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November 19, 2021

President Biden will transfer power to Vice President Kamala Harris Friday morning for the "brief period of time" when he is under anesthesia for a "routine" colonoscopy at Walter Reed Medical Center, the White House said Friday.

The president traveled to Bethesda, Maryland, for a physical exam, one day before his 79th birthday. Biden arrived at 8:51 a.m. ET and waved to reporters who were traveling with him. White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Biden will also undergo a colonoscopy while there.

"As was the case when President George W. Bush had the same procedure in 2002 and 2007, and following the process set out in the Constitution, President Biden will transfer power to the Vice President for the brief period of time when he is under anesthesia," Psaki said. "The Vice President will work from her office in the West Wing during this time." 

Psaki added that the White House will publicly release a written summary of Biden's physical later Friday afternoon. Harris was spotted arriving at the White House early Friday morning. 

A Fox News Poll released Thursday showed that 53% of registered voters believe Biden's age is interfering with his job. When Psaki was asked in October about when Biden would get a physical exam, she promised, "When he gets physical, we will make all of that information available." In May, Psaki was asked about Biden's health. "I can tell you, having traveled with him a fair amount, sometimes he’s hard to keep up with," Psaki, 42, insisted. Biden is the oldest man to serve as president.