First Feline takes up residence in Biden White House

Published: 08:24 PM, 28 Jan, 2022
First Feline takes up residence in Biden White House
Caption: First Feline takes up residence in Biden White House.
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The dog-loving Bidens have finally fulfilled a key White House pledge -- they got a cat.

The political pussycat is a short-haired tabby named Willow, a spokesman for Jill Biden said Friday. Pictures posted by the first lady on Twitter showed the gray-and-white-striped pet prowling in the red-carpeted splendor of the presidential residence.

It was the kind of soft, even cuddly Friday news the White House might need in these days of tension with Russia, soaring inflation and a stubborn, if receding, Covid-19 pandemic.

"We're waiting for a bad news day," Press Secretary Jen Psaki joked back in June about going through with the long-expected cat plan. "If you see a tail wagging coming out of the briefing room, you'll know something bad is about to happen."

Willow brings serious political chops: she's a farm cat from Pennsylvania -- ground zero in tight presidential elections -- and was first encountered in 2020 when she jumped onto a stage where the future first lady was campaigning.

"Willow made quite an impression on Dr Biden," Michael LaRosa, the first lady's press secretary, said.

"Seeing their immediate bond, the owner of the farm knew that Willow belonged with Dr Biden."

LaRosa said, "Willow is settling into the White House with her favorite toys, treats, and plenty of room to smell and explore."

There was no answer to questions on Willow's ability to bridge the bipartisan divide with dogs, but Washington probably won't have to wait long to find out: the Bidens got a new German Shepherd puppy, Commander, just before Christmas.


Agence France-Presse is an international news agency.