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President Joe Biden coughed into his hand Wednesday as he started a White House Roundtable Event, exclaiming he has “a little bit of a cold.”
Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg can be seen laughing during the cough.
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This comes after the White House promised Biden’s annual physical exam would be finished by Jan. 31, now pushed back to Feb. 16.
An administration official said in a statement that the delay “was just a matter of scheduling around what has been a busy and evolving travel schedule in recent weeks.”
View the video below:
Biden, coughing into his hand as his event begins: “Little bit of a cold” pic.twitter.com/wPvwSz0Ivl— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) February 1, 2023
The official added that the findings will be “released publicly in the same manner as last year,” meaning that presidential physician Dr. Kevin O’Connor will issue a report — but not answer journalist questions. O’Connor has never been allowed to brief reporters directly, including when Biden was treated for COVID-19 last year.
Biden is the oldest-ever U.S. president at 80 years old, and if he were re-elected would be 86 at the end of his second term.
His mental acuity is frequently a matter of debate — particularly at an event where he asked, “Where’s Jackie?” as he searched for the late Rep. Jackie Walorski (R-IN) in September, despite publicly mourning her death and even calling her family to offer his condolences in August.
During Biden’s physical in Nov. 2021, the doctor wrote that he investigated Biden’s “perceptibly stiffer” gait and his “increasing frequency and severity of ‘throat clearing’ and coughing during speaking engagements” but found nothing of concern.
“A combination of significant spinal arthritis, post-fracture ‘limp and compensation’ and a mild sensory peripheral neuropathy of the feet are the explanation for the subtle gait changes which I was investigating,” O’Connor wrote.