President Biden had to pause for bouts of coughing during a public appearance at the White House Tuesday despite testing negative for COVID-19 over the weekend following his “rebound” infection.
Mr. Biden, 79, interrupted his speech on the South Lawn during the signing ceremony for Congress’ $280 billion semiconductor bill with several coughing fits, and he paused at one point to sip water to clear his throat.
“Excuse me, I’m sorry,” Mr. Biden told the crowd gathered for the event. “I’m going to take another sip of water.”
Mr. Biden also was seen blowing his nose as members of Congress gathered to witness him sign the legislation into law.
Voice of America journalist Steve Herman commented on Twitter that Tuesday’s address marked “the most difficulty @POTUS has had getting through prepared remarks in a while as he struggles with repeated coughing/throat clearing.”
The president was also seen coughing Monday while in eastern Kentucky to survey flooding damage in the state.
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Mr. Biden was forced into two prolonged periods of self-imposed isolation as he battled his original case of COVID-19 followed by a “rebound” case.
The president’s physician, Dr. Kevin O’Connor, said in a statement Saturday that Mr. Biden “continues to feel very well” after testing negative for the virus.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre assured reporters Tuesday afternoon that the coughs were no cause for concern.
“What he’s experiencing right now is the lingering effects of COVID, which is something I’m sure many of us who have had COVID have endured,” she said. “And so that’s what you’re seeing at this time.”
For more information, visit The Washington Times COVID-19 resource page.