Photo of Joe Biden

Remarks in an Exchange With Reporters in New Castle, Delaware

March 26, 2021

The President. What do you got?

World Health Organization Report on the Coronavirus Outbreak

Q. On COVID, sir, do you have any theories about the origins of COVID ahead of the WHO report on the origins of COVID?

The President. I'm sorry, do I have——

Q. Any theories on the origins of the coronavirus in——

The President. No, no, I don't. I have theories, but I'm not a scientist. I'm going to wait until the scientific community makes that judgment.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson of the United Kingdom/North Atlantic Treaty Organization

Q. You spoke to the British Prime Minister. What was the conversation about?

The President. Well, we talked a lot about climate change. We talked a lot about the need also for Britain and the United States to stand together and deal with the whole notion of whether or not NATO stands together, whether we stand united and whether or not I'd be able to come, and I hope I can, to the NATO meeting in—I think it's in late June. So we talked about scheduling and when I'd come over and how we'd work that out.

Q. Any commitments on either side during the call?

The President. No, there was full agreement. One of the things I suggested to do is—we talked about China and the competition they're engaging in in the Belt and Road Initiative. And I suggested we should have, essentially, a similar initiative coming from the democratic states, helping those communities around the world that, in fact, need help.

The President's Grandson Beau Biden, Jr.

Q. What does it mean to have Baby Beau on the plane with you, on Air Force One?

The President. [Laughter] It's really great. It's really——

Georgia's Election Legislation

Q. President Biden, you issued strong words about the Georgia voting bill——

The President. Not as strong as I was really thinking.

Q. Is there anything the White House can do to protect voting rights in Georgia?

The President. Well, we're working on that right now. We don't know quite exactly what we can do at this point. The Justice Department is taking a look as well.

Use of the Filibuster in the Senate

Q. Mr. President, how does the voting issue affect your thinking on the filibuster?

The President. Well, look, we'll see. The question is whether or not—you know, you have to have 50 votes—51 votes to have to win to be able to move the filibuster and any change in the filibuster. And right now that doesn't exist. That doesn't exist. So, you know, look, I—the only thing I've been relatively good at in my long career in the Senate is figuring out when to move and when not to move. You've got to have the votes.

Executive Action on Gun Safety Regulation

Q. [Inaudible]—gun control?

Q. Can we expect any gun control Executive orders?

The President. Pardon me?

Q. Can we expect any gun control Executive orders soon?

The President. Well, we're looking at that right now. We're looking at what kind of authority I have relative to imported weapons, as well as whether or not I have any authority to—these new weapons that are being made by 3-D equipment that aren't registered as guns at all, there may be some latitude there as well.

Q. [Inaudible]

The President. Thank you all very much. Thank you.

Blocked Shipping Lanes in the Suez Canal, Egypt

Q. On the Suez Canal, sir. On the Suez Canal, what offer has the DOD, has the Pentagon made to help Egypt? Can you say? What all can the U.S. do to assist?

The President. We have equipment and capacity that most countries don't have, and we're seeing what we can do—what help we can be.

Q. Thank you.

The President. Thank you.

NOTE: The President spoke in the afternoon upon arrival at the New Castle Airport.

Joseph R. Biden, Remarks in an Exchange With Reporters in New Castle, Delaware Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/348972

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