Look who’s coming to dinner! Biden’s first White House state dinner whips up negative buzz

President Joe Biden hosted the first state dinner of his presidency on Thursday, and in addition to featuring A-list celebrities and top corporate executives, the event also featured the president’s youngest son, Hunter, and his current wife.

What made Hunter Biden’s presence particularly notable is that it was contrasted by the presence of some of the same congressional Republicans who intend to investigate his history of corrupt business practices once they retake the House in January.

Indeed, at one point during the dinner “House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy brushed off a question about whether it will be awkward attending a dinner with the president’s son,” as reported by the Daily Mail.

“I’m at dinner with my mom so I’m going to have a great time,” McCarthy replied.

That said, McCarthy’s presence at the event alongside Hunter Biden did anger some Republicans like Rep. Matt Gaetz, who’s among a group within the party who’re maneuvering to keep McCarthy out of the speakership role next month.

“Tonight Kevin McCarthy had dinner with Hunter Biden at a state dinner with Macron to rally support for more US aid to Ukraine. He should not be Speaker,” Gaetz tweeted late Thursday.

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The dinner itself also sparked outrage because of the contrast between the elite dining on lobster (reportedly at taxpayer expense) and the American people struggling to put food on their tables.

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A number of celebrities were also in attendance at the soirée. They included Stephen Colbert, Jennifer Garner, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, John Legend, and Chrissy Teigen, among other big names.

A couple of big-name corporate executives also attended, including Apple CEO Tim Cook, Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan, LVMH founder Bernard Arnault, Netflix Inc. co-CEO Ted Sarandos, and several others.

The main stars at the event were, of course, French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife.

“President Joe Biden hosted French President Emmanuel Macron at the White House on Thursday, using the very first state dinner of his presidency to shore up relations with a key American ally whose friendship has until recently been on the rocks,” according to CNN.

“Sources close to the planning described a super-sized event under a tent on the White House grounds, including not only the many Democrats clamoring for social time at the White House but also a number of officials and policy staffers interested in strengthening relations with France,” CNN reported.

At one point during the dinner, President Biden reportedly offered a toast to “the enduring alliance between France and United States,” calling the alliance “a partnership that’s marked by so many firsts.”

Biden and Macron then reportedly raised their glasses, with the U.S. president saying, “Vive la France and God bless America.”

According to presidential advisers who spoke of the dinner, the primary purpose of the event was to revitalize ties with France.

“It comes a year after the US announced a surprise US-Australia submarine partnership – upending France’s own submarine deal with Australia and infuriating French officials. The perilous relations are no small matter, given the array of major challenges facing the larger western alliance,” CNN notes.

“If you look at what’s going on in Ukraine, look at what’s going on in the Indo-Pacific and the tensions with China, France is really at the center of all those things,” John Kirby, the National Security Council’s coordinator for strategic communications, reportedly explained.

“President Macron has been the dynamic leader inside the G7 … so the President felt that this was exactly the right and the most appropriate country to start with for state visits,” he added.

Republished with permission from American Wire News Service

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