A Los Angeles city councilman botched a recital of the Pledge of Allegiance during a virtual meeting, cringeworthy video shows.
Councilman Kevin de León, a Democrat representing the city’s 14th District, said it “would be an honor” to recite the pledge during the council’s Tuesday Zoom meeting. But his ensuing performance didn’t go as expected.
“I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America,” the councilman began before suddenly stopping, according to a 43-second clip posted on Twitter.
Seconds later, de León started again, but only managed to blurt out the sort-of-word “undervisible” and then continued from the start, again saying: “I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America.”
De Leon, whose face couldn’t be seen in the video, was then heard sighing “oh boy” along with the sound of furious typing on a keyboard.
He then continued, saying: “For which it stands, one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”
De León then apparently said “oof” at the end of his bungled performance, which got him skewered online.
California Senate President pro Tem Kevin de León botched the Pledge of Allegiance during a virtual meeting.Rich Fury/Getty Images
“Sad and pathetic,” one critic tweeted. “It should be funny but in all honesty it’s tragic and disgusting how these people that work for the government of the United States of America don’t even know the simple pledge of allegiance.”
Another commenter tweeted video of their 4-year-old girl reciting the pledge, while others took note of de Leon’s apparent recognition that he goofed big time.
“His ‘oooooof’ at the end was, umm, telling,” another tweet read.
De León, for his part, acknowledged his disjointed and stammering version of the pledge later Tuesday.
“Embarrassing, am I right?” he tweeted with a photo of Bart Simpson writing the pledge repeatedly on a chalk board.
Embarrassing, am I right? If you or someone you know got a good laugh out of my own “unique” version of the pledge of allegiance, consider donating a few $$ to https://t.co/Ig5Qrkr4i2. They’re doing amazing work in CD 14 to provide food security for undocumented immigrants. pic.twitter.com/XBpc6V2fTQ
— Kevin de Leόn (@kdeleon) January 27, 2021
De León did not return a message seeking additional comment, but a spokesman said he does in fact know the pledge.
“He just stumbled, and showed he was human,” spokesman Pete Brown told the Los Angeles Times. “We’ve all forgotten lyrics to songs we’ve sung a hundred thousand times.
The lawmaker was also having technical difficulties with his computer at the time, Brown said.
“Sadly, there’s thousands of kids in his district who are doing the pledge and they’re at risk of being homeless,” Brown continued. “He’s thinking about that.”