Clip of John Fetterman Goes Viral for What Came Out of His Mouth When He Tried to Say 'Water'


Pennsylvania voters, rejoice. Your newly elected senator is hard at work making sure you have clean drinking work.

No, not water — at least if you listen to him. In an event at a Philadelphia water treatment plant with President Joe Biden on Friday, Democratic Sen. John Fetterman — whose ability to do the job after experiencing a stroke just before the primary became an issue on the campaign trail — yet again demonstrated his unfitness for his new role by searching for the word “water” and ending up at “work” instead.

During Biden’s remarks, the president said Fetterman had “been a great partner, pal. And you’ve only been there exactly one month. But you’ve been a fighter not only for Pittsburgh but for the whole country,” according to a White House transcript.

It’s unclear whether he meant Philadelphia — you know, the Pennsylvania city the two were actually in — but that was honestly the least of everyone’s troubles at the event.

Instead, Fetterman demonstrated why Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, the state and the country don’t exactly have a man fighting with all his might for their interests. Watch the cringeworthy clip below:

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To some, the moment was disconcerting.

To others, the disconcerting matter was that Republicans were pointing out Fetterman’s deteriorated mental state at all.

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But the point wasn’t mocking Fetterman. Case in point: By now, we’ve all admitted that President Biden’s mental deterioration is a matter of legitimate concern for Americans, both now and as it pertains to the 2024 election.

In fact, of the gaffes made during Friday’s event at the Philadelphia water plant, the president’s was the one that got the most play on Twitter:

OK. That’s hardly anything on Fetterman’s strange search for — and failure to dig up — the word “water.” At a water plant.

Keep in mind, the Democrats assured Pennsylvanians that Fetterman was recovering fine from a stroke he suffered in the final days before the primary season. Then came his single debate performance against his GOP opponent, Dr. Mehmet Oz. You may remember the lowlights:

Nevertheless, Democrats and those in Fetterman’s circle continued to prop the former lieutenant governor of the Keystone State up, believing — not incorrectly — that a Democrat who couldn’t do the job he was elected for was better for them, if not Pennsylvania, than a Republican who could.

And, buttressed by a stronger-than-expected performance by Democrats, lo and behold, he was indeed elected. Not that his recovery seemed to go any smoother, as his swearing-in seemed to confirm:

And so, without releasing his medical records, and aided and abetted by a media who didn’t care all that much about them, Fetterman has waltzed into office, apparently representing a reliable Democratic vote and little else.

Was there corruption in the Pennsylvania election?

Perhaps this works in the Senate, even if it is a cynical human tragedy. It doesn’t work in the White House — and this past week, which saw Beijing reportedly send a spy balloon across the continental United States without any action until the aircraft reached the Atlantic Ocean, shows why it doesn’t.

Yet, for the same reason the Democrats propped up John Fetterman in 2022 despite his readily apparent unfitness for office, Joe Biden will be propped up in 2024. If Fetterman can serve as an object lesson to America about why this is such a bad idea, perhaps this farce will end up being worth it.

CORRECTION, Feb. 7, 2023: The headline on an earlier version of this article misspelled the name of Sen. John Fetterman.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Morristown, New Jersey
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture