Maybe it’s a good thing he was 2,000 miles away.
President Biden had an awkward, flirty moment Monday during a video conference event with health care workers in Arizona, during which he stopped to compliment one nurse for her youthful appearance — even gushing that she looks “like a freshman.”
“Are you a freshman at the university?” Biden asked Brittney Hayes at the end of a conversation in which she had laid out the process for getting shots to people at the State Farm Stadium vaccination site in Glendale.
“Noo. No,” said Hayes, who had described herself as being from the Arizona State University at the start of the talk — but who made clear she was the “head charge nurse” at the vaccination site.
“You look like a freshman!” Biden said, chuckling.
“Why thank you,” she said through her face mask.
But Biden wasn’t done.
After Vice President Kamala Harris took a turn asking questions, Biden continued to show incredulity that Hayes was a medical professional.
“And you’re a — a nurse?” Biden said on the video call, which was streamed publicly.
“I am, I’m a nurse. I’m an RN. I’ve been an RN for about nine years now,” she said. Registered nurses typically have at least two years of college education or a bachelor’s degree.
The president replied: “I know having been a significant consumer of health care, I can tell — I know the vice president knows this, when I say it — doctors let you live, nurses make you want to live. If there’s any angels in heaven, they’re all nurses, male and female. And that’s not an exaggeration. That’s the God’s truth.”
Biden, 78, is infamous for intruding on the personal space of women, sometimes while whispering advice in their ear or impromptu massaging a neck.
Supporters for former President Donald Trump nicknamed him “Creepy Joe” during the 2020 campaign and gleefully circulated montages of him doing so.
Biden was even forced to put out a video near the start of his campaign in 2019 in which he acknowledged making people “uncomfortable” with his tactile gestures and promised to be “much more mindful” in the future.
Biden’s interaction with the nurse came just days after “Saturday Night Live” host Colin Jost joked about his handsy record at the start of the program’s “Weekend Update” segment.
“President Biden said Friday that he will move ahead with his $1.9 trillion stimulus plan with or without Republican support — because this economy needs a massage and Joe Biden isn’t waiting for permission,” Jost cracked.
The president’s virtual tour had more than one uncomfortable moment. In a different presentation, Major Gen. Michael McGuire of the Arizona National Guard told Biden — who ended his 1988 presidential run due to a plagiarism scandal — that other states are welcome to rip off his state’s COVID-19 plan.
“Plagiarism is the highest form of flattery — that’s what we say — so if everyone wants to copy what Arizona is doing, we think we’ve got it figured out here,” McGuire said.