Jill Biden’s office attempts to walk back Iowa WH invite as racism accusations fly
First lady Jill Biden's office on Tuesday attempted to lower the temperature after she received backlash on social media, including accusations of racism, for floating the idea of inviting the University of Iowa women’s basketball team to the White House, despite them losing to Louisiana State University (LSU) in the national championship game over the weekend.
'I know we’ll have the champions come to the White House, we always do. So, we hope LSU will come,' Biden said Monday. 'But, you know, I’m going to tell Joe I think Iowa should come, too, because they played such a good game.'
The first lady’s idea backfired immediately as thousands of quote tweets rolled in over the course of just hours.
Bishop Talbert Swan wrote, 'Jill Biden is a white woman,' and suggested the first lady's race was why she invited the Iowa women's team.
'Of course she wants the president to invite the team of predominantly white women that lost when the winning team of Black woman come to the White House,' Swan wrote. 'She wants to give white women the same privilege that Black women earned.'
'This is America,' he added.
'Jill Biden inviting Iowa to the WH has Angel Reese and Black people everywhere HEATED,' journalist Touré tweeted. 'The WH has a crisis on its hands…'
Another user slammed 'people defending Jill Biden saying ‘it was such a good game and it brought awareness.’'
'AWARENESS OF WHAT,' the user wrote. 'B----ES BEEN PLAYING BASKETBALL FOR YEARS. Jesus Christ.'
Keith Boykin, who worked for former President Bill Clinton and frequently appeared on CNN, tweeted, 'No Ma’am!' and added, 'When Black women win a national championship, they should not be forced to share the stage with the losing team.'
NFL Hall of Fame tight end Shannon Sharpe slammed the first lady on 'Skip and Shannon: Undisputed' while discussing the championship and said an invitation to the White House 'isn't a participation award,' adding, 'Winners get a trophy. That's what life is about.'
'Come on, Dr. Biden. You know better than this,' Sharpe said. 'Did you forget who helped put your husband in the White House? You gonna find out a very serious, hard lesson in ’24. [Joe] will be like a Kentucky or Duke freshman. You’ll be one-and-done.'
Other users, including progressive sitting members of Congress, also slammed the first lady for her White House invitation to Iowa.
'Very respectfully Madame First Lady, that’s not how it works,' 'Squad' Rep. Jamaal Bowman, D-N.Y., wrote on Tuesday. 'LSU won. LSU comes to the White House.'
'Iowa understands this and would most definitely respectfully decline the invitation,' Bowman continued.
The first lady’s remarks also drew a response from Rep. Julia Letlow, R-La., who gave props to LSU coach Kim Mulkey and the team and invited them to the Capitol.
'In #LA05, we’re proud of Tangipahoa Parish’s own, Coach [Mulkey], and all that [LSU’s women’s team] accomplished,' Letlow tweeted. 'Coach — if the [White House] insists on making you share the championship visit, we would be honored to celebrate your team at the Capitol!'
'DEI for the win!' Washington Free Beacon journalist Chuck Ross tweeted on Monday.
Fox News Digital reached out to the first lady’s office but received no response.
Biden’s spokesperson, Vanessa Valdivia, attempted to walk back the first lady’s comments, tweeting that she 'loved watching the NCAA women's basketball championship game alongside young student athletes and admires how far women have advanced in sports since the passing of Title IX.'
'Her comments in Colorado were intended to applaud the historic game and all women athletes,' Valdivia wrote. 'She looks forward to celebrating the LSU Tigers on their championship win at the White House.'
Under Mulkey, LSU beat Iowa on Sunday, 102-85, to take the NCAA women’s basketball national championship home to Baton Rouge for the first time in school history.
The participation trophy-esque remarks drew strong rebukes from people from all walks.
LSU star Angel Reese led the charge, quote-tweeting the ESPN write-up with three laughing emojis and two words: 'A JOKE.'
Fox News Digital's Ryan Gaydos contributed reporting.