Biden botches HHS pick Becerra’s name, calls nominee ‘Secretary of Health and Education Services’

President-elect Joe Biden did not make the smoothest introduction of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary nominee Xavier Becerra during a Tuesday event unveiling Biden’s health and coronavirus team. 

On Monday, the Biden transition announced that Becerra, California’s attorney general and a former Democratic congressman, would be the president-elect’s pick to head HHS. The choice led to criticism from prominent Republicans who have pointed to Becerra’s past support for Medicare-for-all and his progressive stance on abortion.

However, Biden briefly took the focus off that controversy by botching the formal introduction of the pick.

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“For Secretary of Health and Education Services, I nominate Xavier Bacheria,” Biden said while reading from the teleprompter.

A moment later, Biden correctly pronounced Becerra’s last name. 

In October, Biden raised eyebrows for mispronouncing the first name of his running mate, now-Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, after critics previously claimed that saying her first name incorrectly was bigoted. 

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Back in September, the then-Democratic nominee bungled the order of the Democratic ticket by referring to a “Harris-Biden administration” in a campaign speech.