A spokesperson for President Joe Biden is being slammed on social media after she said that one of the president’s priorities during his trip to Maui was ensuring that residents knew he had “been there” for them “since day one.”
The president and First Lady Jill Biden finally showed up to Maui on Monday, nearly two weeks after wildfires swept across the island — killing more than 111 people, including children, and leaving hundreds still unaccounted for.
Speaking with reporters aboard Air Force One, Biden spokesperson Olivia Dalton stated that one of the president’s priorities would be to “make sure that he communicates to [Maui residents] that not only have we been there since day one, has he been there since day one.”
Biden spokesperson Olivia Dalton says Biden will "make sure that he communicates to [Maui residents] that not only have we been there since day one, has he been there since day one…" 🤔 pic.twitter.com/NgK2quOhxf
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) August 21, 2023
However, despite Dalton’s claim, social media users were quick to point out where Biden actually was on “day one” — lounging on the beach in Delaware.
Podcast host Stephen L. Miller responded to the audio of Dalton’s comments with a photo of the president lounging on the beach.
— Stephen L. Miller (@redsteeze) August 21, 2023
After that beach vacation, Biden was asked by reporters for comment about the deadly wildfires — to which he smirked and responded: “No comment.”
Even after facing significant backlash for this outrageous response to the tragedy, the White House still did not add a trip to Maui to Biden’s schedule. Instead, he was slated to give a campaign speech in Wisconsin before once again heading on vacation — this time to Lake Tahoe.
As he left the White House to board Marine One for this trip, he was once again asked by reporters for comment about Maui — and he again smirked and refused to respond.
Biden again SMIRKS as he ignores reporters asking for comment on the rising death toll of the Maui wildfires pic.twitter.com/EYSkUM00e3
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) August 15, 2023
The backlash for this incident appeared to push the White House to do damage control, as the president and first lady’s trip to Maui was announced just one day later — cutting their planned vacation to Lake Tahoe short.
“The President and First Lady will travel to Maui on Monday, August 21, to meet with first responders, survivors, as well as federal, state, and local officials, in the wake of deadly wildfires on the island,” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre wrote in a tweet on August 16.
The President and First Lady will travel to Maui on Monday, August 21 to meet with first responders, survivors, as well as federal, state, and local officials, in the wake of deadly wildfires on the island.https://t.co/N3rWx3Dbak
— Karine Jean-Pierre (@PressSec) August 16, 2023
Upon finally arriving on the island, Biden was met with outraged locals holding signs that read “You’re too late!” and “Actions speak louder than words.”
As Joe Biden finally arrives in Maui, he's met by OUTRAGED locals holding signs that read:
"You're too late!"
"Actions speak louder than words."
Just brutal. pic.twitter.com/tSVWcdKyq3
— Charlie Kirk (@charliekirk11) August 21, 2023