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Remarks: Joe Biden Congratulates the Las Vegas Aces on Their 2023 WNBA Championship - May 9, 2024

  • Joe Biden
    Person
  • Nikki Fargas
    Person
  • Unidentified
    Person
  • Question
    Person
  • Kamala Harris
    Person
Unknown

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:00:00-00:00:11 (12 sec)
A'ja, when she was saying you're one of the best, she was including men in that [inaudible]. [Laughter] 1

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:00:11-00:00:19 (8 sec)
Folks, welcome to the White House the 2023 WNBA champions, the Las Vegas Aces. 2

Joe Biden

Unknown
00:00:19-00:00:25 (6 sec)
Kamala and your very own MVP, Doug -- [laughter] -- the Second Gentleman. [Laughs] 3

Joe Biden

Positive
00:00:25-00:00:31 (6 sec)
And thanks to the members of Congress that are here. 4

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:00:31-00:00:36 (5 sec)
A special thanks to the members of the administration, including Acting Labor Secretary Julie Su. [Applause] 5

Joe Biden

Slightly Negative
00:00:36-00:00:42 (6 sec)
And above all -- by the way, she was a center. No, I'm only -- [laughter] -- 6

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:00:42-00:00:55 (12 sec)
Thank you all for the -- and the entire Aces organization, especially coaches and players: the first WNBA team in over 20 years to win a title back-to-back. [Applause] 7

Joe Biden

Neutral
00:00:55-00:01:03 (8 sec)
I kind of like that back-to-back stuff. [Laughter and applause] 8

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:01:03-00:01:34 (31 sec)
Ever since you moved to Las Vegas in 2018, you've embodied excellence: five straight playoff appearances, three Final appearances in four years. And this year, the best regular-season record in league history, including the most wins in a season; eight and one in the postseason before winning the title again. 9

Unidentified

Unknown
00:01:34-00:01:35 (1 sec)
Eight and one. 10

Joe Biden

Unknown
00:01:35-00:01:39 (4 sec)
And along the way, you led -- you led -- 11

Unidentified

Unknown
00:01:39-00:01:39 ( sec)
Eight and one. [Laughter] 12

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:01:39-00:02:15 (36 sec)
-- by giants of the game: Hall of Fame Coach Becky Hammon. Becky, where -- [applause] -- the deepest bench in the league. Starters led by four All Stars: Chelsea Gray -- [applause] -- Jackie Young -- [applause] -- Kelsey Plum -- [applause] -- and a woman new to the limelight -- [laughter] -- A'ja Wilson, the pride of Columbia, South Carolina. [Applause] 13

Joe Biden

Unknown
00:02:15-00:02:28 (13 sec)
Jim Clyburn here? Because he's bragging about you a lot. [Laughter] 14

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:02:28-00:02:54 (26 sec)
And while she couldn't be here, I want to acknowledge someone who will be considered one of the greatest all-time [DEL: coaches :DEL] [players], Candace Parker. [Applause] She played 16 seasons in the league, two Olympic Gold Medals, two regular season MVPs, and a Final MVP. And look -- and going out on top of the world with her third ring, she announced her retirement from the game. 15

Joe Biden

Slightly Positive
00:02:54-00:03:07 (13 sec)
But I want to thank her for an incredible career, but we know she's got a whole world in front of her -- a whole world. [Applause] 16

Joe Biden

Unknown
00:03:07-00:03:18 (11 sec)
It's been a banner year for women's basketball -- more watching y'all than anybody else. [Laughter] The most-watched women's college game ever. 17

Joe Biden

Neutral
00:03:18-00:03:26 (9 sec)
It matters to girls and women, finally seeing themselves represented, and it matters to all of America. 18

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:03:26-00:03:51 (25 sec)
That's why, as a nation, we need to support women's sports by showing -- [applause] -- by showing up in person, watching on TV with more sponsorships and programming, and helping grow the business of women's sports and keep -- that keep inspiring -- you keep inspiring the entire nation. And that's not hyperbole. You really do. Think of what this year has been. 19

Joe Biden

Unknown
00:03:51-00:04:10 (19 sec)
Let me close with this. This year, we hosted a Black History Month celebration in this very room. I was introduced by a student named Nijel who just graduated from UNLV. He spoke about how he was the son of a Las Vegas firefighter who stood on the shoulders of generations of Black firefighters that came before him. 20

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:04:10-00:04:31 (21 sec)
He spoke about how they became a foster family and how he started a nonprofit to provide clothes for foster children who had very little on their own. In trying to reach more foster kids, he reached out to his entire community to help, and no surprise, the Las Vegas Aces stepped up and answered the call. God love you. 21

Joe Biden

Unknown
00:04:31-00:04:48 (16 sec)
And he- -- and he's here. Where -- where are you? Where is he? 22

