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Joe Biden calls Charlie Baker ‘Charlie Parker’ during national address

Former vice president Joe Biden.Hannah Yoon/The New York Times

Former vice president Joe Biden addressed the nation Monday in an effort to reach Americans regarding concerns over the coronavirus outbreak. The 2020 Democratic front-runner called on President Donald Trump, who would later deliver his own daily briefing, to “put politics aside," “give us the unvarnished truth," and “meet the moment, like governors all across this nation are doing.”

Biden then offered a shout-out to governors across the country who are providing what Biden called a “lesson in leadership," — including Mass. Governor Charlie Baker, who Biden mistakenly called “Governor Charlie Parker of Massachusetts.”

Baker’s name was interspersed with governors Mike DeWine of Ohio, Larry Hogan of Maryland, Gavin Newson of California, and Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan. The error occurred about 14 minutes and 45 seconds into the 20 minute stream, which was recorded from Biden’s Wilmington, Del., home.


The 78-year-old Democrat has been criticized for his verbal missteps on the campaign trail. He recently called a woman a “lying, dog-faced pony soldier" at a campaign stop in New Hampshire, confused New Hampshire for Nevada during a rally after the first-in-the nation primary, and mixed up his wife and sister in a Super Tuesday speech.

Biden used his address on Monday to escalate his criticism of President Trump’s handling of the pandemic:

“The president needs to ... end the infighting and [the] bickering with his own administration. Listen to the scientists who provide clear guidance,” he said. “The American people are not getting clear leadership, clear action, clear accountability.”

Biden has spent the last week at home making calls to lawmakers, meeting with advisors, and has kept a relatively low profile, according to the Washington Post.

Brittany Bowker can be reached at Follow her @brittbowker and also on Instagram @brittbowker.