DC Trawler

Joe Biden doesn’t know the difference between Portugal and Poland

Joe Biden is travelling in Europe this week, and he’s really excited about it because he’s always had a great fondness for the people of Australia. As Nile Gardiner at the Telegraph notes, being a heartbeat away from the presidency will never move ol’ Joe a heartbeat closer to reality:

Over the weekend the US vice president attended the Munich Security Conference where he delivered a speech on the Obama administration’s foreign policy…

Biden has a well-earned reputation as a gaffe-maker extraordinaire, and this speech was no exception. In a key passage on the Eurozone debt crisis, Biden referred to Portugal as Poland, a mistake subsequently corrected in the official White House transcript:

We have seen positive steps recently to address the eurozone crisis, with the European Central Bank pledging to stand behind countries willing to launch reforms, and with Greece, Ireland, Poland* [*sic-Portugal], Spain and Italy all taking important steps to put their economies on a sounder path. Governments across the eurozone must also remain focused on growth and jobs. These may be fundamentally European problems, requiring European solutions, but their resolution has tremendous impact on the United States of America and on the global economy.

Needless to say, Poland is not even a member of the Eurozone, and its economy is in considerably better shape than that of debt-ridden Portugal.

It could’ve been worse. There are all sorts of words Joe could’ve said instead:

  • Portland
  • Porcupine
  • Pork rinds
  • Porpoise
  • Porridge
  • Porthole
  • Porno
  • Porky’s
  • Porky’s II: The Next Day

At least he blurted out the name of a country. He had a pretty good day, by Biden standards.

And let’s just take a moment to appreciate the hard work of the people who have to correct the official White House transcripts whenever Joe Biden is permitted to speak. Just imagine having to figure out what he meant to say and then changing it to that. How exhausting. Your tax dollars are an inadequate compensation.

P.S. If you think this is unfair and I’m being a big meanie, I kind of doubt you’d feel the same way if Sarah Palin had said it.