First lady Jill Biden has reportedly wielded influence over President Joe Biden’s decisions, directly participated in vetting White House officials, and worked to protect her husband from lengthy press conferences.
Jill Biden confronted senior members of the president’s staff after Joe Biden spoke at a conference in January, demanding to know who was supposed to end the conference, The New York Times reported Monday, citing a witness to the confrontation.
Joe Biden answered questions for nearly two hours at the press conference, starting from a list of pre-selected reporters, and then opening it up to the floor, with one reporter asking about Americans being concerned about his mental health.
The first lady also vetted former White House press secretary Jen Psaki and “has been involved in the hiring of [Joe Biden’s] press staff and other senior aides,” the outlet reported.
The White House did not immediately respond to an inquiry from the Daily Caller on which specific aides Jill Biden has been involved in hiring.
Jill Biden’s reported influence in the White House comes as Joe Biden has been scrutinized for being led off stage by the first lady, and appearing to be physically led away from reporters’ questions by the Easter Bunny.
Jill Biden has been appearing frequently on the campaign trail, traveling to states including Georgia, Florida, Tennessee and Wisconsin, as Joe Biden’s poll numbers remain underwater weeks before the midterms.
The first lady’s heavy campaign focus differentiates herself from Michelle Obama and Melania Trump, who preferred to stay away from heavy politicking months before the midterms.
“Today we are seeing Jill Biden too capitalizing on her greater popularity in comparison to her husband’s, but unlike some of her predecessors, she started this months ago, traveling for example to Arizona, Nevada, and Kentucky in March 2022 in a tour connected with the midterms, to fundraise and to promote some of the more bipartisan bills that have since passed, and highlighting her role as an educator,” Katherine Sibley, director of American Studies Program at St. Joseph’s University, told the Hill. (RELATED: Jill Biden Says Hispanics Are As ‘Unique’ As Tacos At ‘LatinX IncluXion Luncheon’)
“She does not offend people in a way that a president can because she’s much less polarizing and political,” Jill Biden’s former press secretary Michael LaRosa told The New York Times. “It’s why she was sent all over rural Iowa and New Hampshire during the campaign and why she can go places now that the president can’t.”