Joseph Robinette "Joe" Biden, Jr. (born 20 November 1942) is an American politician serving as the 46th and current president of the United States. A member of the Democratic Party, Biden previously served as the 47th vice president from 2009 to 2017. He represented Delaware in the United States Senate from 1973 to 2009.
- (W)hen it comes to issues like abortion, amnesty, and acid, I'm about as liberal as your grandmother. I don't like the Supreme Court decision on abortion. I think it went too far. I don't think that a woman has the sole right to say what should happen to her body. I support a limited amnesty, and I don't think marijuana should be legalized.
- I think the Democratic Party could stand a liberal George Wallace—someone who's not afraid to stand up and offend people, someone who wouldn't pander but would say what the American people know in their gut is right.
- Philadelphia Enquirer (Oct. 12, 1975) Alana Goodman, Joe Biden once said Democrats needed ‘a liberal George Wallace’ (Feb. 7, 2019), Washington Examiner
- I do not buy the concept, popular in the ’60s, which said, ‘We have suppressed the black man for 300 years and the white man is now far ahead in the race for everything our society offers. In order to even the score, we must now give the black man a head start, or even hold the white man back, to even the race.’ I don't buy that. I don't feel responsible for the sins of my father and grandfather. I feel responsible for what the situation ls today, for the sins of my own generation. And I'll be damned if I feel responsible to pay for what happened 300 years ago.
- From Joe Farley (13 September 1975), An Interview With Joe Biden
- Unless we do something about this, my children are going to grow up in a jungle, the jungle being a racial jungle with tensions having built so high that it is going to explode at some point.
- Busing of schoolchildren (Jun. - Jul. 1977): hearing before the Committee on the Judiciary, United States Senate, Ninety-fifth Congress, first session, on S. 1651.
- I don't want anybody to give me credit for sharing any point of view George Wallace has. There are some people who oppose busing because they are racist, but the vast majority of the American people — the people of Delaware — oppose it for the same reason that the architect of the concept now opposes it.
Professor Coleman, an educator, first suggested the possible benefits of busing in a 1966 report. Now in 1975 Coleman says, "Guess what? I was wrong. Busing doesn't accomplish its goal." We should be concentrating on things other than busing to provide for the educational and cultural needs of the deprived segment of our population. But we've lost our bearings since the 1954 "Brown vs. School Board" desegregation case. To "desegregate" is different than to "integrate."
I got into trouble with Democratic liberals in 1972 when I refused to support a quota-system for the Democratic National Convention.
I am philosophically opposed to quota-systems; they insure mediocrity. The new integration plans being offered are really just quota-systems to assure a certain number of blacks, Chicanos, or whatever in each school. That, to me, is the most racist concept you can come up with; what it says is, "in order for your child, with curly black hair, brown eyes, and dark skin to be able to learn anything, he needs to sit next to my blond-haired, blue-eyed son." That's racist! Who the hell do we think we are, that the only way a black man or woman can learn is if they rub shoulders with my white child? The point is that if we look beyond the "old" left to the "New Left," almost all the new liberal leaders and civil rights leaders oppose busing.
- Farley, Joe (September 20-26, 1975). An Interview with Senator Joseph R. Biden. People Paper / Congressional Record.
- During the '60s, I was in fact very concerned about the civil rights movement. I was not an activist. I worked at an all-black swimming pool in the east side of Wilmington, Delaware. I was involved. I was involved in what they were thinking, what they were feeling. I was involved, but I was not out marching. I was not down in Selma, I was not anywhere else. I was a suburbanite kid who got a dose of exposure to what was happening to black Americans in my own city.
- News conference, 1987-09-17, quoted in Robert Mackey (14 February 2020), "Ahead of South Carolina Vote, Joe Biden Faces Questions Over Claims of Civil Rights Activism", The Intercept
1988 Presidential CampaignEdit
- For too long in this society, we have celebrated unrestrained individualism over common community. For too long as a nation, we have been lulled by the anthem of self-interest. For a decade, led by Ronald Reagan, self-aggrandizement has been the full-throated cry of this society: 'I've got mine, so why don't you get yours' and 'What's in it for me?'
- We must rekindle the fire of idealism in our society — for nothing suffocates the promise of America more than unbounded cynicism and indifference. We must reclaim the tradition of community in our society. Only by recognizing that we share a common obligation to one another and to our country can we ever hope to maximize our national or personal potential. We must reassert the oneness of America. America has been and must once again be the seamless web of caring and community.
- The standard of judgment is no longer results but the flickering image of seriousness, skillfully crafted to squeeze into 30 seconds on the nightly news. In this world, emotion has become suspect - the accepted style is smooth, antiseptic and passionless.
- It is an exciting and dangerous time, for this generation of Americans has the opportunity so rarely granted to others by fate and history. We literally have the chance to shape the future - to put our own stamp on the face and character of America, to bend history just a little bit.
- Let me tell you what is in the bill, and I'll let you all decide whether or not this is "weak". [...] It provides 53 death penalty offenses. Weak as can be, you know? We do everything but hang people for jaywalking in this bill. That's weak stuff.
- Regarding the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, which he wrote
- Senate, 1992-05-14, quoted in Beth Baumann (23 July 2019), "Biden Walks Back His Previous Tough On Crime Stance Now That Criminal Justice Reform Is Popular", Town Hall [better source needed]
- If Haiti, a God-awful thing to say, if Haiti just quietly sunk into the Caribbean or rose up 300 feet, it wouldn’t matter a whole lot in terms of our interest.
- When I introduced the budget freeze years ago, the liberals in my party said, "It's an awful thing you’re doing, Joe. All the programs we care about, you're freezing them— money for the blind, the disabled, education, and so on." And my argument then is the one I make now, which is the strongest, most compelling reason to be for this amendment or an amendment. And that is that "if we don't do that, all the things I care about are going to be gone."
- When I argued that we should freeze federal spending, I meant Social Security as well. I meant Medicare and Medicaid. I meant veterans' benefits. I meant every single, solitary thing in the government. And I not only tried it once, I tried it twice, I tried it a third time and I tried it a fourth time. Somebody has to tell me in here, how we're going to do this hard work without dealing with any of those sacred cows.
- Senate, 1995-01-31, quoted with video in Walker Bragman (20 May 2019), "Watch: Joe Biden Once Boasted About Wanting to Cut Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and Veterans’ Benefits", Paste Magazine
- You and I both know, and all of us here really know, and it's a thing we have to face, that the only way, the only way we're going to get rid of Saddam Hussein is we're going to end up having to start it alone — start it alone — and it's going to require guys like you in uniform to be back on foot in the desert taking this son of a — taking Saddam down. You know it and I know it.
- But I respectfully suggest, Major, that the responsibility is slightly above your pay grade, to decide whether to take the nation to war alone, or to take the nation to war part way, or to take the Nation to work half-way. That is a real tough decision.
- To Scott Ritter, in hearings about the disarmament process, before the Senate Committee on Armed Services (September 1998), quoted in Ryan Grim (7 January 2020), "Joe Biden, five years before invasion, said the only way of disarming Iraq is "taking Saddam down"", The Intercept
- Alan Cranston understood power not as a reflection of status but as a tool with a purpose.
- Meet the Press (2000-12-31)
- Saddam Hussein's pursuit of weapons of mass destruction, in my view, is one of those clear dangers. Even if the right response to his pursuit is not so crystal clear, one thing is clear. These weapons must be dislodged from Saddam Hussein, or Saddam Hussein must be dislodged from power.
- US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, 2002-07-31, quoted in Tara Golshan and Alex Ward (15 October 2019), "Joe Biden’s Iraq problem", Vox
- He made a compelling case. The predominance of the evidence, the pure weight of the evidence, I think anyone. ... Let me put it this way, if I were back practicing law I can’t imagine I could not convince an open-minded jury of the facts that he presented as having been true.
