In an unprecedented transfer, President Joe Biden opted to overlook the commemorative occasion marking the twenty second anniversary of the tragic 9/11 assaults in New York Metropolis, leaving Vice President Kamala Harris to step in and symbolize the administration as an alternative.
The Floor Zero ceremony occurred on Monday whereas Biden was in Alaska the place he was marking the solemn event whereas on his approach again from Vietnam.
The President’s resolution has triggered intense frustration and disappointment among the many households of the two,977 victims who misplaced their lives within the horrific terrorist assault.
It marked the primary occasion in presidential historical past the place the sitting commander-in-chief didn’t make a go to to Manhattan, the Pentagon, or Shanksville, Pennsylvania, to pay homage to the victims of the deadliest terrorist assault on American soil.
The White Home opted to ship Vice President Kamala Harris in his place.
Harris stepping up instead of Biden comes amid fevered hypothesis that she is going to grow to be the subsequent US President ought to Biden recapture the White Home.
On Sunday, she declared herself able to assume the presidency if she was ever required to take action – however she additionally made it some extent to dismiss opponents’ political assaults that Biden is just too previous to hunt a second time period within the Oval Workplace.
As a substitute of visiting these iconic websites of remembrance on Monday, Biden spent two hours at Joint Elmendorf-Richardson in Alaska.
Throughout his go to, he engaged with service members and first responders whereas on his approach again from a 24-hour journey to Hanoi, Vietnam, which had been marred by a slightly chaotic and meandering press convention.
The convention was dropped at an abrupt finish when Biden’s mic was reduce.
He was mid-flow answering questions from reporters when he was interrupted and compelled to move backstage.
The 80-year-old President mentioned: “We talked about stability, we talked in regards to the Third World, excuse me, the Southern Hemisphere has entry to alter. It wasn’t confrontational in any respect…”
However in a dramatic flip of occasions, White Home press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre interjected: “Thanks, everyone. This ends the press convention. Thanks, everybody.”
Bizarrely, jazz music then began enjoying over the loudspeaker, as he appeared to nonetheless be making an attempt to reply questions whereas talking into his microphone.
The music quantity then elevated, prompting Biden to stroll offstage, disappearing behind a black curtain.
The 9/11 ceremonies Biden missed amid the fallout are held yearly at Floor Zero to honor the 1000’s killed on September 11, 2001 on the World Commerce Middle in New York Metropolis, the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia, and in a subject in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.
In addition to Kamala Harris, former New York Metropolis Mayors Rudy Giuliani and Mike Bloomberg have been notable attendees on the service on Monday morning.