President Joe Biden laughed about and seemed to discount the deaths of two young brothers who died of fentanyl poisoning, in an attempt to mock Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene during a speech.
Biden took heat for chuckling while recounting a the story of a mother who testified to the House Homeland Security Committee on Tuesday, about how her children, Caleb, 20, and Kyler, 18, died from unintentionally ingesting fentanyl.
Greene tweeted a video of the Michigan mother, Rebecca Kiessling, tearfully explaining that her two boys had died in July 2020, when attempting to purchase oral pain killer Percocet, but actually received fatal doses of fentanyl.
“It’s because fentaynl got into this country,” Kiessling responded when Greene asked if her son’s would still be alive if the federal government secured the Southern border.
“Listen to this mother, who lost two children to fentanyl poisoning, tell the truth about both of her son’s murders because of the Biden administrations refusal to secure our border and stop the Cartel’s from murdering Americans everyday by Chinese fentanyl,” Greene captioned the testimony video on Tuesday.
During an address at the House Democratic Caucus Issues Conference on Wednesday, Biden said that more politicians like Green getting elected into office would send conservatives “running” to the left.
“Isn’t she amazing?” the 46th president jeered. “Oof.”
He went on to note that Green tried to blame him for Kiessling children’s deaths, when it happened during Trump’s term.
“[Greene] was very specific recently, saying that a mom – a poor mother who lost two kids to fentanyl – that I killed her sons,” Biden remarked.
“Well, the interesting thing is that fentanyl they took came during the last administration,” he continued with a laugh.
While Biden did get the facts right, his reaction drew jeers from conservatives, including the Georgia congresswoman.
“It’s shocking that Joe Biden laughs at mothers of children who have died of fentanyl poisoning,” she tweeted on Thursday.
“What’s funny about Americans dying from fentanyl, Joe? The families who have lost loved ones from fentanyl aren’t laughing.”
Kiessling certainly wasn’t amused when she ripped into Biden with a scathing Facebook video.
“How dare you. What is the matter with you,” she asked the president. “Almost every Democrat on the committee offered me condolences, they at least had the decency to do that.”
“You can’t even do that? You have to mock my pain?”
The Michigan mom was “shocked” about the president’s reaction to Greene misspeaking about her boys’ deaths being a result of his policy failures.
“My children died about six months before he became president,” she pointed out.
“There have been failed policies by many administrations and from congress for far too long, ever since there was a surge in drug deaths due to fentanyl … I believe mostly beginning around 2013, so this has been a problem for a long time.”
Kiessling did an impression of Biden glibly laughing about her testimony, and how it happened before he was in office.
“Really, this is how you speak about the death of my sons? Because a congresswoman misspoke? You mock the loss of my sons?” she asked incredulously.
Kiessling then pointed out Biden’s own administration’s failure managing the fentanyl crisis, since he took office in January 2021.
“What about the 22% increase in fentanyl deaths since you became president, since you changed your policy at the borders? She asked.
“That represents tens of thousands of US citizens who died under your watch, an increase in tens of thousands.”
Kiessling said the number of overdose deaths represents twice as many parents suffering from the loss of their child.
“You’re going to keep laughing about those who did die under your watch,” she continued. “Do we have to bring them in so you can look them in the eyes and laugh?”
“What is wrong with you? This is unacceptable,” Kiessling concluded.
“Our president needs to apologize to me, and he needs to be held accountable.”
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said that Biden’s chuckling was taken out of context.
“His words are being mischaracterized by someone who is regularly discredited for things that she says that are really conspiracy theories,” she said about Greene and Fox News.
“And those lies are being parroted by a certain network,”
“When it comes to this President, I believe the American people knows who he is fundamentally, because he’s been around for some time,” she remarked during Thursday’s press briefing.
“They have watched him go through grief, they have watched him deal with really personal loss,” she said about the death of the president’s son Beau.
“So this is a president that understands that.”
Jean-Pierre did not say if Biden would apologize to Kiessling for laughing, as she requested in her Facebook post.
“He expressed sympathy for her last night,” she concluded.
“And his heart goes out to any person, any person who has to go through that type of trauma, that type of hurt.”