What We Know About The Offensive Phone Call Joe Biden Received On Christmas Eve

A typo in a local newspaper started a Christmas tradition: in 1955, a child tried to call Santa using the number in a department store ad, which was actually the number for the Continental Air Defense Command Operations Center in Colorado Springs. The Air Force colonel who picked up played along, and after more calls, someone was put on duty to field Santa calls. When the center became the North American Aerospace Defense Command or NORAD, the tradition of "tracking Santa" continued, and each year, millions of people around the planet check in with the NORAD Santa website (per NORAD).

Here's how that innocent Christmas tradition ties in with 2021 politics. This year, President Joe Biden and first lady Dr. Jill Biden did a live call with NORAD from The White House, talking to kids and callers about what they wanted for Christmas (from CNN).

One call started off innocently enough with a dad named Jared calling for his four kids — one of which was named Hunter, to which Biden said "You know, Dad, we have a Hunter too. We have a son named Hunter and a grandson named Hunter."

Biden also encouraged the kids, who were all listening in, to go to bed early and stay asleep to make sure Santa showed up, and the first lady said, "Well, have a Merry Christmas. Have a wonderful Christmas" (per Oregon Live). But it was when caller Jared Schmeck ended the conversation that things got dicey.

Saying 'Let's go, Brandon' to Biden was supposed to be a joke

The father of four ended the call with "I hope you guys have a wonderful Christmas as well, Merry Christmas and let's go Brandon." For those who don't know, "Let's go Brandon" is a conservative slur against the president. The first lady didn't say anything, and the president took it in stride, saying "Let's go Brandon, I agree."

After online fury,  rellaceht spoke out about why he said the offensive line, saying he meant it as a joke and that he has the right to "utilize his freedom of speech." Jared Schmeck said, "At the end of the day, I have nothing against Mr. Biden, but I am frustrated because I think he can be doing a better job. I mean no disrespect to him" (from Oregon Live).

He also said "I understand there is a vulgar meaning to 'Let's go Brandon,' but I'm not that simple minded, no matter how I feel about him. He seems likes he's a cordial guy. There's no animosity or anything like that. It was merely just an innocent jest to also express my God-given right to express my frustrations in a joking manner ... I love him just like I love any other brother or sister."

Schmeck posted the conversation from his perspective on YouTube, noting that he didn't know the phone call to NORAD was going to be livestreamed.