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Biden To Briefly Transfer Power To Harris During 'Routine Colonoscopy'


Last updated 11/20/2021 at 11:43am

AP Photo/Alex Brandon

President Joe Biden speaks about the bipartisan infrastructure bill in the State Dining Room of the White House, Saturday, Nov. 6, 2021, in Washington.

President Joe Biden "will undergo a routine colonoscopy" at Walter Reed Medical Center on Friday and will transfer power to Vice President Kamala Harris while under anesthesia, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said.

Psaki announced early Friday that Biden would be going to Walter Reed for his "routine annual physical." The White House will provide a "written summary" of his visit Friday afternoon. The transfer of power is "set out in the Constitution," and it previously occurred in 2002 and 2007 when former President George W. Bush underwent the same procedure, Psaki noted.

"As was the case when President George W. Bush had the same procedure in 2002 and 2007, and following the process set out in the Constitution, President Biden will transfer power to the Vice President for the brief period of time when he is under anesthesia. The Vice President will work from her office in the West Wing during this time," according to Psaki.

The press has repeatedly asked about Biden's physical, and the press secretary promised information on it would come before the end of the year. Following his physical, Biden will pardon the National Thanksgiving Turkey in a Rose Garden ceremony. This will be the 74th anniversary of the event, according to the White House.

Biden's physical comes amid lackluster approval ratings. One Tipp Insights poll, released November 1, found that 50.2% of respondents disagreed with the statement that the president "is mentally sharp." A Morning Consult/Politico poll released Wednesday also found that 50% of respondents believe Biden is not "stable" and not "in good health."


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