Biden raises possibility of 2020 presidential bid
Vice President Biden on Monday raised the possibility of a presidential bid in 2020.
“I am going to run in 2020,” Biden told a group of reporters in the Capitol when asked about his political future. “What the hell man, anyway.”
Also, best part of this exchange: “(pause for about 4 seconds)”
— Hallie Jackson (@HallieJackson) December 5, 2016
Asked if he was kidding about running, the 74-year-old paused before saying he is “not committing not to run.”
“I am not committed to anything,” he added. “I learned a long time ago, fate has a strange way of intervening.”
It would be surprising if Biden decided to continue his decadeslong political career, which many assumed would end once President Obama and he leave the White House next month.
Biden will be 78 in 2020 and would by far be the oldest person ever to win a major-party presidential nomination if he became the Democrats’ standard-bearer.
After months of toying with a presidential run this cycle, Biden announced last October that he would not mount a bid. He said he ran out of time “necessary to mount a winning campaign” while mourning the loss of his son, Beau, to cancer.
He instead spent 2016 campaigning for Hillary Clinton.
Biden spoke publicly before the election about his post-White House plans, which include working on his cancer moonshot initiative, a possible policy project with a major university and writing a book.
The vice president was at the Capitol on Monday afternoon to preside over the Senate as it held a vote on legislation funding the cancer initiative, a portion of which the chamber named after Beau.
Biden received an emotional tribute from his colleagues on the Senate floor. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said the bill was a “testament to [Biden’s] tremendous effort” to fight cancer.
He would have to put that work aside if he decided to launch a presidential bid in four years.
But since Clinton lost, the future of the Democratic Party is up for grabs. Some party officials have wondered if a candidate like Biden or Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), who ran a competitive primary campaign against Clinton, would have fared better against President-elect Donald Trump.
The vice president has long had his eye on the Oval Office. He ran for president in 1988 and again in 2008, losing both times in his party’s primary.
In the past few months, he has repeatedly refused to rule out a future run for office. He told CNN in October his decision not to run in 2016 was solely because of his son’s death.
“I didn’t run for one simple overarching reason. My son was dying and he died,” Biden said. “I didn’t not run because Hillary’s running. I didn’t run because my son’s not here.”
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