- Hell, I might be president now if it weren't for the fact I said I had an uncle who was a coal miner. Turns out I didn't have anybody in the coal mines, you know what I mean? I tried that crap — it didn't work.
- The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (2004-07-28)
- Mr. President, today, in his speech to the National Endowment for Democracy, President Bush gave a vivid and, I believe, compelling description of the threat to America and to freedom from radical Islamic fundamentalism. He made, in my view, a powerful case for what is at stake for every American. Simply put, the radical fundamentalists seek to kill our citizens in great numbers, to disrupt our economy, and to reshape the international order. They would take the world backwards, replacing freedom with fear and hope with hatred. If they were to acquire a nuclear weapon, the threat they would pose to America would be literally existential. The President said it well. The President is right that we cannot and will not retreat. We will defend ourselves and defeat the enemies of freedom and progress.
- It's going to be very difficult. I do not view abortion as a choice and a right. I think it's always a tragedy, and I think that it should be rare and safe, and I think we should be focusing on how to limit the number of abortions. There ought to be able to have a common ground and consensus as to do that.
- Texas Monthly interview, 2006, quoted in Clark Mindock (14 June 2019), "Joe Biden says he does not view ‘abortion as a choice and a right’ in unearthed video", The Independent (UK)
- I voted for a fence, I voted, unlike most Democrats — and some of you won't like it — I voted for 700 miles of fence,... And the reason why I add that parenthetically, why I believe the fence is needed does not have anything to do with immigration as much as drugs. And let me tell you something folks, people are driving across that border with tons, tons, hear me, tons of everything from byproducts for methamphetamine to cocaine to heroin and it's all coming up through corrupt Mexico.
- South Carolina rotary club (November 27, 2006), quoted in Andrew Kaczynski (10 May 2019), "Joe Biden once said a fence was needed to stop 'tons' of drugs from Mexico", CNN Politics 
- You cannot go to a 7-11 or a Dunkin Donuts unless you have a slight Indian accent ... I'm not joking.
- I'm running for president because I think that, with a lot of help, I can stem the tide of this slide and restore America’s leadership in the world and change our priorities. I will argue that my experience and my track record — both on the foreign and domestic side — put me in a position to be able to do that.
I would respectfully suggest to you that the Democrats out there understand I am the only person with a plan that can get out of Iraq without our interests in the region not falling apart.
- I'm not exploring. I'm in. And this is the beginning of a marathon
- Referring to his choice not to set up an "exploratory committee" and instead enter the race directly; interview on ABC News after announcing candidacy for the 2008 Democratic president nomination (January 30, 2007)
- There's good reason to be excited. You have the first woman running who is qualified, and a very attractive African-American who has demonstrated crossover appeal. I got involved in politics 40 years ago during the civil rights movement, so yes, it's an exciting thing.
- The average voter out there understands that the next president is going to have to be prepared to immediately step in without hesitation and end our involvement in Iraq. It's very difficult to figure out how to move on to broader foreign policy concerns without fixing Iraq first.
- People ask if I can compete with the money of Hillary and Barack. I hope at the end of the day, they can compete with my ideas and my experience.
- "Biden officially running for president", NBC News, 31 January 2007, retrieved on 2007-02-01
- I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy. I mean, that’s a storybook, man.
- Speaking of Presidential candidate Barack Obama
- "Biden Unbound: Lays Into Clinton, Obama, Edwards". The New York Observer. February 1, 2007. Retrieved on 2007-02-01.
- I don't think John Edwards knows what the heck he is talking about. John Edwards wants you and all the Democrats to think, ‘I want us out of there,’ but when you come back and you say, ‘O.K., John. What about the chaos that will ensue? Do we have any interest, John, left in the region?’ Well, John will have to answer yes or no. If he says yes, what are they? What are those interests, John? How do you protect those interests, John, if you are completely withdrawn? Are you withdrawn from the region, John? Are you withdrawn from Iraq, John? In what period? So all this stuff is like so much Fluffernutter out there. So for me, what I think you have to do is have a strategic notion. And they may have it—they are just smart enough not to enunciate it.
- Speaking on Edwards' position for immediate withdrawal of about 40,000 American troops from Iraq (February 5, 2007), reported in the New York Observer
- Tim Russert: But, senator, we have a deficit. We have Social Security and Medicare looming. The number of people on Social Security and Medicare is now 40 million people. It's going to be 80 million in 15 years. Would you consider looking at those programs, age of eligibility—
Joe Biden: Absolutely.
Russert: —cost of living, put it all on the table?
Biden: The answer is absolutely. You have to. You know, it's— one of the things that my, you know, the political advisers say to me is, "Whoa, don't touch that third—" Look, the American people aren't stupid. It's a real simple proposition. [...] Social Security's not the hard one to solve. Medicare, that is the gorilla in the room, and you've got to put all of it on the table.
Biden: Everything. You've got to.
- Meet the Press, 2007-04-29
- [T]here's only three things he mentions in a sentence: a noun, a verb, and 9/11.
- About Rudy Giuliani, Democratic primary debate (October 30, 2007)
- The one thing I want my kids to remember about me is that I was an athlete. The hell with the rest of this stuff.
- "Barack Obama Reveals How He Popped the Question to Joe Biden". People Magazine. August 25, 2008. Retrieved on 2008-08-26.
- When the stock market crashed, Franklin D. Roosevelt got on the television and didn't just talk about the, you know, the princes of greed. He said, 'Look, here's what happened.'
- Interview with CBS Evening News. CBS Evening News (September 22, 2008)
- Like millions of Americans, they're asking questions as profound as they are ordinary. Questions they never thought they would have to ask: Should mom move in with us now that dad is gone? Fifty, sixty, seventy dollars to fill up the car? Winter's coming. How we gonna pay the heating bills? Another year and no raise? Did you hear the company may be cutting our health care? Now, we owe more on the house than it's worth. How are we going to send the kids to college? How are we gonna be able to retire? That's the America that George Bush has left us, and that's the America that George -- excuse me, if John McCain is elected president of the United States.
- When we kicked — along with France, we kicked Hezbollah out of Lebanon, I said and Barack said, "Move NATO forces in there. Fill the vacuum, because if you don’t know — if you don’t, Hezbollah will control it." Now what’s happened? Hezbollah is a legitimate part of the government in the country immediately to the north of Israel.
- Biden-Palin Vice Presidential debates, October 2, 2008
- Vice President Cheney has been the most dangerous vice president we've had probably in American history. The idea he doesn't realize that Article I of the Constitution defines the role of the vice president of the United States, that's the Executive Branch. He works in the Executive Branch. He should understand that. Everyone should understand that. And the primary role of the vice president of the United States of America is to support the president of the United States of America, give that president his or her best judgment when sought, and as vice president, to preside over the Senate, only in a time when in fact there's a tie vote. The Constitution is explicit. The only authority the vice president has from the legislative standpoint is the vote, only when there is a tie vote. He has no authority relative to the Congress.
- Biden at the 2008 Vice Presidential debate. Biden-Palin Vice Presidential debates (October 2, 2008)
- No, Barack Obama nor I support redefining from a civil side what constitutes marriage. No, we do not support that.
- Joe Biden at the 2008 Vice Presidential debate, when asked if he and Barack Obama support gay marriage. Biden-Palin Vice Presidential debates (October 2, 2008)
Promises to Keep (2008)Edit
- He wanted me to understand two big things: First, that nobody, no group, is above others. Public servants are obliged to level with everybody, whether or not they'll like what he has to say. And second, that politics was a matter of personal honor. A man's word is his bond. You give your word, you keep it. For as long as I can remember, I've had a sort of romantic notion of what politics should be- and can be. If you do politics the right way, I believe, you can actually make people's lives better. And integrity is the minimum ante to get into the game. Nearly forty years after I first got involved, I remain captivated by the possibilities of politics and public service. In fact, I believe- as I know my grandpop did- that my chosen profession is a noble calling.
