In June, Vice President Joe Biden lost his son, Beau, to brain cancer. Beau’s funeral was attended by dignitaries, and President Obama delivered a moving eulogy to his friend. As life would have it, the race to the White House did not pause, and people began to question why Joe hadn’t declared his intentions to run for the Oval Office. While speaking to Stephen Colbert in September, Biden grew emotional when asked about his prospective bid, but people held out hope. Would a sitting vice president actually decline to take the next step?
Biden was fully expected to make a serious bid for office. CNN even left a podium open at the recent Democratic debate in case Biden made a last-minute decision, although Colbert called the situation accurately. Only a few weeks ago, the press was on high alert for an “imminent” announcement, but Biden announced last Tuesday that he would not run. On Sunday evening, Biden (along with his wife, Dr. Jill Biden) sat down with 60 Minutes to explain his decision. Norah O’Donnell posed the question of whether it was a question of Biden thinking that he “couldn’t win” or “didn’t want to run”:
“Couldn’t win. I’ll be very blunt, if I thought we could’ve put together the campaign that our supporters deserve and our contributors deserved I’ll — I would have gone ahead and done it.”
O’Donnell pressed Biden over why he waited so long to make a decision, and Biden delivered a candid response:
“Because it took that long for us to decide as a family. Look, dealing with the loss of Beau, any parent listening who’s lost a child, knows that you can’t — it doesn’t follow schedules of primaries and caucuses and contributors and the like. It just — you — and everybody grieves at a different pace.”
Biden also addressed rumors that Beau had spoken from his death bed with a “sort of Hollywood moment” and request that his father enter the race. Biden said “nothing like that ever, ever happened,” but that Beau always thought his father could eventually capture the presidency. Perhaps that moment will happen one day, but it shall wait until the time is right for the Biden family.
(Via CBS News)