Biden Misdirects Taylor Swift Shoutout

President refers to 'Britney's tour' in Brazil
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 20, 2023 3:26 PM CST
Biden's Reference to Taylor Swift Goes Awry
President Biden talks with Jose Rojas of Jennie-O Turkey on Monday after pardoning Liberty.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Despite her near-total name recognition, Taylor Swift was confused for Britney Spears at the White House on Monday. The slip came when President Biden made a pop culture reference during a ceremony to pardon two turkeys on the South Lawn, NBC News reports. The president was saying that Liberty and Bell traveled more than 1,000 miles and beat overwhelming odds to be spared before Thanksgiving. "You could say it's even harder than getting a ticket to the Renaissance tour or, or Britney's tour," Biden said. "She's down, it's kind of warm in Brazil right now."

It's Swift who's performing on her Eras Tour in Brazil, where it is indeed warm; Spears is not touring now. Neither has a Renaissance tour—that's Beyoncé. The topic may have begun with Steve Lykken, chairman of the National Turkey Federation, who said Sunday that the two turkeys had been listening to music lately. "I can confirm they are, in fact, Swifties," Lykken said. For Biden, the timing was awkward, as the gaffe came on his 81st birthday. "As much of you know, it's difficult turning 60," he joked to the South Lawn gathering on Monday.

The leading Republican presidential candidate, Donald Trump, has offered baffling quotes of his own recently, as when he confused Biden's administration with Barack Obama's and mixed up a couple of the Bushes. Polls suggest many prospective voters think Biden and Trump, 77, are both too old to run for president again. Swift fared better in an NBC poll conducted this month. When asked, 94% of registered voters recognized the singer's name. And her approval ratings were solid: 40% said they have a positive view of Swift, and just 16% reported having a negative opinion. (More President Biden stories.)

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