President Biden gave an address from the White House’s Oval Office Thursday night, when he provided an update on two conflicts happening across the globe, including Israel’s war with Hamas and Russia’s continued fighting in Ukraine. He vowed America would not be on the sidelines of either conflict.
His brief remarks, however, were met with some criticism as Republicans and others accused him of trying to fix problems that he previously caused and attempted to use the slaughtering of Israelis and the current humanitarian crisis in Gaza to request additional funds in the Ukraine conflict.
“The shame of it all is that we wouldn’t be in this terrible position if Joe Biden hadn’t been so weak in Afghanistan, so slow in Ukraine, so pandering to Iran, and so absent from the border,” wrote Nikki Haley, a Republican presidential candidate who is beating him in some head-to-head polls. “The world is on fire, and America needs strong new leadership to deal with it.”
Some critics called his speech “unbelievable” and “completely disgraceful.”
In his Oval Office address, Biden focused on Ukraine, which included him saying he will send an “urgent budget request” to Congress on Friday “to fund America’s national security needs to support our critical partners, including Israel and Ukraine is a smart investment that’s going to pay dividends for American security for generations.”
Haley emphasized Biden’s “weakness” around the globe ahead of the speech and said the blame for the current state should rest on him.
“Biden cozied up to Iran, giving it billions of dollars & easing sanctions. Biden talks a big game on Russia, but was too slow in providing Ukraine with the weapons to beat Russia quickly. Biden’s weakness on Moscow & Tehran has strengthened Beijing,” she wrote.
Sen. Tim Scott, R-SC, who is also seeking the Republican nomination to go against Biden in 2024, posted on X, “Biden gave $6 billion to the number one state sponsor of terrorism.”
He added, “There’s no way around it.”
Scott also joined “Hannity” Thursday evening, when he further discussed President Biden’s address.
“Our ally, Israel, was bombed by a terrorist organization and tonight’s speech focused more on Ukraine than Israel,” the presidential contender said. “That’s unbelievable.”
He also said Biden should have more clearly sent a message to Iran and the consequences they would face if they continue to back terror groups like Hamas and Hezbollah.
Joe Concha, a Fox News contributor, recalled that during the speech, Biden gave himself credit for being the first U.S. president to visit Israel during a wartime.
“Biden has now twice patted himself on the back for being the first American president to go into a war zone. This speech is an absolute mess,” Concha wrote.
Sen. JD Vance, R-Ohio, said Biden appeared to correlate the two global conflicts to “sell the American people” on additional aid to Ukraine, which has warred with Russia for more than 600 days.
“I think what the president did is completely disgraceful. If he wants to sell the American people on $60B more to Ukraine, he shouldn’t use dead Israeli children to do it. It was disgusting,” Vance wrote on X.
Fox News host Sean Hannity addressed the speech during his show on Thursday evening.
“I thought it was cliché,” Hannity said. “I wanted to hear more about the barbaric brutality that took place in Israel, the worst terror attack in their history. I wanted to hear more about the hostages. I wanted to hear more about the Americans killed. I wanted to hear more about what America needs to do in all this.”
Fox News’ Dana Perino said Thursday, just before Hannity, that she said she “didn’t think it was strong.”
“I actually didn’t think it was strong,” Perino said. “I prepared all day to want to love this speech. I prepared all day to want to stand up and cheer but at times I felt like a speech whose pages had been mixed up out of order.”
“I thought he didn’t spend enough time talking about the atrocities of Oct. 7,” she added. Perino applauded Biden for mentioning antisemitism but said, “he rushed that part of the speech and the next thing I know we’re talking about Ukraine.”
Republican congressional candidate JR Majewski described Biden’s speech as a “campaign ad for Trump.”
“That entire Biden speech was a campaign ad for Trump 2024,” Majeski wrote on X. “Trump never gave speeches about how badly we needed to help the world because of the wars that he caused, because he never caused these problems.”
He added, “Joe Biden does NOT deserve another term in office. Frankly, he doesn’t deserve another day in office.”
Democrats widely lauded the speech, and Biden also received praise from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
“I thank Joe Biden for his powerful address. Together, we will not allow hatred destroy freedom, and we will not let terrorists destroy democracy,” Zelenskyy wrote on X. “Ukraine is grateful for all the U.S. support and its unfaltering belief that humanism, freedom, independence, and rules-based international order must always triumph.”
His address came a day after he visited Tel Aviv, where met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Israeli officials in the hopes of containing the crisis in the Gaza Strip from erupting into a wider conflict.
Biden also said he would “keep American troops out of harm’s way,” and that the congressional aid package would “help us build a world that is safer, more peaceful and more prosperous for our children and grandchildren in Israel.”
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