- Pages xv-xvi
- We all know- or at least we are told continually- that we are a divided people. And we know there's a degree of truth in it. We have too often allowed our differences to prevail among us. We have too often allowed ambitious men to play off those differences for political gain. We have too often retreated behind our differences when no one really tried to lead us beyond them. But all our differences hardly measure up to the values we all hold in common... I am running for the Senate because... I want to make the system work again, and I am convinced that is what all Americans really want.
- Pages xvi-xvii
- Full disclosure: I do not have absolute faith in the judgment and wisdom of the American people. We're all human, and we can all be misled. When leaders don't level with citizens, we can't expect them to make good judgments. But I do have absolute faith in the heart of the American people. The greatest resource in this country is the grit, the resolve, the courage, the basic decency, and the stubborn pride of its citizens.
- Page xx
- I wasn't built to look the other way because the law demanded it. The law might be wrong.
- Page 42
- I had no place to go. It was up or out.
- Page 58
- I knew I had to be sure-footed about the issues I was talking about. When you're twenty-nine years old, who the hell is going to think you're credible? It wasn't enough to have ideas; I had to know my facts. I had to demonstrate command from the minute I started running. I understood that was the test I had to pass.
- Page 63
- The fabric of our complex society is woven too tightly to permit any part of it to be damaged without damaging the whole.
- Page 64
- I didn't argue that the war in Vietnam was immoral; it was merely stupid and a horrendous waste of time, money, and lives based on a flawed premise.
- Pages 65-66
- When seagull droppings landed on my head at a campaign event at Bowers Beach two days before Election Day, I chose to read it as a sign of a coming success.
- Page 73
- The first few days I felt trapped in a constant twilight of vertigo, like in the dream where you're suddenly falling... only I was constantly falling. In moments of fitful sleep I was aware of the dim possibility that I would wake up, truly wake up, and this would not have happened.
- Page 80
- Most of all I was numb, but there were moments when the pain cut through like a shard of broken glass. I began to understand how despair led people to just cash it in; how suicide wasn't just an option but a rational option.
- Page 80
- I liked to go at night when I thought there was a better chance of finding a fight. I was always looking for a fight. I had not known I was capable of such rage. I knew I had been cheated of a future, but I felt I'd been cheated of a past, too. The underpinnings of my life had been kicked out from under me... and it wasn't just the loss of Neilia and Naomi. All my life I'd been taught about our benevolent God. This is a forgiving God, a just God, a God who knows people make mistakes. This is a God who is tolerant. This is a God who gave us free will to be able to doubt. This was a loving God, a God of comfort. Well, I didn't want to hear anything about a merciful God. No words, no prayer, no sermon gave me ease. I felt God had played a horrible trick on me, and I was angry. I found no comfort in the Church. So I kept walking the dark streets to try to exhaust the rage.
- Page 81
- I kept trying to tell people that just because I was young didn't mean I could speak for all young people.
- Page 84
- A better man might have handled the situation with more grace than I did. A better man would have been able to separate his personal life from his career.
- Page 87
- There is a great deal of pressure, in the one particular area at least, to prostitute our ideas, if not our integrity.
- Page 93
- Sleep was like a phantom I was too tired to chase.
- Page 96
- A convicted felon who had strong family ties, a stake in the community, and an education might get probation, while a man who had few family ties, little stake in the community, and little education might draw a ten-year sentence for the same crime.
- Page 122
- The system wasn't working, and I thought it was time to err on the side of a new model. What might work, I thought, was a system that promoted personal accountability, consistency, and certainty. Congress could say people who committed the same federal crime, under the same circumstances, were going to jail for the same amount of time. We could give judges a narrower set of sentencing guidelines to work with, and felons would be required to pay the same price. We'd be judging the crime, not the person.
- Page 123
- I think I instinctively understood that my most important duty was to be a target. People were desperate to vent their anger, and if they could yell at a united States senator, all the better. Part of being a public servant, I came to understand in 1978, was absorbing the anger of people who don't know where to turn. If I couldn't solve the problem for them, I had to at least be an outlet.
- Page 127
- As I pushed through to the podium, I could hear people murmuring under their breath: "There he is... Goddam Biden.... Kill the sonofabitch." And these were my voters- working-class Democrats.
- Page 127
- It required a lot less energy, intelligence, and competence to run against government than to try to make government work.
- Page 134
- Just because our political heroes were murdered does not mean that the dream does not still live, buried deep in our broken hearts.
- Page 141
- No matter how well intended our country is, we cannot expect other nations to trust us as much as we trust ourselves.
- Page 145
- I, too, believe there are natural rights that predate any written political or legal documents; we have these rights merely because we're children of God.
- Page 178
- I believe all Americans are born with certain inalienable rights. As a child of God, I believe my rights are not derived from the Constitution. My rights are not derived from any government. My rights are not denied by any majority. My rights are because I exist. They were given to me and each of my fellow citizens by our creator, and they represent the essence of human dignity....
- Page 194
- My own father had always said the measure of a man wasn't how many times or how hard he got knocked down, but how fast he got back up.
- Page 208
- There is never a time when a president can act to stop a tragedy from occurring without being held politically accountable one way or the other. If he does it and fails, he's wrong. If he does it and succeeds, he was never right because it didn't happen. If we go in and stop an act of genocide, we can't prove what we stopped.
- Page 281
- I learned later that the surgeon who put Dole back together after he was so badly injured in World War II was an Armenian whose family had deep memories of the genocidal campaign the Turks had waged against them.
- Page 281
- The carnage was over, but there was still a bitter taste in my mouth.
- Page 284
- In spite of the president's phone call, I remained a vocal critic of the Bush administration's foreign policy priorities through that summer because I didn't trust most of the people he had around him. The civilians in the Department of Defense were unlike any I'd ever seen. They seemed to think our nation was so powerful that we could simply impose our will on the rest of the world with almost no ill consequence. It seemed to me that Rumsfeld and his chief deputy at Defense, Paul Wolfowitz, were so totally in thrall to that conservative think-tank-generated ideology that they were steering the president down a dangerous path. And they were so intent on overturning President Clinton's foreign policy initiatives that they were losing sight of the bigger goal, which was keeping America safe at home and engaged in doing good in the world.
- Page 298
- These were al-Qaeda fighters, the first I'd ever seen up close, and they looked like badasses. As I passed on the outskirts of the grid, many of the prisoners stared directly at me. None of them cowered. I've been in a lot of prisons, but these guys showed a ferocity and a hatred unlike any I'd ever seen.
- Page 321
- Given Iraq's strategic location, its large oil reserves, and the suffering of the Iraqi people, we cannot afford to replace a despot with chaos. It would be a tragedy if we removed a tyrant in Iraq only to leave chaos in its wake.
- Page 335
- I made a mistake. I underestimated the influence of Vice President Cheney, Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld, and the rest of the neocons; I vastly underestimated their disingenuousness and incompetence. So George W. Bush went to war again, and just the way the neocons wanted him to- without significant international backing.
- Page 342
- Things never got better, and Rumsfeld and Cheney never got any wiser. It became increasingly clear that those two men had eroded our country's claim to any moral high ground by flouting the Geneva Conventions. They forced policy decisions that allowed the hideous prisoner abuse at Abu Ghraib in Iraq and encouraged the mistreatment of Muslim prisoners at our facility in Guantánamo in Cuba. I wasn't shy about hammering Rumsfeld.
- Page 351
- It was that hard; I still feel that way. But I believe that President Bush failed to lead. History will judge him harshly not for the mistakes he made- we all make mistakes- but for the opportunities he squandered.
- Page 352
- For the world to follow, we must do more than rattle our sabers and demand allegienace to our vision simply because we believe we are right. We must provide a reason for others to aspire to that vision. And that reason must come with more than the repetition of a bumper-sticker phrase about freedom and democracy. It must come with more than the restatement of failed policy. It must come with the wisdom to admit when we are wrong and resolve to change course and get it right.
