Joe Biden

Pool Reports of February 18, 2022

February 18, 2022

Pool Reports by Christian Datoc, Washington Examiner

Sent: Reports:
February 18, 2022

In-town pool report #1 — checking in

Good afternoon from the White House, where it's currently a crisp 43 degrees.

White House has added a few events to this afternoon's schedule, including President Biden's 2:30pm call with Transatlantic leaders (CLOSED PRESS) and a 4:00pm national update from POTUS on a potential Russian invasion of Ukraine. His remarks can be streamed here:

Deputy National Security Advisor for Cyber and Emerging Technology Anne Neuberger and Deputy National Security Advisor and Deputy NEC Director Daleep Singh will also join WH press secretary Jen Psaki at today's 2:30pm briefing:

Feel free to ping me directly with any questions

February 18, 2022

In-town pool report #2 — 2 min warning

... was just called on the briefing room overhead system.

A reminder that you can stream the briefing here:

February 18, 2022

In-town pool report #3 — POTUS call with Transatlantic leaders

Passing along from the WH:

President Biden's call with Transatlantic leaders started at 1445 PM EST.

February 18, 2022

In-town pool report #4 — briefing ends

… at 3:38pm. Pool will be gathering shortly for POTUS' Ukraine update, scheduled for 4:00pm.

A reminder that you can watch Biden's speech here:

February 18, 2022

In-town pool report #5 — POTUS' call over

Passing along from the WH:

The call with Transatlantic leaders ended at 1533 PM EST.

February 18, 2022

In-town pool report #6 — gathering for Ukraine remarks

… as of 4:00pm. More to follow-

February 18, 2022

In-town pool report #7 — 5 min warning for POTUS

… announced at 4:46pm, tbd if we'll get a 2 min. Pool has been in the Roosevelt Room since 4:14pm

Stream here:

February 18, 2022

In-town pool report #8 — 2 min warning

… at 4:50pm

February 18, 2022

In-town pool report #9 — speech begins

… at 4:54pm. More to follow…

February 18, 2022

In-town pool report #10 — remarks over, questions

POTUS concluded his update at 5:01pm and fielded a few questions from pool. Highlights below, full Q&A quotes to follow

On Zelensky leaving Ukraine: "That's a judgement for him to make… I've spoken with Zelensky a dozen times, maybe more, and in the pursuit of a diplomatic solution it may be a wise choice"

Has Putin made a decision: "I'm convinced" he's made the decision to invade

Allied sanctions package: Biden says most are onboard though some "add-ons" and "detractions" possible

Biden says Putin isn't contemplating nuclear war but it's "hard to read his mind"

"Yes I did," when asked to clarify if he said he's convinced of invasion but adds diplomacy is still "on the table"

February 18, 2022

In-town pool report #11 — travel/photo lid called

... at 5:12pm. One more report coming from me.

February 18, 2022

In-town pool report #12 — full question and answer quotes

See full quotes and audio below. That's all from me, y'all. Enjoy the weekend!


POOL: Do you think that it is wise for President Zelensky to leave Ukraine if an invasion is as imminent as the US as it is?

POTUS: That's a judgment for him to make and a termination as to whether or not — I've spoken with Zelensky a dozen times, maybe more, I don't know, and in the pursuit of a diplomatic solution, it may not be — it may be the wise choice. That's his decision.

POOL: And do you have any indication about whether President Putin has made a decision on whether to invade? Do you feel confident that he definitely made that decision already?

POTUS: As of this moment, I'm convinced he's made the decision.

POOL: There seems to be a unanimity of spirit to do, between the United States and Europe, to do some sanctions or comprehensive sanctions, but is everyone on board with the exact same sanctions that you want to do?

POTUS: Yes, there will be some slight differences, but not — they'll be more add-ons than subtractions.

POOL: President Putin is going to oversee some nuclear drills this weekend. How do you see that happen? What's your reaction to that, sir? Thank you.

POTUS: Well, I don't think he is remotely contemplating nuclear, using nuclear weapons, but I do think it's — I think he is focused on trying to convince the world that he has the ability to change the dynamics in Europe in a way that he cannot. But I don't — how much of it is a cover for just doing exercises and more than that, I just can't — it's hard to read his mind.

POOL: Mr. President, to be clear, you are convinced that President Putin is going to invade Ukraine? Is that what you just said a few moments ago?

POTUS: Yes, I did. Yes.

POOL: So is diplomacy off the table then?

POTUS: No. Until he does, diplomacy is always a possibility.

POOL: What reason do you have to believe he's considering that option at all?

POTUS: We have a significant intelligence capability. Thank you.

Joseph R. Biden, Pool Reports of February 18, 2022 Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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