Donald Trump has accused U.S. press outlets of ignoring President Joe Biden's repeated stumbles on the stairs of Air Force One, and suggested Vice President Kamala Harris will soon take over the Oval Office.
'That tumble was terrible. It wasn't really one, it was three, and it wasn't mentioned for the most part in the lamestream media,' Trump told Newsmax in a phone interview on Monday.
Study: Biden Administration Has Successfully Reduced Media Coverage Of Border Crisis By 867% https://t.co/z0NCLZ0lQX— The Babylon Bee (@TheBabylonBee) March 22, 2021
'It's terrible, the whole thing is incredible. There's no longer freedom of the press,' he added.
On Friday afternoon, the homepages of MSNBC, CBS News, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times and New York Times had no mention of Biden's stumbling incident hours earlier in the day at Joint Base Andrews.
Foreign press outlets were much more willing to cover Biden's repeated stumbles, with major outlets of all political stripes in the UK, Australia and even Spain devoting prominent homepage coverage to the incident.
The White House quickly issued assurances that Biden was not injured in the incident, and has tried to downplay it with various explanations, but the lack of U.S. coverage quickly drew comparisons to an incident at West Point last year.
In June, Trump was seen taking shuffling baby-steps down a West Point ramp after delivering a commencement speech, leading pundits from CNN and MSNBC to quickly raise concerns about his health.
In Monday's interview, Trump again defended his West Point shuffling, which he has been vociferous about since the day of the incident.
'Actually when I went down the ramp at West Point, which was like a sheet of ice with no railing, no nothing -- great planning -- I wanted to go inch by inch because the last thing I wanted to do was take a tumble like Biden did,' he said.
Newsmax host Greg Kelly asked Trump whether he was surprised by the different approaches many U.S. outlets took in covering his shuffle and Biden's tumble.
'Were you as shocked as I was, or maybe you weren't maybe you expected that to happen?' Kelly asked. 'I expected it, actually,' Trump replied.
Trump also told Kelly that he believes that Biden may also be in mental decline and too confused to understand the executive orders he signs.
'There's something going on, it's crazy. What's happening is crazy and you wonder whether or not all of the things that he's signing, whether or not he understands what he's signing, because this is worse than Bernie Sanders at its worst point,' Trump said.
'We never thought this could happen. Bernie Sanders on steroids wouldn't be signing what this guy is signing,' Trump said.
Kelly pressed Trump on whether he believes Democrats will try to use the 25th Amendment to remove Biden and install Harris as president, a claim Trump frequently made on the campaign trail.
'That's right. Now, well, a lot of people said when they brought it out because it takes a while to institute and when they brought it out, they said they really need it for Biden, just in case he gets in. So we'll see,' Trump said.
'Look, I hope — that's a very serious thing and I hope that never happens,' he added.
On Monday, the White House blamed the 'tricky' stairs on Air Force One for Biden's stumbles, after initially blaming the wind.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Biden, 78, was '100 per cent fine' but she didn't say whether or not he was examined by a doctor after he fell multiple times trying to board the 747 presidential aircraft for his trip to Atlanta. A medical team always travels with the president where ever he goes.
An old man can fall. Nothing wrong with it. I am surprised by all the media coverage of Biden’s fall. Wherever we look in our world, triviality matters more than substance.— Murad Ismael (@murad_ismael) March 20, 2021
'He's 100% fine, I don't know if you've been up those steps they're a little tricky sometimes,' Psaki said Monday at her daily press briefing.
And she punted on whether or not a doctor examined the president.
'I'm not aware of that being required. There's, of course, a doctor who travels with the president, any president of the United States, but I'm not aware of it needing actual, extensive medical attention,' she said.
She didn't clarify when reporters at the briefing pointed out she didn't say no.
'I'm not trying to be a, there's a doctor who travels with him. He was walking around, as you all saw, by the end of the day so I'm just trying to be completely transparent. He is absolutely fine,' she noted.
Biden was boarding the aircraft at Joint Base Andrews just before noon on Friday for a flight to Atlanta when he stumbled. He gripped on to the railing, steadied himself and kept going but lost his footing a second time and then a third.
On the third trip, he fell to his knees. He got back up then carried on up the stairs before giving a salute at the top then disappearing into the aircraft.
He walked around Atlanta after his slip, including boarding and exiting Marine One without incident. During his several hours on the ground he walked around Emory College campus for meetings with local officials and Asian American groups. He also gave remarks on the rising tide of hate crimes against Asian Americans.
This article has been adapted from its original source.
© Associated Newspapers Ltd.