- Page 353
- My memory is not as good as... Chief Justice Roberts.
- Ties between our two countries are literally, literally unbreakable.
- addressing the 2010 General Assembly of the Jewish Federations of North America on relations between the United States of America and the State of Israel, 2010-11-07, in New Orleans, Louisiana, United States of America
- "Israel Resumption of Building Settlements Could Derail Peace Talks". PBS Newshour. 2010-11-08. Retrieved on 2012-07-01.
- "Israel Resumption of Building Settlements Could Derail Peace Talks". PBS Newshour. 2010-11-08. Retrieved on 2012-07-01.
- "Biden reaffirms U.S. support for Israel in speech to Jewish group". CNN. 2010-11-07. Retrieved on 2012-07-01. (Misquotation omits the second utterance of the word “literally”.)
- No President of the United States could represent the United States were he not committed to human rights. If you don't understand this, you can't deal with us. President Barack Obama would not be able to stay in power if he did not speak of it. So look at it as a political imperative. It doesn't make us better or worse. It's who we are. You make your decisions. We'll make ours.
- To Jinping Xi (2011-2012), as quoted in "Born Red: How Xi Jinping, an unremarkable provincial administrator, became China’s most authoritarian leader since Mao." (6 April 2015), by Evan Osnos, The New Yorker.
- ISIS has nothing to do with Islam.
Let me tell you one or two things about Islam.
- As quoted in "Notable & Quotable" (23 November 2014), The Wall Street Journal.
- Look, I am Vice President of the United States of America. The president sets the policy. I am absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marrying men, women marrying women, and heterosexual men and women marrying another are entitled to the same exact rights, all the civil rights, all the civil liberties. And quite frankly, I don't see much of a distinction beyond that.
- In response to the question, "You're comfortable with same-sex marriage now?" Meet the Press (May 6, 2012)
- I resent when they talk about families like mine that I grew up in. I resent the fact that they think we're talking about envy: it's job envy, it's wealthy envy; that we don't dream. My mother believed and my father believed that if I wanted to be president of the United States, that I could be, I could be vice president! My mother and father believed that if my brother or sister wanted to be a millionaire, they could be a millionaire! My mother and father dreamed as much as any rich guy dreams! They don't get us! They don't get who we are!
- Make sure of two things. Be careful — microphones are always hot, and understand that in Washington, D.C., a gaffe is when you tell the truth. So, be careful.
- Even the oil companies don't need an incentive of $4 billion to go out and explore. As my grandpop would say, 'They’re doing just fine, thank you'.
- Speech to national conference of the National Association of Black Journalists, Washington, D.C. (June 20, 2012), quoted in Talia Buford (20 June 2012), "Biden: 'A gaffe is when you tell the truth'", Politico
- We got a real clear picture of what they all value. Every Republican's voted for it. Look at what they value and look at their budget and what they're proposing. Romney wants to let the — he said in the first hundred days he’s going to let the big banks once again write their own rules, 'unchain Wall Street'. They're going to put y'all back in chains.
- Campaign speech in Danville, Virginia, criticizing Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan, and the Republican speech, quoted in Jake Tapper (14 August 2012), "VP Biden Says Republicans Are 'Going to Put Y'all Back in Chains'", ABC News
- No dates until you're thirty.
- Alexandra Petri (10 September 2012), "Joe Biden gets cosy with bikers", Washington Post
- It's harder to use an assault weapon to hit something than it is a shotgun, okay?
So if you want to keep people away in an earthquake, buy some shotgun shells.
And so what would happen is the response time, in fact, may have saved one kid's life.
Maybe if it took longer, maybe one more kid would be alive.
I'm making the argument this way:
There's no sporting need that I'm aware of that has a magazine that holds fifty rounds. None that I'm aware of. And I'm a sportsman.
- You can’t talk about the civil rights movement in this country without talking about Jewish freedom riders and Jack Greenberg. You can’t talk about the women’s movement without talking about Betty Friedan. I believe what affects the movements in America, what affects our attitudes in America are as much the culture and the arts as anything else. [...] It wasn’t anything we legislatively did. It was ‘Will and Grace,’ it was the social media. Literally. That’s what changed peoples’ attitudes. That’s why I was so certain that the vast majority of people would embrace and rapidly embrace. Think behind of all that, I bet you 85 percent of those changes, whether it’s in Hollywood or social media are a consequence of Jewish leaders in the industry. The influence is immense, the influence is immense. And, I might add, it is all to the good.
- The Jewish people have contributed greatly to America. No group has had such an outsized influence per capita as all of you standing before you, and all of those who went before me and all of those who went before you ... You make up 11 percent of the seats in the United States Congress. You make up one-third of all Nobel laureates ... I think you, as usual, underestimate the impact of Jewish heritage. I really mean that. I think you vastly underestimate the impact you’ve had on the development of this nation.
- Jennifer Epstein (21 May 2013), "Biden: 'Jewish heritage is American heritage'", Politico and Jonathan Chait (22 May 2013), "Biden Praises Jews, Goes Too Far, Accidentally Thrills Anti-Semites", Intelligencer (New York Magazine)
- We need it badly from a purely – purely economic point of view .. constant, unrelenting stream of immigrants .. not dribbling, significant flows
- 10 June 2014 comments to National Association of Manufacturers, reported later that day by Benjamin Goad of The Hill
- thirdly we need to pass an immigration bill, look at Germany, look at the rest of the world, we're the only non-xenophobic nation in the world that's a major economy
- 10 June 2014 from same speech, YouTube audio excerpt via the DC Examiner
- Remember—no serious guys till you're thirty!
- To young women at swearing-in ceremony for new senators, quoted in Evan Osnos (28 July 2014), "The Biden Agenda", The New Yorker
- When these barbarians replicated with Steven what they did with Foley, who is from New Hampshire, they somehow think that it's going to lessen US resolve, frighten us, intimidate us. But if they think the American people will be intimidated, they don't know us very well. We came back after 9/11, we dusted ourselves off and we made sure that Osama Bin Ladin would never ever again threaten the American people. We came back Boston strong, blaming no one, but resolve to be certain that this didn't happen again. Today America may be still grieving from Jim Foley, a native from New Hampshire as I said he grew up in Rochester, but the American people are so much stronger, so much more resolved than any enemy can fully understand. As a nation, we are united. And when people harm Americans, we don't retreat, we don't forget, we take care of those grieving. And when that's finished, they should know [that] we follow them to the gates of hell until they are brought to justice, because hell is where they will reside.
- Speech at Portsmouth Naval Yard, quoted in "Joe Biden Speech Transcript: We Will Follow Them to the Gates of Hell", Crossmap, 3 September 2014
- The god's truth is, we are a melting pot.
It is the ultimate source of our strength, it is the ultimate source of who we are, what we've become.
It started all the way back in the late 1700s.
There's been a constant unrelenting stream of immigrants.
Not in little trickles, but in large numbers.
He said they're in America looking for the buried black box, and I looked at him just like you're looking at me, like what's he talking about?
He said they're looking for that secret that allows America to constantly be able to remake itself, unlike any other country in the world.
I said, I can presume to tell you what's in that black box, mister president. I'm old enough now.
I said one is that there is in America an overwhelming skepticism for orthodoxy.
From the time a child, whether they're naturalized or they're native-born, they think about it, a child never gets criticized in our education system for challenging orthodoxy, for challenging the status quo.
I would argue it's unlike any other large country in the world.
There's a second thing in that black box. An unrelenting stream of immigration.
Non stop, nonstop.
Folks like me who are Caucasian, of European descent, for the first time in 2017 we'll be an absolute minority in the United States of America. Absolute minority.
