US President Joe Biden swore into a microphone after Fox News reporter Peter Doocy asked him about inflation at a meeting with economic advisers at the White House on Monday.
Mr Biden was meeting Cabinet secretaries and members of his Competition Council when journalists began shouting questions about his approach to Russia’s military build-up around Ukraine.
Mr Biden complained that he was being asked about Russia and Ukraine instead of the Competition Council. That is when Mr Doocy of Fox News shouted a question about inflation.
“Do you think inflation is a political liability in the midterms?” Mr Doocy asked.
“No – that’s a great asset,” Mr Biden responded. “What a stupid son of a …”
Mr Doocy, appearing later on Sean Hannity’s Fox programme, said Mr Biden had called to apologise shortly after the interaction.
“Within about an hour of that exchange, he called my cellphone and he said ‘it’s nothing personal, pal’,” Mr Doocy told Mr Hannity. “And we went back and forth and we were talking about moving forward, and I made sure to tell him that I’m always going to try to ask something different than what everybody else is asking. And he said ‘you’ve got to’. And that’s a quote from the president so I’ll keep doing it.
“He cleared the air and I appreciate it. We had a nice call.”
According to reporters in the White House, the president has shown flashes of frustration and indignation with the media in recent days, as his efforts to pass his economic agenda and voting rights legislation have stalled on Capitol Hill.