After a Republican National Committee social media account tried to make a big deal out of President Joe Biden petting a dog during his Hawaii visit, the White House bit back.
On Monday, RNC Research tweeted: “Biden gets distracted by a dog: “That’s some hot ground, man!” The tweet was posted alongside a video of the president petting a golden retriever while talking to a FEMA worker in Hawaii amid the fatal wildfires.
In response, White House Deputy Press Secretary Andrew Bates called out the Republican account in defence of Mr Biden, writing: “He’s petting one of the dogs that’s working hard searching for remains so survivors who’ve lost loved ones can have closure.”
“This criticism is classless and stupid,” Mr Bates added.
“What’s the boss’s name?” Mr Biden can be heard asking the FEMA employee. The president is a dog owner himself.
He's petting one of the dogs that's working hard searching for remains so survivors who've lost loved ones can have closure.
This criticism is classless and stupid. https://t.co/uJf99LxT1U
— Andrew Bates (@AndrewJBates46) August 21, 2023
The president is visiting Hawaii after the fires claimed at least 115 lives as of Monday night, after 100 per cent of residential properties have been searched in the aftermath of the disaster.
The attempt at making news comes after Mr Biden has been been criticised for his response to the fires. He and First Lady Jill Biden flew to Hawaii, where the president promised the people of Lahaina that the government would be with them “for as long as it takes.”
He added, “May God bless all those we’ve lost, may God find those who we haven’t determined yet, and may God bless you all.”