During the Democratic presidential debate Thursday night, viewers at home were perplexed by former Vice President Joe Biden, who appeared to be struggling to answer a question on gun control, prompting viral claims that his teeth were falling out.
Biden moved his mouth uncomfortably after ABC News host David Muir asked why voters should give the 76-year-old a second chance to pass gun control proposals after none were signed into law while he was in office following the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.
Biden answered the question, saying that he was the only candidate to ever "beat the NRA," but viewers at home were more perplexed by what was going on with his mouth.
Biden sounds like he has a mouth full of new teeth. #DemDebate— Jackée Harry (@JackeeHarry) September 13, 2019
It's unclear if the presidential hopeful was chewing gum that got stuck in the wrong place or if he suffered some other oral problem. Others wondered if he had a "new set of teeth" that he was struggling to get used to. He's known for his dazzling white teeth, which have had their own website for more than a decade, and appears to have undergone cosmetic procedures in recent decades, including hair plugs, Botox injections and veneers.
It's not Biden's first mishap during a public appearance. During the CNN climate change town hall last week, his left eye filled with blood, with social media users speculating online that he suffered a broken blood vessel, also known as a subconjuctival hemorrhage — which can be caused by high blood pressure, bleeding disorders, blood thinners, or even excessive straining.
Biden has a long history of health issues, including multiple aneurysms, a benign polyp and a cholecystectomy. He suffers from asthma and allergies and reportedly takes a prescription drug to lower his cholesterol, according to the Washington Examiner. He has also reportedly taken medication for an enlarged prostate. He hasn't disclosed his medical history since 2008, when doctors found he had an irregular heartbeat.
Those close to Biden maintain that he is "a picture of health," according to a former aide who spoke to the Washington Examiner in April. Biden would be the oldest president ever to be inaugurated should he win the 2020 presidential election.