Kamala Harris

Unknown
00:04:48-00:04:48 ( sec)
There he is. 23

Joe Biden

Unknown
00:04:48-00:04:49 (1 sec)
There you are. Stand up. [Applause] 24

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:04:49-00:04:57 (8 sec)
He's here today, and his nonprofit is just one of many ways the Las Vegas Aces are more than just a team. They represent a belief in excellence, in team work, in community. 25

Joe Biden

Unknown
00:04:57-00:05:04 (8 sec)
And the Las Vegas Aces understand that America -- in America, we make history. We don't erase history; we make it. 26

Kamala Harris

Unknown
00:05:04-00:05:05 (1 sec)
That's right. 27

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:05:05-00:05:12 (7 sec)
I want to thank you -- [applause] -- for showing that the future of women's sports is brighter than the Vegas lights. 28

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:05:12-00:05:14 (1 sec)
Congratulations, again. 29

Joe Biden

Unknown
00:05:14-00:05:16 (3 sec)
Now I'm going to turn this over to Nikki, the team president. 30

Joe Biden

Somewhat Positive
00:05:16-00:05:18 (1 sec)
Madam President, please come forward. [Applause] 31

Nikki Fargas

Very Positive
00:05:18-00:05:45 (28 sec)
Mr. President, Madam Vice President, thank you so much for once again inviting the Las Vegas Aces, two-time WNBA World Champions, back to the White House. [Applause] 32

Nikki Fargas

Slightly Positive
00:05:45-00:06:09 (23 sec)
Although 1992 is ancient history for many of these young ladies standing behind me -- [laughter] -- I don't even know if some of them were born -- I'm certain, Mr. President, that you remember that year's election season quite vividly. There were only two women in the Senate at the time: Nancy Kassebaum and Barbara Mikulski. 33

Nikki Fargas

Very Positive
00:06:09-00:06:17 (9 sec)
But in 1992, a then-record four women won seats, including the first Black woman ever elected, Carol Moseley Braun. [Applause] 34

Nikki Fargas

Negative
00:06:17-00:06:42 (24 sec)
Following the swearing in of that class, headline writers dubbed 1992 the "Year of the Woman." Senator Mikulski was a bit insulted, noting that "Calling 1992 the 'Year of the Woman' makes it sound like the 'Year of the Caribou' or the 'Year of the Asparagus.'" She added, "We're not a fad, a fancy, or a year." 35

Nikki Fargas

Positive
00:06:42-00:06:59 (18 sec)
Four years later, the WNBA announced, "We Got Next." At that time, many thought the league was just a fad, a fancy. But visionaries like David Stern and Val Ackerman, alongside some of the best athletes in the world, set above and about to provide the doubters wrong. 36

Nikki Fargas

Leans Positive
00:06:59-00:07:07 (7 sec)
Altering the landscape of professional sports and of American politics had both proven equally challenging. And change is slow. 37

Nikki Fargas

Unknown
00:07:07-00:07:10 (3 sec)
But three decades later, that change is real. 38

Nikki Fargas

Slightly Positive
00:07:10-00:07:29 (18 sec)
Today, the Senate counts 25 women among its numbers. [Applause] And the second-most powerful person in the world is not just a woman but a woman of color. [Applause] 39

Nikki Fargas

Very Positive
00:07:29-00:07:49 (21 sec)
The WNBA has likewise seen dramatic growth in ticket sales, merchandising, and TV ratings, while forward-thinking corporate partners begin to understand the value in investing in women. 40

Nikki Fargas

Positive
00:07:49-00:07:58 (9 sec)
We are not a fad. We are not a fancy. We are not a year. We are the WNBA, 28 years strong and counting. 41

Nikki Fargas

Somewhat Positive
00:07:58-00:08:05 (6 sec)
Mr. President, Madam Vice President, thank you again for so graciously welcoming us to our nation's capital. 42

Nikki Fargas

Somewhat Positive
00:08:05-00:08:37 (32 sec)
We would like to add to your athletics wardrobe -- [laughter] -- as two-time MVP A'ja Wilson and point guard Chelsea Gray present you with Aces jerseys just in time for the WNBA season's opener on May 14th. [Applause] 43

Nikki Fargas

Unknown
00:08:37-00:08:37 ( sec)
[The President and Vice President are presented with Las Vegas Aces jerseys] 44

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:08:37-00:08:43 (6 sec)
Tell her to put me in, Coach. I'm ready to play. [Laughter and applause] 45

Joe Biden

Very Positive
00:08:43-00:08:48 (5 sec)
Thank you. Thank you. 46

Kamala Harris

Very Positive
00:08:48-00:08:50 (1 sec)
Congratulations. 47

Unidentified

Somewhat Positive
00:08:50-00:08:50 ( sec)
Thank you. 48

Unidentified

Somewhat Positive
00:08:50-00:08:52 (2 sec)
Thank you for having us. [Applause] 49

Question

Unknown
00:08:52-00:08:55 (3 sec)
Mr. President, when will you debate President Trump? When? 50

Joe Biden

Unknown
00:08:55-00:09:04 (9 sec)
Set it up. 51