Biden continued, saying “the American rescue plan helped rescue people and left no one behind.”
Schumer again shot out of his chair, this time joined by many of his Democratic colleagues, who began giving Biden thunderous applause.
Schumer’s caught-on-camera false start was widely shared on social media as Biden’s speech continued, with many calling for his awkward moment to be ‘gif’ed immediately.
Here’s the Sen. Schumer clip. pic.twitter.com/NKfgIRUx7s
— Jeremy Art (@cspanJeremy) March 2, 2022
“Why doesn’t Joe just wear a Pfizer pin instead of the flag? We should know know who he’s really working for,” Boebert tweeted.
Rep. Lauren Boebert, ever classless and attention-seeking, yells out “You put them in, 13 of them” when Biden mentions flag-draped coffins coming home from Afghanistan. #SOTU pic.twitter.com/GnHHNG8weY
— The Recount (@therecount) March 2, 2022
“Tonight, I’d like to honor someone who has dedicated his life to serving this country: Justice Breyer — an Army veteran, Constitutional scholar, retiring Justice of the United States Supreme Court,” Biden said. “Justice Breyer, thank you for your service.”
Among the many who commented on the moment was Democratic Party strategist and former Bernie Sanders adviser Chuck Rocha, who tweeted, “Omg Justice Breyer is so damn cute with his reaction”.
Ok but can we revisit this wholesome moment with Justice Breyer ☺️✨ #SOTU
— kelechi (@its_kelechi) March 2, 2022
— Howard Mortman (@HowardMortman) March 2, 2022
Biden makes ‘fund the police’ trend on Twitter
President Biden was met with huge cheers from members of Congress, including many Republicans, with his line on the police.
“We should all agree: The answer is not to defund the police. The answer is to FUND the police. Fund them. Fund them,” he said as the chamber erupted in loud cheers in a rare bipartisan show of support.
He called on Congress “to pass proven measures to reduce gun violence” and ban assault weapons and high-capacity magazines and instead repeal “the liability shield that makes gun manufacturers the only industry in America that can’t be sued” during his Tuesday address.
However, while Biden was cheered on by Congress, many on Twitter engaged in heated debated over “defund the police” vs “fund the police”.
“Let’s not abandon our streets. Or choose between safety and equal justice,” President Biden says. “We should all agree: The answer is not to defund the police. The answer is to fund the police. Fund them with resources and training they need to protect our communities.” pic.twitter.com/vito8wKYdz
— NBC News (@NBCNews) March 2, 2022