Joseph Biden Jr. (born November 20, 1942) is the 46th President of the United States. He was also the 47th Vice President of the United States, under Barack Obama (from 2009 to 2017).
Joe Biden was born in Scranton, Pennsylvania, though his family moved to Delaware when he was 10. In the 1960s he attended the University of Delaware and Syracuse University, receiving a law degree from the latter. In 1966 he married Neilia Hunter, and they went on to have three children.
In The Senate
Joe Biden was ambitious in politics from the start. A Democrat, he became a Senator from Delaware when he was only 29, in 1972. Tragically, only a month after this election, a car accident killed his wife and daughter, and seriously injured both of his sons. Biden considered stopping his career, but ultimately decided to join the Senate and commute to DC from home in order to spend time with his sons. He remarried in 1977, to Jill Jacobs, and they have one daughter.
Over the years, Biden won seven terms in the Senate, making him Delaware’s longest-serving senator. While Senator he chaired the Foreign Relations Committee and the Committee on the Judiciary, as well as the International Narcotics Control Caucus. He was involved in the debates over the First Gulf War and the Iraq War, and he helped to expand NATO after the fall of the Soviet Union.
Biden also tried for the presidency—multiple times! He was in the 1988 Democratic primary and ran a campaign again in 2008, but he didn’t gain much steam either time. However, 2008 was notable for him: he got on the presidential ticket as Obama’s Vice President, and the two won the 2008 election. Interestingly, Biden had also been re-elected to the Senate, so he had to resign from being Senator so that he could be Vice President.
The Obama-Biden administration won a second term in 2012. So Biden was the Vice President of the United States from 2009 to 2017. He was an important advisor who helped mold policy changes in Iraq and aided the passage of the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty. He also influenced domestic US budget and tax changes. Biden received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from Obama in 2017.
Unfortunately, tragedy struck again in 2015 when Biden’s son Beau died (at the age of 46). This is cited as a main reason why Joe Biden didn’t run for President in the 2016 election.
Road to the White House
In 2019 Biden began his campaign for the 2020 Presidential election. He’d been an extremely vocal critic of incumbent Republican President Donald Trump. Biden’s policies were more centrist than many of his Democrat colleagues, and he won the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination. He selected Senator Kamala Harris as his running mate. The 2020 race was between Biden-Harris and the Republican ticket of [President Trump]((/history/us/pres/trump/index.shtml) and Vice-President Pence.
The 2020 Presidential election is notable for taking place during the coronavirus pandemic. Despite the pandemic, a record-breaking number of Americans voted! Biden won the election, with the Democratic ticket getting a majority of the Electoral College. Biden also won the popular vote, getting the most votes that any US Presidential candidate has ever gotten (Trump got the second-most votes that any candidate has ever received).
Biden was inaugurated on January 20, 2021 as the 46th President of the United States, becoming the oldest President ever elected and only the second Catholic President (the first was John F. Kennedy).
Biden’s Vice President, Kamala Harris, is the first woman, first black, and first Asian-American to hold that position.