Donald Trump's presidency has been the subject of countless political memes — and many of them seem to pertain to water bottles. Trump famously paused during a speech last year to take a sip of Fiji Water, but a new viral video of Mike Pence mimicking Donald Trump as they both inexplicably moved their water bottles off the table during a meeting might be even more bizarre.
On Wednesday, Trump and Pence both attended a hurricane season briefing at the Federal Emergency Management Agency's headquarters. Video footage of the meeting indicates that at one point, Trump moved his plastic water bottle from the table to the floor for no clear reason. Pence almost immediately followed suit, putting his pen down and placing his own water bottle on the floor. The president and vice president barely reacted as this took place, but the moment concluded when Trump appeared to place a napkin in his lap and Pence once again picked up his pen.
This confusing series of actions — which lasted for less than 10 seconds — has some social media users wondering if Trump and Pence were using their water bottles to secretly communicate. Others had more practical explanations, suggesting that the two men had moved their water bottles to get ready for a photo.
The latter explanation does seem feasible; many of the official photographs from the FEMA meeting show Trump and Pence without their water bottles in front of them. However, that did not stop Twitter users from speculating about why Pence instantaneously copied Trump's behavior. The FEMA meeting was also not the first time that Pence appeared to mimic Trump. Back in 2016, when they were both still on the campaign trail, NBC News' Ali Vitali shot a video of Pence meticulously copying Trump's waves and gestures:
It wasn't the first time that social media users poked fun at Trump for something water-related, either. Back in December, Trump drank some water from a small glass during a speech, and Twitter users were confused:
And just a month before that was the Fiji Water incident, when Trump found a bottle of Fiji Water underneath his podium during a speech and awkwardly drank from it while looking straight at the camera:
Social media users found the Fiji Water incident particularly amusing, especially because Trump had mocked Florida Sen. Marco Rubio for doing something similar during a speech in 2013. However, it seems as though the water bottle-shifting at the FEMA meeting may replace the Fiji Water moment as Trump's most bizarre water-related incident in the minds of Twitter users, who could not get over the fact that Pence appeared to be mirroring Trump.
Wednesday's FEMA briefing also marked the first time in nearly a month that the First Lady made a public appearance. She was admitted to the hospital over three weeks ago for a reportedly benign kidney condition, and her absence from media spaces triggered significant speculation about her whereabouts.
Although the water bottle incident went viral following the FEMA briefing, it was not the focal point of the meeting itself. The Washington Post reported that the meeting was supposed to be about hurricane preparedness. However, Trump reportedly spent much of the meeting talking about coal, aircraft carriers, Kim Jong Un, the Republican Party's funds, and how effective his political endorsements are.
According to The Hill, Trump is currently facing pressure to do more for Puerto Rico, where many people still don't have electricity access following Hurricane Maria. However, when Trump delivered remarks at the FEMA briefing, he insisted that the federal government was "marshaling every available resource for every preparation for rapid response" ahead of the 2018 hurricane season.