Fewer than 50% of the people in America from then and on will be white European stock. That's not a bad thing. That's a source of our strength.
- Good morning everyone. This past week we've seen the best and the worst of humanity. The heinous terrorist attacks in Paris and Beirut, in Iraq and Nigeria. They showed us once again the depths of the terrorist's depravity.And at the same time we saw the world come together in solidarity. Parisians opening their doors to anyone trapped in the street, taxi drivers turning off their meters to get people home safety, people lining up to donate blood. These simple human acts are a powerful reminder that we cannot be broken and in the face of terror we stand as one. In the wake of these terrible events, I understand the anxiety that many Americans feel. I really do. I don't dismiss the fear of a terrorist bomb going off. There's nothing President Obama and I take more seriously though, than keeping the American people safe.In the past few weeks though, we've heard an awful lot of people suggest that the best way to keep America safe is to prevent any Syrian refugee from gaining asylum in the United States.So let's set the record straight how it works for a refugee to get asylum. Refugees face the most rigorous screening of anyone who comes to the United States. First they are finger printed, then they undergo a thorough background check, then they are interviewed by the Department of Homeland Security. And after that the FBI, the National Counterterrorism Center, the Department of Defense and the Department of State, they all have to sign off on access.And to address the specific terrorism concerns we are talking about now, we've instituted another layer of checks just for Syrian refugees. There is no possibility of being overwhelmed by a flood of refugees landing on our doorstep tomorrow. Right now, refugees wait 18 to 24 months while the screening process is completed. And unlike in Europe, refugees don't set foot in the United States until they are thoroughly vetted.Let's also remember who the vast majority of these refugees are: women, children, orphans, survivors of torture, people desperately in need medical help.To turn them away and say there is no way you can ever get here would play right into the terrorists' hands. We know what ISIL - we know what they hope to accomplish. They flat-out told us.Earlier this year, the top ISIL leader al-Baghdadi revealed the true goal of their attacks. Here's what he said: "Compel the crusaders to actively destroy the gray zone themselves. Muslims in the West will quickly find themselves between one and two choices. Either apostatize or emigrate to the Islamic State and thereby escape persecution." So it's clear. It's clear what ISIL wants. They want to manufacture a clash between civilizations. They want frightened people to think in terms of "us versus them."They want us to turn our backs on Muslims victimized by terrorism. But this gang of thugs peddling a warped ideology, they will never prevail. The world is united in our resolve to end their evil. And the only thing ISIL can do is spread terror in hopes that we will in turn, turn on ourselves. We will betray our ideals and take actions, actions motivated by fear that will drive more recruits into the arms of ISIL. That's how they win. We win by prioritizing our security as we've been doing. Refusing to compromise our fundamental American values: freedom, openness, tolerance. That's who we are. That's how we win .May God continue to bless the United States of America and God bless our troops.
- Weekly presidential address (21 November 2015).
- In the 21st century, nations cannot; and we cannot allow them to redraw borders by force. These are the ground rules. And if we fail to uphold them, we will rue the day. Russia has violated these ground rules and continues to violate them. Today Russia is occupying sovereign Ukrainian territory. Let me be crystal clear: The United States does not, will not, never will recognize Russia’s attempt to annex the Crimea. (Applause.) It’s that saying -- that simple. There is no justification.
- Remarks by Vice President Joe Biden to The Ukrainian Rada (9 December 2015).
- Article Two of the Constitution clearly states, whenever there is a vacancy in one of the Court's created by the Constitution itself, the Supreme Court of the United States, the president shall — not may — the president shall appoint someone to fill the vacancy with the advice and consent of the United States Senate. And advice and consent includes consulting and voting!
- Speech (24 March 2016) quoted in WATCH: Biden Says Biden Rule Doesn't Exist (19 September 2020), Bronson Stocking, Townhall
- Israel will not get everything it asks for... I firmly believe that the actions that Israel's government has taken over the past several years — the steady and systematic expansion of settlements, the legalization of outposts, land seizures — they're moving us, and, more importantly, they're moving Israel in the wrong direction
- "US feels 'overwhelming frustration' with Israeli government, says Biden", The Guardian, 19 April 2016
- This was the diving board area, and I was one of the guards, and they weren't allowed to—it was a 3-meter board. And if you fell off sideways, you landed on the damn, er, darn cement over there... And Corn Pop was a bad dude. And he ran a bunch of bad boys. And back in those days—to show how things have changed—one of the things you had to use, if you used Pomade in your hair, you had to wear a baby cap. And so he was up on the board and wouldn't listen to me.I said, "Hey, Esther, you! Off the board, or I'll come up and drag you off." Well, he came off, and he said, "I'll meet you outside..." My car was mostly, these were all public housing behind us, my car—there was a gate on here. I parked my car outside the gate. And he said, "I'll be waiting for you." He was waiting for me with three guys with straight razors. Not a joke.
There was a guy named Bill Wright the only white guy and he did all the pools. He was a mechanic. And I said, "What am I gonna do?" And he said. "Come down here in the basement, where all the mechanics—where all the pool builder is." You know the chain, there used to be a chain that went across the deep end. And he cut off a six-foot length of chain, and folded it up and he said, "You walk out with that chain, and you walk to the car and say, 'you may cut me man, but I'm gonna wrap this chain around your head.'" I said, "You're kidding me." He said, "No if you don't, don't come back." And he was right. So I walked out with the chain. And I walked up to my car. And in those days, you remember the straight razors, you had to bang 'em on the curb, gettin' em rusty, puttin' em in the rain barrel, gettin' em rusty? And I looked at him, but I was smart, then. I said, "First of all," I said, "when I tell you to get off the board, you get off the board, and I'll kick you out again, but I shouldn't have called you Esther Williams, and I apologize for that. I apologize." But I didn't know that apology was gonna work. He said, "you apologize to me?" I said, "I apologize but not for throwing you out, but I apologize for what I said." He said, "OK," closed that straight razor, and my heart began to beat again.
- You know, shortly after I graduated in '68, Kent State, 17 kids shot dead. And so, the younger generation now tells me how tough things are—give me a break! No, no, I have no empathy for it. Give me a break. Because here's the deal, guys—we decided we were going to change the world, and we did. We did. We finished the civil rights movement to the first stage. The women's movement came into being. So my message is "Get involved."
- "Ideas Exchange" at Orpheum Theatre, Los Angeles, 2018-01-10, quoted in Dan MacGuill (7 May 2019), "Did U.S. Presidential Candidate Joe Biden Say He Had ‘No Empathy’ for the Plight of Younger People?", Snopes.com
- I was supposed to announce that there was another billion-dollar loan guarantee [for Ukraine]. And I had gotten a commitment from Poroshenko and from Yatsenyuk that they would take action against the state prosecutor. And they didn't... So they said they had — they were walking out to a press conference. I said, nah... we're not going to give you the billion dollars. They said, you have no authority. You're not the president. The president said — I said, call him. I said, I'm telling you, you're not getting the billion dollars... I looked at them and said: I'm leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you're not getting the money. Well, son of a bitch. He got fired. And they put in place someone who was solid.
- Joe Biden, Speech at the Council on Foreign Relations (Jan. 23, 2018), quoted in Bethania Palma (9 October 2019), "Does a C-SPAN Video Show Joe Biden ‘Confessing to Bribery’?", Snopes.com, retrieved on 2020-03-12 (For context, see Glenn Greenwald quotes below in 'quotes about')
- Paul Ryan was correct when he did the tax code. What's the first thing he decided we needed to go after? Social Security and Medicare. We need to do something about Social Security and Medicare.
- Brookings Institution and Biden Foundation speech, 2018-05-08, quoted in Branko Marcetic (26 April 2019), "Biden Says He’s the Workers’ Candidate, But He Has Worked To Cut Medicare and Social Security", In These Times
- What happened today to @JussieSmollett must never be tolerated in this country. We must stand up and demand that we no longer give this hate safe harbor; that homophobia and racism have no place on our streets or in our hearts. We are with you, Jussie.
