One of the perks of being President of the United States is getting to live in the White House, where you have your own private chef. But it probably doesn’t take long to realize that this is just compensation for not being able to go out to eat without inconveniencing a hell of a lot of people. Still, Barack Obama ate out a lot. Donald Trump did not, except at the restaurant at his own hotel. Joe Biden, by necessity, has had to eat at home, too, except for one time when he went out for bagels. (First Lady Jill Biden gets to go out a little more.)
But now the world is opening up again and yesterday Biden got to go out for tacos! Because it was Cinco de Mayo! And also because it was a good venue to talk about his administration’s $28.6 billion restaurant relief program. The taco joint in question, Las Gemelas in DC’s Union Market neighborhood, was the first to receive a grant through the program: $677,000.
CNN followed the president on his taco mission, noting that he mispronounced the name of the restaurant.
“I ordered lunch here, you know,” he went on, stepping to the counter and informing a group of kitchen workers that their industry had lost 2.8 million employees during the coronavirus crisis.
“Already almost 200,000 people have applied for this program. You’re the very first one in the whole nation,” Biden explained. “Do you have any questions?”
“What’s your favorite kind of taco?” someone asked, after a pause.
“I like them all,” the President said, without skipping a beat. “I don’t know what they ordered for me.”
He left with two paper bags full of tacos (al pastor, carnitas, barbacoa and tongue) and two quesadillas — though he told an inquiring reporter on his way out they were enchiladas, which don’t appear on the restaurant’s menu.
Here’s hoping that the relief program will help many more restaurants stay open so that the President can continue to have more awkward encounters with restaurant workers all across this fair nation—and many, many more tacos. Because tacos make life better.