Biden says ICU nurse would breathe on him ‘to make sure there was a human connection’

President Joe Biden launched into one of his tall tales Tuesday while speaking on healthcare, claiming he once had an ICU nurse who would whisper in his ear and breathe on him “to make sure there was a human connection.”

Speaking at the Kempsville Recreation Center in Virginia Beach, Virginia, the 80-year-old president seemed distracted from the jump when a group of medical workers cheered him as you might expect from high school students. For a split second Biden appeared lost, as if he had forgotten why he was there. The awkward pause resulted in more cheering, which brought him around. Slurring his words incoherently at first, he turned to his right to face the group and began praising the profession.

“And, by the way, you docs are good, but if there’s any angels in Heaven, they’re all nurses — male and female,” Biden said. “You know why? You guys let us, you guys make us — allow us to live. Nurses make you want to live. I’m not joking.”

“You lie there in the ICU, which I’ve done for a long time, and you look at those machines. And you know, if the line goes flat, that it’s over. But you just get tired. You don’t care,” he continued.

The president then launched into a rambling story about the treatment he received from the nurses at Walter Reed when he was hospitalized in 1988 for two life-threatening brain aneurysms.

“When I was at Walter Reed all that time, after a couple of craniotomies, I was lying there. And I had a nurse named Pearl Nelson, military. She’d come in and do things that I don’t think you learn in medical scho- — in nursing school,” Biden said. “She’d whisper in my ear. I didn’t — couldn’t understand her, but she’d whisper, and she’d lean down. She’d actually breathe on me to make sure that I was — there was a connection, a human connection.

“She even went home and brought back her pillow from her own bed because they didn’t — knew the one I had wasn’t comfortable.”

The slurring of his words improved but continued throughout the remarks.

Biden resurrected his “Scranton Joe” personification as he poured it on, speaking about his deceased son Beau, and the automobile crash that took the lives of his first wife and baby daughter.

But the money quote was about Pearl the nurse, and social media users had plenty of thoughts… here’s a quick sampling of responses to the story from Twitter:

Tom Tillison


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