- Twitter, 29 January 2019, quoted in Larry Elder (21 February 2019), "Jussie Smollett Supporters: Rooting for a 'Modern Lynching'", RealClearPolitics, retrieved on 2020-03-12
- I'm sorry I didn’t understand more. I'm not sorry for any of my intentions. I'm not sorry for anything that I have ever done. I have never been disrespectful intentionally to a man or a woman. So that's not the reputation I've had since I was in high school, for God's sake.
- Regarding allegations that he inappropriately violated women's space
- Quoted in Brett Samuels (5 April 2019), "Biden: 'I'm not sorry for anything that I have ever done'", The Hill
- The rest of the world is wondering what’s going on... Eight years of this and I think we’ll have a phenomenal dislocation occur around the world. I think you’ll see the end of NATO and a whole range of other things...
- "Joe Biden in Florida: Another four years of Trump will ‘end NATO’", Miami Herald, 22 May 2019
- I mean, we may not want to demonize anybody who has made money. The truth of the matter is, you all, you all know, you all know in your gut what has to be done. We can disagree in the margins but the truth of the matter is it’s all within our wheelhouse and nobody has to be punished. No one's standard of living will change, nothing would fundamentally change.
- Manhattan, 18 June 2019, quoted in Igor Derysh (19 June 2019), "Joe Biden to rich donors: "Nothing would fundamentally change" if he's elected", Salon
- Poor kids are just as bright and just as talented as white kids.
- Matt Stevens (9 August 2019), "Joe Biden Says ‘Poor Kids’ Are Just as Bright as ‘White Kids’", New York Times
- This guy climbed down a ravine, carried this guy up on his back, under fire, and the general wanted me to pin the Silver Star on him. I got up there- this is the God's honest truth, my word as a Biden. He stood at attention. I went to pin it on him. He said, "Sir, I don't want the damn thing. Do not pin it on me, sir. Please, sir. Do not do that. He died! He died!"
- Matt Viser and Greg Jaffe (29 August 2019), "As he campaigns for president, Joe Biden tells a moving but false war story", Washington Post
- Corn Pop was a bad dude, and he ran with a bunch of bad boys.
- Adam Gabbatt (16 September 2019), Why is everyone talking about Biden confronting a man called 'CornPop'?
- You get a tax break for a racehorse, why in God's name couldn't we provide an $8,000 tax credit for everybody who has childcare costs? It would put 720 million women back in the workforce. It would increase the GDP, to sound like a wonk here, by about eight-tenths of one percent. It would grow the economy.
- Joseph Wulfsohn (17 September 2019), "Biden vows tax credit will put '720 million women' back in workforce", Fox News [better source needed]
- Putin knows that when I am president of the United States, his days of tyranny and trying to intimidate the United States and those in Eastern Europe are over
- October 2019, quoted in Hanna Panreck (22 February 2022), Political commentators, journalists dig up Biden's old warnings Putin 'doesn't want' him to be president, Fox News [better source needed]
- Why should we allow people to have military-style weapons including pistols with nine-millimeter bullets and can hold ten or more rounds?
- If you notice, I have more people supporting me in the black community that have announced for me, because they know me.
- You should vote for Trump. You should vote for Trump.
- Jeanine Santucci (22 November 2019), "Joe Biden tells activist, 'You should vote for Trump,' over criticism of Obama deportations", USA Today
- Joe Biden: You have to go vote for someone else. You're not going to vote for me in the primary.
Ed Fallon: I'm going to vote for you in the general if you treat me right.
Joe Biden: Yeah, I know. Well, I'm not.
- Iowa campaign appearance, 2020-01-29, quoted in Austin Boatright (20 May 2020), "Joe Biden, We Don’t Owe You Our Vote", Medium
- You always love your dad.
You don’t always like your dad sometimes.
But granddaughters not only love THEIR dads — their grandpops — they ALWAYS like them, and that’s the GREAT thing.
I want you to meet Finnegan.
- 2 February 2020, reported 21 October 2020 by Ali Swenson of AP News
- 150 million people have been killed [by guns] since 2007 when Bernie voted to exempt the gun manufacturers from liability. More than all the wars including Vietnam from that point on.
- 2020 South Carolina Democratic debate, 2020-02-25, quoted in Jeffrey Martin (25 February 2020), "Biden Says Over 150 Million Americans Killed by Gun Violence Since 2007, Which Would Be Half of U.S. Population", Newsweek
- This is a guy (Chinese leader Xi Jinping) who doesn’t have a democratic — with a small d — bone is his body. This is a guy who is a thug.
- 2020 Democratic Party presidential debates, 2020-02-25, quoted in Steven Lee Myers and Javier C. Hernández (22 September 2020), "In Biden, China Sees an ‘Old Friend’ and Possible Foe", The New York Times
- You ever been to a caucus? [audience member nods] No you haven't. You're a lying dog-faced pony soldier.
- Manchester, New Hampshire, 2020-02-09, quoted in Anna North, "Biden’s “lying dog-faced pony soldier” moment, explained", Vox
- I had the great honor of meeting him. I had the great honor of being arrested with our UN Ambassador on the streets of Soweto, trying to get to see him on Robbens Island.
- Regarding Nelson Mandela
- campaign event, 2020-02-11, quoted in Amy Sherman (4 March 2020), "Joe Biden’s Pants on Fire claim about his arrest in South Africa", Politifact
- We hold these truths to be self-evident. All men and women created ... by the — you know — you know, the thing.
- Texas, quoted in Dominick Mastrangelo (2 March 2020), "'You know, the thing': Biden botches Declaration of Independence quote during campaign stop", Washington Examiner
- This guy can change the face of what we're dealing with, with regard to guns, assault weapons, with regard to dealing with climate change. And I'm just warning Amy: If I win, I'm coming for him.
- Referring to Beto O'Rourke; Whataburger, Dallas, Texas, quoted in Madlin Mekelburg (13 March 2020), "Video doesn't show Joe Biden promising to 'take away Americans’ guns'", PolitiFact
- Lawrence O'Donnell: Let's flash forward. You're president. Bernie Sanders is still active in the Senate. He manages to get Medicare for All through the Senate, in some compromise version, the Elizabeth Warren version or other version. Nancy Pelosi gets a version of it through the House of Representatives. It comes to your desk. Do you veto it?
Joe Biden: I would veto anything that delays providing the security and the certainty of healthcare being available now. If they got that through and by some miracle, there was an epiphany that occurred, and some miracle occurred that said OK, it's passed, then you got to look at the cost. And I want to know how did they find the $35 trillion? What is that doing?
- The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell, 9 March 2020
- One of the things that I did early on in my career as a U.S. Senator was I was one of the sponsors of the Endangered Species Act. And one of the other things we’ve done is we in the state of Delaware set up the coastal zone legislation which means that they can’t build any factories or anything within one mile of the estuary of the Delaware River and the Atlantic Ocean and the Chesapeake.
- Virtual town hall, 2020-03-13, quoted in Jerry Lambe (14 March 2020), "Joe Biden Falsely Says He Sponsored the Endangered Species Act", Law & Crime
- We have to take care of the cure. That will make the problem worse, no matter what. No matter what. We know what has to be done. We know you have to — you're tired of hearing the phrase, you got to flatten that curve where it's going up like this, people getting it, and then it comes down.
- The View, 2020-03-24, quoted in Johnathan Jones (24 March 2020), "Biden Claims Twice That 'No Matter What' the COVID Cure Will Make Things Worse", The Western Journal
- In every single crisis we have had that I have been around, going back to Jimmy Carter and the hostages all the way through to this moment, presidents’ ratings have always gone up in a crisis, but that old expression, the proof is going to be in eating the pudding. What’s it going to look like?
