Former Vice President Joe Biden has admitted he regrets his decision not to run in the 2016 Presidential election. Biden made the statement while addressing an audience at Colgate University in Madison County, New York on Friday night.
Biden was at the university participating in a talk as part of a series called Kerschner Family Series Global Leaders. After speaking for nearly an hour on topics ranging from the middle class and the digital revolution, the former Vice President sat down with University president Brain W. Casey for a more intimate talk.
Right off the bat, Casey asked him how he felt about his widely publicized presidential aspirations.
“Did you ever think, what if? Any regrets that you didn’t run?”
According to members of the audience, Biden, who has been open about his desire for the presidency since winning a seat in the Senate in 1972, looked down and seemed to consider the question before answering.
Biden twice attempted to win the Democratic nomination before the 2016 race, which he told Casey, “I think I could have won.”
“I had a lot of data. I was fairly confident that if I was the Democratic Party nominee, I had a better-than-even chance of being president. But, um. I lost part of my soul, my, uh.”
Biden then recalled how the sudden cancer diagnosis and death of his son, Beau Biden, saw him decide not to run.
“The press began to think I was playing a game, but I couldn’t tell them about my boy. He wanted me to run. … My son Hunter, my daughter Ashley, my wife, all thought I should. I didn’t,” he said.
“At the end of the day, I just couldn’t do it.”
Biden explained that the toll taken on him by his son’s death meant he didn’t consider himself fit to run for president
“No man or woman should announce for president of the United States unless they can look the public in the eye and say, ‘I promise you I am giving 100 percent of my attention and dedication to this effort.'”
Biden then circled back and answered Casey’s question.
“Do I regret not being president? Yes. Do I regret not running for president, in light of everything that was going on in my life at the time? No.”
Biden then moved on to current president Trump, taking exception to policies and constant battles with the nation’s press.
“The attempt to delegitimize the press — ‘fake news’ — is the first act of any political scoundrel. We are uniquely a product of our political constitution.”
The Biden family were in the news earlier this month after reports began to surface claiming Joe Biden’s youngest son, Hunter, was in a relationship with Hallie Biden, the widow of his late brother, Beau. Page Six originally broke the news that the pair had been dating following the split of Hunter from his wife, Kathleen, five months after Beau’s death. In the article, Hunter opened up about the relationship and the comfort the pair have found in each other following Beau’s death.
“Hallie and I are incredibly lucky to have found the love and support we have for each other in such a difficult time, and that’s been obvious to the people who love us most. We’ve been so lucky to have family and friends who have supported us every step of the way.”
Joe Biden also publicly voiced the support of he and his wife, Dr. Jill Biden.
“We are all lucky that Hunter and Hallie found each other as they were putting their lives together again after such sadness. They have mine and Jill’s full and complete support and we are happy for them.”
[Featured Image by Susan Walsh/ AP Images]