Joe Biden has one of the most inspirational journeys to the White House of any president in recent years. Since the inauguration, we have heard lots about Joe and his plans in office, but we haven’t heard much about his journey to the White House. Maybe you are familiar with bits and pieces, but let’s take a moment to reflect on our president’s journey in politics.
Biden was born in Scranton, PA. Scranton is a small town. He moved at the age of 10 to Delaware, where he still lives to this day. As a child and into much his adult life, Biden struggled with a speech impediment that has been used repeatedly used against him in politics. He attended the University of Delaware where he obtained a bachelor’s degree in history and political science with a minor in English. Joe played college football his freshman year and graduated in 1961. He then went on to earn his law degree at Syracuse University. He graduated from law school in 1968. Two years after graduating law school, Biden ran for the Senate in Delaware. Joe was up against an incumbent Republican, but managed to win and become the sixth youngest senator ever elected to the US Senate. Joe Biden married Neilia Hunter Biden in 1966. By the time of Biden’s election, they had three young children together: Beau, Hunter, and Naomi. A few short weeks after Biden had been elected, tragedy shook his world.
In 1972, Joe’s wife and three kids were in a car accident. Neilia and Naomi tragically lost their lives. Naomi was only 13 months old at the time of her passing. Beau and Hunter were injured but survived. Joe contemplated giving up his newly won Senate seat that he had worked so hard to win due to the timing of things but ultimately did not. He took his oath of office in the hospital where Beau and Hunter were still being treated. Upon delivering his oath, he added a vow that if his role as a senator ever affected his ability to be a good father, he would give up his seat.
As a senator, Joe arranged his schedule in order to allow him to be present for his two sons. This included taking an hour and a half train right back to Wilmington every night to put his kids to bed. He never missed a beat in caring for his children as a single parent while holding his Senate seat. Three years after the accident, Joe met a young college girl who was nine years younger than him. That girl was Jill. The pair dated and Jill helped to care for his children. Jill adored Joe and his kids. However, when the question of marriage was brought to the table, she was relecuent as she had just recently ended her first marriage. With much persistence, the pair married in 1977 and had a daughter of their own, Ashley, in 1981.
As a senator, Joe has been notorious for always reaching across the aisle in order to come to a greater agreement - even on controversial issues of the time regarding segregation. Joe’s efforts to collaborate left him being scrutinized by his own party for being willing to work with segregationists. In 1987, Joe decided to run in the 1988 presidential election. But, due to a plagiarism incident in college that had recently come into public light, he dropped out of the election early on. Early in 1988 Joe suffered a brain aneurysm that required a life-saving operation and required him to be absent from the Senate for seven months. Biden won re-election to the Senate 6 more times, spending 36 years on the Senate floor.
In 2008, Biden attempted to run for president again. His campaign failed to grasp voters' attention, leading him to drop out after the Iowa caucus. Joe ran against Barack Obama, who ended up taking the world by storm and winning the election in 2008. Obama then chose Biden to be his running mate, which Biden agreed to. After Obama’s second term in office, questions began circulating about Biden running in the 2016 election. But, unfortunately personal tragedy struck again for Joe Biden. In 2015, Biden lost his son Beau Biden to brain cancer. Beau had served as the attorney general of Delaware. Following these events, Biden announced he would not be running in the 2016 election.
After leaving office as VP, Biden took time to write a memoir and give speeches across the country. When the 2020 presidential campaign came around, Biden demonstrated no immediate desire to run for president. But, in late April of 2019, Biden announced his campaign for president. However, he did not perform well in the early primaries as Democratic voters were not intrigued by his moderate leaning policies. Later on in the primaries, Biden recieved a wave of support that wound up in him being selected as the nominee of the Democratic party for the 2020 election.
2020 brought a year of many unprecedented events, the election included. Four days after Election Day, it was announced that Joe Biden would serve as the 46th president of the United States.
Joe Biden’s personal and political journey has been one like no other. The trials and tribulations his life has thrown at him have formed into someone who has deeply rooted values and respect for his country. So now, when you look at our president, remember his story. Joe Biden is so much more than an old man - his age has brought his wisdom and experiences that have prepared him to rise to the occasion and mend the political turbulence in our nation. Rest easy America, Joe Biden’s got us.