The White House confirmed Sunday that President Joe Biden’s call for regime change was not part of his prepared speech.
“For God’s sake, this man cannot remain in power,” Biden said at the conclusion of his speech, referring to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Biden’s quip prompted administration officials to scramble and walk back his comment in an effort to reassure the world that the United States was not calling for regime change in Russia.
Axios cites “a top official” who confirmed the line was not on Biden’s prepared text or on his teleprompter. The Washington Post cited “a person familiar with the speech” who also said Biden’s line was not planned.
During the 2020 presidential campaign, Biden repeatedly campaigned on the idea that he would be a better president than President Donald Trump because of his understanding of the gravity of the presidency.