President Joe Biden was heard calling Fox News reporter Peter Doocy a “stupid son of a bitch” on Monday during a White House event.
The incident occurred as Biden finished a White House Competition Council meeting on lowering prices on a variety of products for American families, as CNN reported. According to C-SPAN footage posted on Twitter by CNN chief media correspondent Brian Stelter, Doocy asked Biden, “Would you take a question on inflation? Do you think inflation is a political liability in the midterms?” To which the president replied sardonically on a hot mic: “It’s a great asset, more inflation. What a stupid son of a bitch.”
At the end of a Biden photo op, when reporters shouted Q's hoping he'd respond, Fox's Peter Doocy asked, "Do you think inflation is a political liability in the midterms?" Biden deadpanned: "It's a great asset—more inflation. What a stupid son of a bitch." pic.twitter.com/Tt4ZVz5Ynj
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) January 24, 2022
In an appearance on “Hannity” later Monday evening, Doocy told Fox News anchor Sean Hannity that Biden had contacted him to apologize after the incident, saying that the remark was “nothing personal.” The reporter confirmed that he accepted the apology.
“He cleared the air and I appreciated it. We had a nice call,” Doocy stated. “I don’t need anyone to apologize to me.”
Representatives for the White House did not immediately respond to Variety‘s request for comment.
A similar situation occurred on Thursday when Fox News correspondent Jacqui Heinrich asked Biden a question about the possibility of Russia invading Ukraine. “Why are you waiting on Putin to make the first move, sir?” Heinrich asked. Biden reportedly responded under his breath, “What a stupid question.”
On Friday, Heinrich asked White House press secretary Jen Psaki about the incident, saying, “Is the president aware that he was caught on a hot mic yesterday? Why does he appear to be dismissing the idea of proactive deterrence?”
In response, Psaki said in part: “Well, the President certainly does not dismiss that idea, considering he has taken a lot of steps including supporting and approving the several sanctions that were put out by the Treasury Department just a couple of days ago. I would note that the United States has delivered more security assistance to Ukraine in the last year than any point in history. In the last year alone, we committed $650 million in security assistance to Ukraine; in total, since 2014, we’ve committed $2.7 billion. These deliveries are ongoing, including today there’s more deliveries coming.”
Doocy responded to Biden’s remarks on Fox News’ “The Five,” saying: “Nobody has fact-checked him yet and said it’s not true.”
He added, “I couldn’t even hear him because people were shouting at us to get out but somebody came up in the briefing room a few minutes later and said, did you hear what the president said? And I said no, what? They said, he called you a stupid SOB. And I said did he say SOB? And that person said no.”