Barack Obama returned to the White House on Tuesday for the first time in five years and, as he started speaking, referred to Joe Biden as “vice president.”
“That was a joke,” Obama said, with the current president and current vice president by his side.
He then gave Biden a hug.
“That was all set up. My president, Joe Biden. Vice President Harris,” Obama said.
Obama was at an event tied to the 12th anniversary of the signing of the Affordable Care Act, as well as a proposed fix to a so-called “family glitch.”
As he started his speech in the East Room, Obama quipped that “I heard some changes have been made by the current president since I was last here. Apparently Secret Service agents have to wear aviator glasses now. The Navy mess has been replaced by a Baskin Robbins. And there’s a cat running around. I guarantee you Bo and Sunny would have been very unhappy about.”
“Coming back, even if I have to wear a tie, which i very rarely do these days, give me a chance to visit with some of the incredible people who serve this White House and who serve this country every single day.”
Obama talked about how hard it was to pass the Affordable Care Act. “Despite great odds, Joe and I were determined, because we met too many people on the campaign trail who shared their stories, and our own families had been touched by illness.”
He said that he “intended to get health care passed even if it cost me re-election, which looked for a while like it might.” The crowd in the room laughed.
“The ACA was an example of why you run for office in the first place,” he said. “We are not supposed to do this just to occupy a seat or hang on to power. We are supposed to do this because it is making a difference in the lives of the people who sent us here.”
Obama also made light of the moment when he signed the ACA and Biden was heard telling him, “this is a big f—ing deal!”
When Biden started his remarks, he quipped, “My name is Joe Biden and I’m Barack Obama’s vice president.” He said more seriously to Obama, “Welcome back to the White House, man. It feels like the good old days.”
Before he signed a new executive order on healthcare, Biden quipped, “Barack, let me remind you, it’s a hot mic.”
Happening Now: President Biden, Vice President Harris, and President Obama deliver remarks on the Affordable Care Act and lowering health care costs for families. https://t.co/oP1EMdqbVR
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) April 5, 2022
Biden later posted a photo of himself with Obama in the Oval Office.
It’s an honor to welcome my friend President @BarackObama back to the White House. I look forward to discussing the big step we’re announcing today that would expand coverage under the Affordable Care Act for families and lower health care costs for hardworking Americans. pic.twitter.com/FkLnkB96Jt
— President Biden (@POTUS) April 5, 2022
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