President Joe Biden attended the Quad Leaders’ Summit in Tokyo on Tuesday and, during a sitdown with freshly-elected Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, pretended to walk out on the leader.
The supposedly humorous moment occurred as Albanese recounted previous interactions with the United States government, specifically a time over three decades ago when he met with lobbying groups like the Sierra Club, Planned Parenthood, and the National Rifle Association.
At the mention of the gun-rights group, Biden stood up and made it look as if he was walking out of the meeting. The prime minister and others laughed at the president’s antics.
Albanese remembered coming to the U.S. as a State Department guest.
“You could design a theme [for the program], and mine was — I wanted to see the interaction of groups with the US government,” he noted. “So I did everything from the National Rifle Association to the Sierra Club to Planned Parenthood to the full — the full kit and caboodle across the spectrum.”
As he approached the end of his list, Biden stood up and made it appear as though he was going to walk out of the meeting, while those in attendance chuckled. He turned around, however, and claimed that Albanese was “brave” to meet with the NRA over thirty years ago.
“You’re a brave man,” Biden chirped. “The Sierra Club and the National Rifle …”
”But it was an — an opportunity to see the — the full diversity of the way that the country operates,” reported Albanese, adding, “the US State Department was good enough as well to manage to justify a trip to Vegas as well.”
Some on social media thought the stunt was strange, especially given that this occurred on the same day as the Robb Elementary School shooting in Uvalde, Texas that claimed the lives of 19 students and two teachers, as of this reporting.
Joe Biden walks out after Anthony Albanese’s NRA comment.
The National Rifle Association of America is a gun rights advocacy group based in the US.
Just happens to be before the Sh00t1ng.. Yeah right…
What are the odds??? pic.twitter.com/4xfxSMjf30
— Aware Australia (@AwareAus) May 25, 2022
Then the irony of it when within hours of this, there was yet another mass shooting of young school children 😢
— Robo #Mate 🇦🇺 (@sUrrEal_pLaY) May 25, 2022
Others mentioned that Albanese seems like Australia’s answer to President Biden:
Albanese talks about his single mum more often than Biden refers to his dead son Beau, who gets a mention at the most inappropriate times.
— Kamila (@Splodge_Humbug) May 26, 2022
Have you heard Albanese on the radio? He is Australia’s Biden.
I don’t think I can listen to him for much longsh ker
— Hunter 🇷🇺 (@mgztt180) May 26, 2022
New PM Albanese “has also established a rapport with US President Joe Biden, which could be explained by the many things they have in common, particularly their difficulty in getting across briefs and answering press questions.” https://t.co/t38QyW4EnT
— Michael O’Rourke (@MichaelACT123) May 26, 2022
it’s interesting seeing Anthony Albanese given the Joe Biden treatment by right wing media/online creators. I think there are some similarities (centre-left leaders who don’t seem threatening, can’t be painted as radical) but also speaks to the unoriginality of the ecosystem.
— dr cam wilson (monkey pox-ology phd) (@cameronwilson) May 25, 2022
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