December 3, 2021

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Biden briefly transfers power to Harris while he gets colonoscopy | TheHill – The Hill

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President BidenJoe BidenHouse Democrats push vote on social spending plan to Friday Fauci says all adults should ‘go get boosted’ Senate confirms Park Service director after years of acting heads MORE temporarily transferred power to Vice President Harris on Friday before he went under anesthesia for a routine colonoscopy.

Biden had procedure done at Walter Reed Medical Center as part of his annual physical, White House press secretary Jen PsakiJen PsakiOn The Money — House Democrats ready to Build Back Better Harris’s communications director to depart next month White House tells businesses to move forward with vaccine mandate MORE said in a statement.

“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,” Psaki said. “The Vice President will work from her office in the West Wing during this time.”


After transferring power at 10:10 a.m., Biden completed his colonoscopy and resumed his duties as president at 11:35 on Friday morning. He spoke with Harris and chief of staff Ron KlainRon KlainThe Memo: Democrats may rue pursuit of Bannon Manchin uncertain Biden plan will address inflation Biden aides offer praise for Harris after critical CNN report MORE at that time and “was in good spirits,” Psaki said.

The White House will release a summary of the results of Biden’s physical later Friday, Psaki said.


Biden, who will turn 79 on Saturday, was the oldest president in U.S. history at the time he was sworn-in. His age has been a source of attacks from Republicans, and it has made the results of his annual physical a point of interest.

Biden last released the results of a medical assessment in December 2019, during the presidential campaign. That assessment was completed by his longtime physician, Kevin O’Connor, whom Biden has tapped to serve as the top physician in the White House.

The transfer of power while the president is under anesthesia is not unusual, as Psaki noted, though it was a point of contention during the Trump administration.

Former Trump press secretary Stephanie GrishamStephanie GrishamGrisham thinks Trump will run in 2024 and have no ‘guardrails’ Sunday shows preview: Senate votes to raise debt ceiling; Facebook whistleblower blasts company during testimony CNN’s Brianna Keilar, Admiral Giroir spar over Trump administration’s COVID-19 response MORE alleged that then-President TrumpDonald TrumpGOP Senate candidate says Fauci is ‘mass murderer,’ should be jailed rather than ‘hero’ Rittenhouse Overnight Health Care — Presented by Emergent Biosolutions — Pfizer, US strike COVID-19 pill deal On The Money — House Democrats ready to Build Back Better MORE would not go under anesthesia for a colonoscopy when he was abruptly taken to Walter Reed in 2019 because he didn’t want to transfer power to his vice president, Mike PenceMichael (Mike) Richard PenceHouse Democrats push vote on social spending plan to Friday Trump is learning what executive privilege really means Trump blasts ex-Pence aide after she said he admitted he lost MORE.

Updated at 12:11 p.m.

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