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Video: Biden trips on Air Force One stairs for 5th time at least

U.S. President Joe Biden delivers remarks on gun violence prevention in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington on April 8, 2021. (Yuri Gripas/Abaca Press/TNS)
March 07, 2023

President Joe Biden was filmed stumbling up the stairs to Air Force One on Sunday for the second time in two weeks, and for at least the fifth time since he took office.

While boarding the presidential transport plane at Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, Alabama, Biden briefly tripped about half-way up the stairs. Footage of the moment was posted on Twitter.

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Biden was in Alabama to visit Selma, where he commemorated the 58th anniversary of a historic clash between police and civil rights marchers known as “Bloody Sunday.”

He has stumbled up the Air Force One stairs as recently as Feb. 22, when he fell onto his hands near the top of the stairs. He was departing Warsaw, Poland, where he spoke in support of Ukraine against the Russian invasion following a secretly-planned visit to Kyiv.

The incidents come as the oldest-ever president still has not announced a run for a second term, which would see him reach the age of 86. 

Biden’s physical exam last month found him to be “healthy” and “vigorous,” but Republicans have for years alleged that his mental faculties are in sharp decline. In private conversations, even some Democratic lawmakers say he is too old to be president, as reported by Politico.

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Prior to the latest Air Force One stumbles, Biden’s biggest incident on the stairs came in March 2021, when he fell three times on the way up. That instance saw him catch himself with his hands before falling to one knee, brushing off his pants, and saluting at the top of the stairs.

Biden’s press secretary, Karine Jean-Pierre, told reporters aboard the plane: “It was very windy. I almost fell coming up the stairs myself. He is doing 100 percent.”

Biden also caught himself on the stairs in June 2022 while boarding the plane for an interview with ABC host Jimmy Kimmel, as reported by the New York Post. A month earlier, he had appeared to keep himself from fully stumbling on some of the first steps while boarding, the New York Post reported.

Biden is currently prescribed custom-made shoe inserts to help with a “mild sensory peripheral neuropathy” in both of his feet, according to the report from his latest physical. 

The condition causes an “area of subtle heat/cold sensation deficit” in his feet, which had decreased in size since the previous exam in 2021, the February report said. Peripheral neuropathy can also result in reduced motor control and numbness, according to Cleveland Clinic.