Less than a year before her unprecedented 70 years on the throne, Queen Elizabeth II met her thirteenth occupant of the White House, President Joe Biden, and First Lady Jill Biden.
The three met at Windsor Castle on Sunday, following the conclusion of the G-7 summit attended by Joe Biden in Cornwall, England.
The president’s helicopter landed on the castle lawn shortly before 5 p.m. local time, and the Bidens climbed in a black Land Rover, the late Prince Philip’s favorite car, to join the queen on an outdoor podium for photos. Her Majesty wore a cheery pink floral ensemble with a matching hat and white gloves, the First Lady wore a light blue skirt suit and the President donned his aviator sunglasses with a navy blue suit and light blue tie .
The three of them stood together for The Star-Spangled Banner, and the Queen and First Lady remained on the dais as the President inspected the Red-uniformed Guard of Honor and bearskin cap gathered on the castle grounds. . During former President Donald Trump’s visit in 2018, Trump broke royal protocol by walking in front of Queen Elizabeth II during the inspection.
The Bidens then headed inside to have tea with the 95-year-old monarch. Leaving the dais, Biden nudged the queen. She didn’t take his arm and stepped down while she held the handrail.
The Bidens left the castle just before they had spent a full hour with the queen and boarded the helicopter for the trip back to London.
The president later told pool reporters that the queen was very kind and that he invited her to the White House. He said that the monarch reminded him of his late mother.
Last week, the president’s press secretary, Jen Psaki, told reporters: Who among us would not want to meet the queen? … They made her, of course, an elegant invitation, which she certainly accepted. She is also looking forward to seeing you with Dr. Biden.
This is the Bidens’ first trip abroad since she took office and her first meeting with the queen as president. But the White House says he participated in an audience with the queen in November 1982, when he traveled to the UK for a meeting of the British-American Parliamentary Group during his second term as US senator from Delaware.
During her reign, the queen has enjoyed a record five state dinners at the White House, more than any other monarch or head of state, according to the White House Historical Association.
The meeting with the Bidens is not a state visit; It’s a more casual courtesy call of the kind Donald Trump and former First Lady Melania Trump made when they stopped by for tea with his Majesty.
As is customary at these summits, the first lady participated in the program organized by Johnson for the G-7 spouses on Friday and Saturday. On Friday, she appeared with Kate, Duchess of Cambridge at a local school in Cornwall to highlight her joint interest in early childhood education.
On Friday night, the Bidens and other G-7 leaders attended a reception hosted by the Queen, Prince Charles and his wife, Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, and Prince William and Kate. The meeting, confirmed Thursday night by the White House, was an indication that the British crown and government see the first G-7 summit of the Biden administration as important enough to deploy top members of the royalty to mingle with visitors.
Following her meeting with the queen on Sunday, the first lady will meet with UK veterans who participated in the Walk of America, a 2018 expedition led by Walking With the Wounded to share stories of injured service members, and of the which Biden served as the patron.