Right-wing media outlets have tried to manufacture a story falsely claiming that President Joe Biden misread a teleprompter — supposedly reciting an “end of quote” cue that was not meant to be read aloud. In reality, Biden was directly telling his listeners that he was ending a quote. And even after corrections have piled up, some are still trying to depict this moment as some kind of gaffe when it was nothing of the kind.
A quick Google search also shows that Biden has used the “quote … end of quote” construction before. Indeed, he had also used it just the day before, in his remarks on Monday when he nominated Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell for a second term.
During remarks Tuesday, Biden briefly quoted Walmart CEO Doug McMillon, who had extolled the cooperation between the government and private sector in resolving supply-chain interruptions.
Tuesday afternoon, right-wing talk radio host Clay Travis spread a video clip on Twitter, with Travis claiming that Biden “just keeps getting worse.” The clip was only eight seconds long, however, and left out the setup that Biden had begun with a “quote” construction.
Fox News ran an online article claiming that Biden had “appeared to read technical instructions from his teleprompter,” without including any context that Biden was in fact quoting somebody else. The same article and its headline were later updated hours later to include this crucial fact without noting that the article itself had made that mistake. The piece however did include language of a rare correction from the network: “Fox News and several other outlets mistakenly reported that he was reading a teleprompter cue.”
Fox’s corporate cousin the New York Post, however, has continued to characterize Biden’s speech as a “faux pas” even while including the context that he had been quoting somebody.
The far-right site The Gateway Pundit ran a post declaring: “This guy is so lost. We are so screwed.” In addition, the Washington Examiner also posted an article claiming that Biden had made “an audible slip-up when he read off more than he should have during a speech.” But the article itself now appears to have been taken down.