- We cannot let this, we've never allowed any crisis from the Civil War straight through to the pandemic of 17, all the way around, 16, we have never, never let our democracy sakes second fiddle, way they, we can both have a democracy and elections and, at the same time, correct the public health.
- This Week with George Stephanopoulos, ABC, 2020-04-05
- I think it's close to criminal the way they're dealing with this guy. Not his conduct. The idea that this man stood up and said what had to be said, got it out that his troops, his Navy personnel were in danger. Look how many had the virus. I think he should have a commendation rather than be fired.
- Regarding the firing of Brett Crozier
- This Week with George Stephanopoulos, ABC, 2020-04-05, quoted in Justine Coleman (5 April 2020), "Biden says dismissal of aircraft carrier captain is 'close to criminal'", The Hill
- There are people who support the president because they like the fact that he is engaged in the politics of division. They really support the notion that, you know, all Mexicans are rapists and all Muslims are bad and ... dividing this nation based on ethnicity, race. This is the one of the few presidents who succeeded by deliberately trying to divide the country, not unite the country.
- The people who voted Republican last time ... who don't want to vote for Trump, whether they want to vote for me or not is a different story, but they don't want to vote for Trump, they're looking for an alternative and I think, I hope to God, I can provide that alternative ... I really mean it. I think there's a chance.
- Fundraiser, 2020-04-15, quoted in Jonathan Easley (16 April 2020), "Biden on if he can reach Trump's base: 'Probably not'", The Hill
- I wouldn't vote for me if I believed Tara Reade.
- Interview on the sexual assault allegation regarding former staff worker Tara Reade, as quoted in Elena Moore (15 May 2020), "Biden Says Voters Who Believe Tara Reade 'Probably Shouldn't Vote For Me'", Associated Press
- My wife Jill has a great expression. She's a doctor of Education and she's been a teacher for years and she'd say any country that out-educates us will out-compete us.
My dad used to say I don't expect the government to solve my problems but I expect them to understand my problems give me a fighting chance.
- Joe Biden Answers The Web's Most Searched Questions WIRED, 21 May 2020
- From the very beginning you weren't allowed to have certain weapons. You weren't allowed to own a cannon during the Revolutionary War as an individual.
- If you have a problem figuring out whether you're for me or Trump, then you ain't black.
- Interview with African American radio host Charlamagne tha God on "The Breakfast Club", as quoted in Nicholas Wu (22 May 2020), "Joe Biden, in testy interview, says 'you ain’t black’ if you're undecided over him vs. Trump", USA TODAY
- Because we also have to fundamentally change the way police are trained. [...] And the idea that instead of standing there and teaching a cop when there's an unarmed person coming at 'em with a knife or something, shoot 'em in the leg instead of in the heart. It's a very different thing. There's a lot of different things that can change.
- Bethel AME Church, Wilmington, Delaware, 2020-06-01, quoted in Emily Jacobs (2 June 2020), "Biden: Officers should train to shoot attackers ‘in the leg instead of the heart’", New York Post
- When it comes to COVID-19, after months of doing nothing, other than predicting the virus would disappear or maybe, if you drank bleach, you may be okay, Trump has simply given up.
- There is no more consequential challenge that we must meet in the next decade than the onrushing climate crisis. Left unchecked, it is literally an existential threat to the health of our planet and to our very survival... We are an economy in crisis but with an incredible opportunity: To not just rebuild back to where we were before, but better, stronger, more resilient and more prepared to the challenges that lie ahead... These aren’t pie-in-the-sky dreams. These are actionable policies that we can get to work on right away... Nothing’s a hoax. Nothing’s a hoax about that. It’s a very serious subject. I want clean air. I want clean water. I want the cleanest air, want the cleanest water. The environment is very important to me.
- Quoted in Ebony Bowden (14 July 2020), "Joe Biden unveils his $2T AOC-fueled Green New Deal energy agenda", New York Post
- Trump and Pence are running on this and I find it fascinating, quote, "You won't be safe in Joe Biden's America". And what's their proof? The violence we're seeing in Donald Trump's America. These are not images of some imagined "Joe Biden America" in the future. These are images of Donald Trump's America today. He keeps telling you if only he was president, it wouldn't happen, if he was president. He keeps telling us that if he was president, you'd feel safe. Well, he is president whether he knows it or not. And it is happening. It's getting worse and you know why. Because Donald Trump adds fuel to every fire.
- Campaign speech, Pittsburgh, 2020-08-31, quoted in Averi Harper, Beatrice Peterson, and Libby Cathey (31 August 2020), "Biden paints Trump as someone who 'sows chaos rather than providing order'", ABC News
- He talked about how nothing was going to defeat him. How whether he walked again or not, he was not going to give up.
- If Donald Trump has his way, the complications from COVID-19, which are well beyond what they should be — it’s estimated that 200 million people have died — probably by the time I finish this talk.
- Yaron Steinbuch (21 September 2020), "Joe Biden mistakenly says 200 million people have died from COVID-19 in US" New York Post
- And, by the way, the 20, the 200 mil- the 200,000 people that have died on his watch, how many of those have survived?
- During the first presidential debate (29 September 2020), Donald Trump & Joe Biden 1st Presidential Debate Transcript (2020), Rev
- 220,000 deaths.
If you hear nothing else I say tonight, hear this:
Anyone who is responsible for that many deaths should not remain President of the United States.
- I know how deep and hard the opposing views are in our country on so many things. But I also know this as well. To make progress, we have to stop treating our opponents as enemies. We are not enemies. What brings us together as Americans is so much stronger than anything that can tear us apart. So let me be clear. I, we, are campaigning as a Democrats, but I will govern as an American president. The presidency itself is not a partisan institution. It’s the one office in this nation that represents everyone and it demands a duty of care for all Americans. That is precisely what I will do. I will work as hard for those who didn’t vote for me as I will for those who did vote for me. Now, every vote must be counted. No one’s going to take our democracy away from us, not now, not ever. America’s come too far. America’s fought too many battles. America’s endured too much to ever let that happen.
We the people will not be silenced. We the people will not be bullied. We the people will not surrender. My friends, I’m confident we’ll emerge victorious. But this will not be my victory alone or our victory alone. It’ll be a victory for the American people, for our democracy, for America. And there will be no blue states and red states when we win, just the United States of America, God bless you all and may God protect our troops. Thank you.
Victory speech as US President-electEdit
- Victory speech as US President-elect (7 November 2020), as quoted in Hope, Healing And 'Better Angels': Biden Declares Victory And Vows Unity (7 November 2020), NPR
- My fellow Americans, the people of this nation have spoken. They have delivered us a clear victory. A convincing victory. A victory for "We the People." We have won with the most votes ever cast for a presidential ticket in the history of this nation — 74 million. I am humbled by the trust and confidence you have placed in me. I pledge to be a President who seeks not to divide, but to unify. Who doesn't see Red and Blue states, but a United States. And who will work with all my heart to win the confidence of the whole people.
For that is what America is about: The people. And that is what our Administration will be about.
I sought this office to restore the soul of America. To rebuild the backbone of the nation — the middle class. To make America respected around the world again and to unite us here at home. It is the honor of my lifetime that so many millions of Americans have voted for this vision. And now the work of making this vision real is the task of our time.
- I am proud of the campaign we built and ran. I am proud of the coalition we put together, the broadest and most diverse in history. Democrats, Republicans and Independents. Progressives, moderates and conservatives. Young and old. Urban, suburban and rural. Gay, straight, transgender. White. Latino. Asian. Native American. And especially for those moments when this campaign was at its lowest — the African American community stood up again for me. They always have my back, and I'll have yours. I said from the outset I wanted a campaign that represented America, and I think we did that. Now that's what I want the administration to look like. And to those who voted for President Trump, I understand your disappointment tonight. I've lost a couple of elections myself. But now, let's give each other a chance.
