Conservative Twitter feeds and websites exploded with mirth Tuesday when Joe Biden appeared to fall asleep during a virtual town hall meeting with Hillary Clinton.
The livestreamed event was designed to highlight Mrs. Clinton’s endorsement of Mr. Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee.
During the event, Mr. Biden frequently cast his gaze down as if consulting notes.
But at one point, Mr. Biden closed his eyes, put his head down, and remained motionless for some 15 seconds or more, video of the event shows.
Eventually, the 77-year-old candidate appeared to be startled awake, and he jerked his head up, eyes blinking.
Mr. Biden’s campaign billed the event as a “Women’s Town Hall on Covid-19.”
Mrs. Clinton was discussing how women in the workforce deemed “essential” have been affected by the virus when the former Vice President seemed to fall asleep.
Mr. Biden’s campaign did not immediately respond to questions about whether he nodded off during the Town Hall.
The video had been viewed well over a half-million times early Tuesday evening after several Twitter accounts posted it, usually with some humorous commentary.
Joe Biden has fallen asleep listening to Hillary Clinton during his own town hall pic.twitter.com/tCfbXwezys— Caleb Hull (@CalebJHull) April 28, 2020
As much of the nation remains shut down in response to the novel coronavirus, which originated in Wuhan, China, Mr. Biden has frequently appeared on video from an office in his Delaware home. During many of his appearances, he has fumbled for words even at times where he seems to reading a script.
Those stumbles and other issues have led some to speculate the Democratic Party may seek to replace Mr. Biden, but Mrs. Clinton gave no hint of unease with his candidacy — or noticing the apparent catnap — during her enthusiastic endorsement.
Mr. Biden is not the first public figure to be caught on tape seeming to nod off.
Last month, President Trump was accused of sleepiness during a video conference with governors, and video clearly captured Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont asleep during Mr. Trump’s impeachment trial.
• James Varney can be reached at email@example.com.
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