Joe Biden could be the man to challenge President Donald Trump in the 2020 election, but just who is he? From his beginnings as an attorney up until his stint as vice president, Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. has had a long and storied career.
Biden’s Early Life
Joe Biden was born on November 20, 1942, in Scranton, Pennsylvania. His father, Joseph Robinette Biden Sr., was a used car salesman who also cleaned furnaces for a living. His mother was named Catherine Eugenia Finnegan, and Joe was the eldest of four siblings.
Biden’s family lived in Pennsylvania until 1955 when they moved to Mayfield, Delaware. As a child, he struggled with a severe stutter. Other kids in his school bullied him and called him names like “Dash” and “Joe Impedimenta,” but he described overcoming the problem by spending hours reciting poetry in front of a mirror. The future vice president’s mother was a source of comfort for him in the face of the bullying. He stated that she would tell him he stuttered because “you’re so bright, you can’t get the thoughts out quickly enough.”
Biden’s Political Career
In 1968, Biden graduated from law school and began working at a Delaware law firm. He joined the Democratic Party and became involved in politics. Biden first held political office in 1970, when he was elected to the New Castle County Council.
In 1972, the Democratic Party of Delaware urged Biden, who was 29 years old, to run for United States Senate. Despite his slim chances of winning, he won and became the fifth-youngest person to serve in the Senate.
He made a name for himself on the issues of crime and drug control, as well as foreign policy matters. However, Biden was involved in legislation that has become controversial over the years. In 1994, he sponsored the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, which gave harsher sentences to those who committed certain crimes. The law led to penalties that many have called excessive.
He ran as a presidential candidate in 1988 but dropped out of the race after accusations of plagiarism were made against him.
Biden’s career in the Senate started in 1973 and ended after seven terms, in 2009, when he became vice president.
Joe Biden As Vice President
After Barack Obama won the Democrat presidential nomination in 2007, he selected Biden as his running mate.
Obama was declared president in 2008. As vice president, Biden advised Obama and developed policies regarding the military conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Politically, Biden is seen as a moderate who would work to preserve the status quo (current state of things) in American society.
If he becomes the Democratic presidential nominee, Biden will have a tough fight ahead of him. Regardless of the outcome, for better or for worse, Biden has left his mark on the United States.