WBOC’s Steve Hammond Goes One on One with Vice President Joe Biden
Hammond: Thank you for your time Mr. Vice President.
Biden: Thank you for being here.
Hammond: We’re here among many reasons to talk about Judge Garland’s nomination.
Hammond: You’re frustrated with the Senate Republicans. How is this different than 1992 and what happened?
Biden: Well, in 1992, they have taken one sentence out of a long floor speech and they talk about the “Biden Rule.” The “Biden Rule” is one rule. I’ve presided over more Supreme Court justices than anybody living. Every single justice, even the ones I voted against, got a hearing. Every single justice got a vote in the committee. Every single justice went to the floor. Even though they didn’t get voted out of the committee, I insisted they go to the floor, [every] one of them. Every single justice got a vote on the floor. What the Constitution says is the president shall – not maybe – shall nominate when there is a vacancy. And the Senate should respond by advising consent. My argument to my friends is just do your job. You don’t have to vote for Garland or can vote against him. But think about it, you have not heard any serious argument against Garland. This is the guy Republicans used to love, you know. And so, any rate, I just think that the pressure’s building. The pressure’s building. I still think we have a clear shot of getting a hearing and a vote.
Hammond: Shifting gears.
Hammond: It’s been almost a year since Beau’s death and your fellow Delawareans want to know, how ya doing?
Biden: We’re doing, we’re doing fine. We’re sticking… Everybody, I can only say, I’ve done a lot of interviews but, you guys know me. Delaware knows us. The family just hung together and anybody who suffered a similar loss understands its tough but we all decided that we are going to focus on devoting our, and this sounds corny but, devoting our time and effort to what Beau would be doing were he here. You know, all the folks at the attorney.. not all, but 90 percent of the Attorney General’s office, a lot of people around the state, wore these little bracelets that say WWBD, what would Beau do. And that’s what we’re thinking on. So we’ve this foundation that’s been set up for abused children in Beau’s name and abused women, has been funded, we’re beginning to move it in a big way. There’s talk about taking it nationally. We’re focusing on the things that Beau cared about and coincidentally for me, a lot of the things he cared about are things I care about. Violence against women, taking care of kids, making sure that the criminal justice system is functioning, etc., so that lifts us up. You know there was a, Vicky Kennedy, Ted Kennedy’s widow, sent me a magnificently beautiful letter, like so many Delawareans did when Beau passed. And she included, she said, ‘I’m including a copy of a letter that Teddy kept in the top bureau drawer that when he was really down, he’d take it out and read.’ It was a letter his father, Ambassador Kennedy, sent to a very good friend who lost a beloved friend, like he had in World War II in the early 50’s and it said, ‘Dear John, It’s a terrible thing to have to deal with but the way I’ve learned to deal with it is to decide to devote the rest of my life to what would Joe be doing? What would he want me to do?’ And it really is kind of liberating, so if you excuse me to take the chase, a station more Delawareans watch, I just want to thank the people of Delaware. They have been absolutely, absolutely, incredible. And the way they have embraced Beau’s children, Beau’s family, just like they have embraced me when I was a kid when I lost Beau’s mom and Beau’s sister.
Hammond: What are you looking forward to the most when you return to Delaware?
Biden: I’m coming home and I haven’t decided precisely what I’ll be doing but I’ll still stay involved in the causes that concern me including the Moonshot for cancer, I may do something with the University of Delaware, my alma mater.
Hammond: Mine too.
Biden: And I’m really proud of it. Home base will be Wilmington but I’m anxious to come home.
Hammond: Maybe ride the train a little less?
Biden: Oh yeah. No, I think I’ll probably still. My guess is I’ll probably still have offices down here and other places but you know, you’ll get a kick out of this, when they published about two months ago that I have surpassed 1,100,000 miles in Air Force One, when I came to the train station Friday afternoon, like I’m going to this Friday to go home, because I usually take, Secret Service likes me to fly, it’s more secure, but I like to take the train. And to make a long story short I’m getting on the train and two senior conductors come up and they say ‘Hey Joe, how ya doing?’ I say, ‘Fine guys’ and he says, ‘Just read you made a million miles’ and I said, ‘Yeah’ and he said, ‘How many miles you think you rode on Amtrak?’ These guys sat down and figured out how many days I rode Amtrak and it’s 257 miles round trip, he said ‘Joe, you’ve traveled over 2,100,000 miles on Amtrack.’
Hammond: Isn’t that something?
Biden: But it’s the thing that kept me grounded coming home every night, it was a blessing.
Hammond: As your time winds down, do you feel like you’ve left it all on the field?
Biden: Well, yes I do but I think I have a lot more to leave on the field and so I’m going to still be deeply involved in foreign policy and violence against women and working on issues that concerned Beau. And the question is which floor do I use to do that, but I will continue to do that.
Hammond: Alright, I appreciate your time sir.
Biden: Thank you for coming down. I really do appreciate this, thank you.