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Republican senator gets Laken Riley’s name wrong in Fox News segment calling out Biden for same thing

Republican Senator John Barrasso had an embarrassing moment over the weekend when he mispronounced Laken Riley’s name during a Fox News segment calling out President Joe Biden for the exact same thing.

“Joe Biden apologised for the murder of Lincoln – I’m sorry, of Laken Riley,” Mr Barrasso said on the show.

Perhaps poorly timed, host Maria Bartiromo instantly responded: “I know Laken Riley’s family was outraged because President Biden got her name wrong.”

Mr Biden came under fire from some Republicans when he mispronounced the first name of murdered nursing student, Laken Riley, during his State of the Union speech earlier this month, calling her “Lincoln”.

The White House’s official transcript of the speech said that Mr Biden mispronounced her name as “Lanken” during the speech.

Allyson Phillips, Ms Riley’s mother, slammed Mr Biden for the blunder, labelling him “pathetic”.

“Biden does not even KNOW my child’s name – it’s pathetic,” Ms Phillips said. “If you are going to say her name (even when forced to do so) at least say the right name.”

Republican Senator John Barrasso had an embarrassing moment over the weekend when he mispronounced Laken Riley’s name wrong during a Fox News segment (Fox News)
Republican Senator John Barrasso had an embarrassing moment over the weekend when he mispronounced Laken Riley’s name wrong during a Fox News segment (Fox News)

Laken Riley was killed in February after going for a morning run on the University of Georgia’s intramural fields.

Her roommate raised the alarm when she failed to return, prompting a search.

Riley’s body was found minutes later by authorities.

A preliminary autopsy found that she had died of blunt force trauma to the head after her killer allegedly used an object to strike her, “disfiguring her skull,” before “dragging” her to a “secluded area”. Her death was ruled a homicide.

Jose Antonio Ibarra, a 26-year-old migrant from Venezuela, was arrested for her murder.

Riley’s death has sparked intense debate amongst Democrats and Republicans after it was revealed that the suspect is not a US citizen.

Republicans have argued that Mr Biden’s immigration policies are responsible for her death, claiming he has not done enough to prevent migrants from illegally entering the US across the southern border.

However, Senate Republicans blocked a bipartisan border package last month – something that would have helped to reduce the numbers of illegal border crossings – in a move seen to derail Mr Biden’s successes at the request of his GOP challenger Donald Trump.

Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene also challenged Mr Biden to “Say Her Name” during his State of the Union speech.

Donning a “Say Her Name” t-shirt and a “Make America Great Again” cap, Ms Greene heckled the president during his speech.

Mr Biden responded to Ms Greene’s heckles, saying: “Laken Riley, an innocent young woman who was killed by an illegal. That’s right. But how many thousands of people being killed by legals?

“To her parents, I say, my heart goes out to you, having lost children myself. I understand.”

Laken Riley (Supplied)
Laken Riley (Supplied)

Following the speech, Ms Greene wrote: “Joe Biden’s policies killed Laken Riley. He finally tried to say her name, but couldn’t even say it correctly. It’s an absolute disgrace.”

Mr Trump meanwhile has used Mr Ibarra’s status to bolster his anti-migrant agenda.

“Crooked Joe Biden’s Border INVASION is destroying our country and killing our citizens!” Mr Trump wrote on Truth Social.

He added that Mr Ibarra was a “monster” who “illegally entered our Country in 2022…and then was released AGAIN by Radical Democrats in New York after injuring a CHILD!!”