This report is based on an upcoming book, "American Woman," written by Katie Rogers of the New York Times, which focuses on modern first ladies.
The book details an incident that occurred on January 19, 2022, following a press conference held by President Biden. The conference was marked by several gaffes and factual errors made by the President, the most notable of which was his comment suggesting that a minor incursion by Russia into Ukraine would not be a significant issue. This comment was made a month before Russia invaded Ukraine, leading to criticism of President Biden's comment as being weak.
Following the press conference, President Biden and his top aides gathered in the Treaty Room, the President's study in the executive residence. It was at this point that the First Lady entered the room. According to Rogers, the look on Jill Biden's face indicated that she was not pleased with how the press conference had unfolded. She reportedly asked the aides, "Where were you guys? Where was the person who was going to end the press conference?"
Rogers suggests that this incident demonstrates Jill Biden's role as her husband's "fiercest protector." However, this interpretation has been met with criticism. Some argue that it raises questions about the President's ability to handle situations independently and the extent to which the First Lady is controlling him.
The book also suggests that Jill Biden's dislike of former President Trump was a significant factor in Joe Biden's decision to run for President and to seek re-election, despite his age. Rogers writes, "The amount of work Joe takes home with him from the Oval Office is daunting — he brings stacks of briefing books to the residence each evening — and she knows how much the job is draining him."
This revelation has led to concerns about the pressure being placed on President Biden. Critics argue that it is not in his best interests to continue in a role that is so demanding, particularly given his age.
The report also highlights Jill Biden's presence at one of the few solo press conferences held by President Biden. It was noted that she was seated at the front of the State Dining Room, leading to speculation that she was there to prompt her husband to end the conference if necessary.
The White House press office has also been accused of limiting access to President Biden. It has reportedly introduced a prescreening process to select which reporters are allowed to attend large indoor events. This has led to allegations that those most aligned with the administration are most likely to be invited.
In response to these reports, President Biden appeared to be defensive, leading to further criticism. During a national address, he confused Egyptian President Abdel Fatah Ell-Sisi with the president of Mexico.
These incidents have led to comparisons of the Biden administration to the sinking Titanic, with Jill Biden being accused of merely rearranging the deck chairs. Critics argue that the administration is in decline, and that the First Lady's attempts to control the situation are not enough to prevent it.