Joe Biden reads carefully from teleprompters during speech at NATO summit in Washington DC: Watch

Joe Biden was seen carefully reading from teleprompters in a speech kicking off NATO’s annual summit on Tuesday, July 9, in Washington DC. The president eventually presented the alliance’s secretary-general Jens Stoltenberg with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Joe Biden reads carefully from teleprompters during speech at NATO summit in Washington DC (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)(AP)

Biden, 81, spoke with very few small verbal stumbles. At one point, he struggled slightly to pronounce “Ukraine.”

Joe Biden’s speech

“[Russian President Vladimir] Putin’s war of aggression against Ukraine continues and Putin wants nothing less than Ukraine’s total subjugation and to end Ukraine’s democracy, to destroy Urains, Urains, Ukraine’s culture, and to wipe Ukraine off the map,” Biden said.

“We know Putin won’t stop in Ukraine, but make no mistake, Ukraine can and will stop Putin,” he added.

Just minutes before Biden spoke, Rep. Mikie Sherrill (D-NJ) joined other House Democrats to demand that the president’s campaign end as there are concerns about his mental acuity, especially after his disastrous performance in the presidential debate.

“The American people know all the progress we’ve made in the past 75 years has happened behind the shield of NATO,” Biden said. “The American people understand what would happen if there was no NATO: another war in Europe, American troops fighting and dying, dictators spreading chaos, economic collapse, catastrophe … As President Reagan put it, and I quote ‘If our fellow democracies are not secure, we cannot be secure.’”

Biden ended his speech at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium by calling Stoltenberg to the stage and presenting him with the honour. Back in 1949, the same venue hosted the signing of the North Atlantic Treaty.

“Today, NATO is stronger, smarter and more energized than when you began,” Biden said. “And a billion people across Europe and North America, indeed the whole world, will reap the rewards of your labor for years to come in the form of security, opportunity and greater freedom.”

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