‘Is The Sun Getting To You?’: Biden Calls New Coast Guard Graduates ‘Dull’ When They Don’t Clap For Navy Joke


Anders Hagstrom White House Correspondent
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President Joe Biden joked that the graduating class at the Coast Guard Academy was “dull,” after they failed to react to his applause lines and jokes during his commencement speech Wednesday.

Biden referenced the description of the Coast Guard as “that hard nucleus around which the Navy forms in time of war,” though he fumbled with the quote. When the line was met with silence, Biden joked that the graduates were “a really dull class” and suggested the sun was getting to them. (RELATED: Biden’s Families Plan Would Cause Negative Economic Growth, Analysis Shows)

The quote is a longstanding saying within the Coast Guard, but its origins are unclear. President Ronald Reagan referenced the quote in an address to the National Guard Academy in 1988, but he did not use it as an applause line.

Notably, former Vice President Dick Cheney made the same reference when he delivered the commencement speech to the National Guard Academy in 2008, and he did receive applause.

“There’s a saying in your line of work that the U.S. Coast Guard is the ‘hard nucleus about which the Navy forms in time of war’,” Cheney said, pausing for applause according to a transcript.

“I’m not sure what the Navy thinks of that,” he finished.