Biden botches Lincoln's ‘Better Angeles’ quote & then jokes about his own age - Hindustan Times

‘Gaffe machine’ Biden botches Lincoln's ‘Better Angeles’ quote and then jokes about his own age: WATCH

ByShweta Kukreti
Feb 26, 2024 08:47 PM IST

US President Joe Biden, who once humorously called himself a “gaffe machine”, faced difficulties while attempting to quote Abraham Lincoln during his speech.

US President Joe Biden, who once humorously called himself a “gaffe machine”, faced difficulties while attempting to quote Abraham Lincoln during his speech at the Governors Ball Dinner on Saturday.

US President Joe Biden (REUTERS)
US President Joe Biden (REUTERS)

Before a gathering of state officials, Biden, 81, who is currently in campaign mode ahead of the November presidential election, started reading from a prepared text a quotation by the 16th US President on the subject of a divided nation.

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“Standing here in front of this portrait of the man behind me,” the POTUS stated.

“He said, ‘We — the better angels,” he said, ‘We must address the counsel — and adjust to the better angels of our nature.’ And we do the — and we do well to remember what else he said. He said, ‘We’re not enemies, but friends.’"

“This is in the middle of — this is in the — in the part of the Civil War,” he continued.

“He said: ‘We’re not enemies, but [we’re] friends, we must not be enemies.”

It seems that the US President was trying to quote from Lincoln's March 1861 inaugural address.

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What did Abraham Lincoln say?

During his first inaugural address, Lincoln told the divided nation: “We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection.”

“The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave to everly living heart and health stone all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched — as surely they will be — by the better angels of our nature.”

He delivered that address ahead of the Confederate troops' firing on Fort Sumter, formally commencing the Civil War, and not in the midst of it, as Biden stated.

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Biden makes fun of his age

Following his latest mishap, Biden even joked about his age, but made no mention of the apparent error.

“Folks — and I’ve been around. I know I don’t look it. I’ve been around a long while, though,” Biden joked while addressing the nation’s governors.

“And I mean this sincerely, we’ve gotten — politics has gotten too bitter — Democrats and Republicans. Politics has gotten too personally [sic], and it just is – it’s just not like it was,” he added.

Biden's newest blunder comes as some Democrats have raised alarm over his use of notecards to communicate with supporters and peak on policy issues at various events.

According to a new poll, the vast majority of American voters (86 percent) believe Biden is too elderly to serve another term in office.

Meanwhile, 62 percent of ABC News/Ipsos poll respondents believe former President Donald Trump, 77, is too elderly to serve again as US President.

Fifty-nine percent of respondents believe that both main 2024 rivals are too old, while 27 percent believe that just the current president is old enough to be excluded from contention.

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