President Biden on Monday returned to Camp David, resuming a vacation that was briefly interrupted by a return to the White House to address the nation about the deteriorating conditions in Afghanistan.
Mr. Biden began his vacation last week as Taliban insurgents swept through Afghanistan, taking control of major cities before seizing Kabul on Sunday.
While chaos and uncertainty reigned in Afghanistan, Mr. Biden made no public appearances all weekend save a photo released by the White House showing the president on a teleconference with top advisors.
As criticism from both parties mounted over Afghanistan’s fall to the Taliban, the president took a break from his vacation. He arrived at the White House Monday afternoon and delivered a speech from the East Room that ended without taking questions from the press.
A little over four hours after his arrival in Washington, Mr. Biden was back aboard the Marine One helicopter en route to the presidential retreat in Maryland’s Catoctin Mountain Park.
The resumption of his vacation sparked mockery and criticism from Republican leaders.
Sen. Tom Cotton, Arkansas Republican, tweeted the president’s itinerary and wrote, “This can’t be real.”
Rep. Jim Banks, Indiana Republican, simply tweeted “unbelievable” before following up with a lengthier statement.
“Our Commander in Hiding refusing to answer a single question before heading back to the retreat is shameful,” he continued.
Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel also blasted the president.
“Biden pointed fingers at everyone else for his disaster, refused to take questions and now is headed back on vacation,” she tweeted. “Shameful.”