Obama Surprises An Emotional Joe Biden With The Presidential Medal Of Freedom With Distinction

On Thursday, President Obama surprised his vice president, Joe Biden, with a special send-off at the White House. The moment was made all the more poignant as Obama announced he was awarding Biden with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and he even added a special distinction for extra measure. You may want to get the tissues ready.

The close friendship and working relationship between Obama and Biden have been highlights of their administration, but it all came to a head on Thursday. Obama started the event by delivering a deluge of compliments to Biden, who he called a brother and “the best VP America has ever had.” He even joked, “This also gives the Internet one last chance to talk about our bromance.”

The real heart-string pulling moment arrived when Obama announced the Medal of Freedom honor. Biden was rightfully moved and did a quick about-face to grab a tissue to mop up the tears. But that didn’t appear to quell the emotion, as Biden was still overcome with joy as Obama placed the medal around Biden’s neck. Here’s a clip of that moment.

After Biden took a few moments to collect himself, he thanked Obama for the honor. The choked-up VN expressed his gratitude for the award, but more importantly, he talked glowingly about the relationship that he and Obama cultivated the past eight years. Old Joe told Obama, “I’m indebted to you, I’m indebted to your friendship, I’m indebted to your family.” Biden closed out his time by telling Obama he will always have his back: “Mr. President, you know as long as there’s breath in me, I’ll be there for you.”