It's time to put away the harsh rhetoric. To lower the temperature. To see each other again. To listen to each other again. To make progress, we must stop treating our opponents as our enemy. We are not enemies. We are Americans. The Bible tells us that to everything there is a season — a time to build, a time to reap, a time to sow. And a time to heal. This is the time to heal in America.
- Americans have called on us to marshal the forces of decency and the forces of fairness. To marshal the forces of science and the forces of hope in the great battles of our time. The battle to control the virus. The battle to build prosperity. The battle to secure your family's health care. The battle to achieve racial justice and root out systemic racism in this country. The battle to save the climate. The battle to restore decency, defend democracy, and give everybody in this country a fair shot. Our work begins with getting COVID under control. We cannot repair the economy, restore our vitality, or relish life's most precious moments — hugging a grandchild, birthdays, weddings, graduations, all the moments that matter most to us — until we get this virus under control.
- I ran as a proud Democrat. I will now be an American president. I will work as hard for those who didn't vote for me — as those who did. Let this grim era of demonization in America begin to end — here and now. The refusal of Democrats and Republicans to cooperate with one another is not due to some mysterious force beyond our control. It's a decision. It's a choice we make. And if we can decide not to cooperate, then we can decide to cooperate. And I believe that this is part of the mandate from the American people. They want us to cooperate. That's the choice I'll make. And I call on the Congress — Democrats and Republicans alike — to make that choice with me. The American story is about the slow, yet steady widening of opportunity.
Make no mistake: Too many dreams have been deferred for too long. We must make the promise of the country real for everybody — no matter their race, their ethnicity, their faith, their identity, or their disability.
- We stand again at an inflection point. We have the opportunity to defeat despair and to build a nation of prosperity and purpose. We can do it. I know we can. I've long talked about the battle for the soul of America. We must restore the soul of America. Our nation is shaped by the constant battle between our better angels and our darkest impulses. It is time for our better angels to prevail Tonight, the whole world is watching America. I believe at our best America is a beacon for the globe. And we lead not by the example of our power, but by the power of our example.
- Now, together — on eagle's wings — we embark on the work that God and history have called upon us to do. With full hearts and steady hands, with faith in America and in each other, with a love of country — and a thirst for justice — let us be the nation that we know we can be. A nation united. A nation strengthened. A nation healed. The United States of America. God bless you. And may God protect our troops.
- My dad used to say, “Joey, I don’t expect the government to solve my problems. But I expect it to understand my problems.”
Folks out there aren’t looking for a handout — they just need help. They’re in trouble through no fault of their own, and they need us to understand.
- Official Twitter account of Joe Biden, 5 December 2020
- If we cannot make significant progress on racial equity, this country is doomed. It's doomed not just because of African Americans, but because by 2040, this country is going to be minority white European. You hear me? ... And you guys are going to have to starting [sic] working more with Hispanics.
- I also don’t think we should get too far ahead ourselves on dealing with police reform in that, because they’ve already labeled us as being ‘defund the police’ anything we put forward in terms of the organizational structure to change policing — which I promise you, will occur.
- That’s how they beat the living hell out of us across the country, saying that we’re talking about defunding the police. We’re not. We’re talking about holding them accountable. We’re talking about giving them money to do the right things. We’re talking about putting more psychologists and psychiatrists on the telephones when the 911 calls through. We’re talking about spending money to enable them to do their jobs better, not with more force, with less force and more understanding.
- Biden on a call with Civil Rights leaders on December 8, 2020. Inside Biden's Meeting with Civil Rights Leaders (December 10, 2020). Fact check: Biden's 'country is doomed' quote is being taken out of context on social media (December 23, 2020).
- At this hour, our democracy's under unprecedented assault. Unlike anything we've seen in modern times. An assault on the citadel of liberty, the Capitol itself. An assault on the people's representatives and the Capitol Hill police, sworn to protect them. And the public servants who work at the heart of our Republic... Let me be very clear. The scenes of chaos at the Capitol do not reflect a true America. Do not represent who we are. What we're seeing are a small number of extremists dedicated to lawlessness. This is not dissent. It's disorder. It's chaos. It borders on sedition. And it must end now.
- , CNN.com (January 6, 2021)
- The words of a president matter, no matter how good or bad that president is. At their best, the words of a president can inspire. At their worst, they can incite. Therefore, I call on President Trump to go on national television now to fulfill his oath and defend the Constitution and demand an end to this siege...Threatening the safety of elected officials, it’s no protest. It's insurrection. The world's watching. Like so many other Americans, I am shocked and saddened that our nation, so long the beacon of light and hope for democracy, has come to such a dark moment...President Trump: Step up.
- , CNN.com (January 6, 2021)
- We expect these additional 200 million doses to be delivered this summer. And some of it will come as early — begin to come in early summer, but by the mid- — by the mid-summer, that this vaccine will be there. And the order — and that increases the total vaccine order in the United States by 50 percent — from 400 million ordered to 600 million. This is enough vaccine to fully vaccinate 300 Americans by the end of the summer, beginning of the fall. But we want to make — look, that’s — I want to repeat: It’ll be enough to fully vaccinate 300 Americans to beat this pandemic — 300 million Americans.
- Biden speaking on vaccine distribution; as quoted in "Remarks by President Biden on the Fight to Contain the COVID-19 Pandemic", whitehouse.org, 26 January 2021
Presidential Inaugural Address (2021)Edit
- Hear one another. See one another. Show respect to one another. Politics doesn′t have to be a raging fire, destroying everything in its path. Every disagreement doesn′t have to be a cause for total war. And we must reject the culture in which facts themselves are manipulated, and even manufactured.
- My fellow Americans, we have to be different than this. America has to be better than this, and I believe America is so much better than this. Just look around. Here we stand, in the shadow of the Capitol dome, as it was mentioned earlier, completed amid the civil war, when the union itself was literally hanging in the balance. Yet, we endured. We prevailed.
- [T]his is America′s day. This is democracy′s day, a day of history and hope, of renewal and resolve. Through a crucible for the ages, America has been tested anew. And America has risen to the challenge. Today we celebrate the triumph, not of a candidate, but of a cause, the cause of democracy. The people, the will of the people, has been heard, and the will of the people has been heeded.
We′ve learned again that democracy is precious. Democracy is fragile. And at this hour, my friends, democracy has prevailed.
- As quoted by "This Is Democracy's Day": Joe Biden Sworn In as 46th President of the United States. Common Dreams (2021-01-20). Retrieved on 2021-01-20. and ‘This is democracy’s day’: Joe Biden urges unity in inaugural address – video. Guardian Media Group (2021-01-20). Retrieved on 2021-01-20., among others.
- [T]he American story depends not on any one of us, not on some of us, but on all of us, on we the people, who seek a more perfect union. This is a great nation. We are good people. And over the centuries, through storm and strife, in peace and in war, we′ve come so far, but we still have far to go.
We′ll press forward with speed and urgency, for we have much to do in this winter of peril and significant possibilities. Much to repair, much to restore, much to heal, much to build, and much to gain. Few people in our nation′s history have been more challenged or found a time more challenging or difficult than the time we′re in now.
- In another January, on New Year′s Day in 1863, Abraham Lincoln signed the emancipation proclamation. When he put pen to paper, the president said, and I quote, “if my name ever goes down into history, it′ll be for this act, and my whole soul is in it.”
“My whole soul is in it.” Today, on this January day, my whole soul is in this: bringing America together, uniting our people, uniting our nation. And I ask every American to join me in this cause.
Uniting to fight the foes we face, anger, resentment and hatred, extremism, lawlessness, violence, disease, joblessness and hopelessness. With unity, we can do great things, important things.
- I know speaking of unity can sound to some like a foolish fantasy these days. I know that the forces that divide us are deep and they are real. But I also know they are not new. Our history has been a constant struggle between the American ideal that we all are created equal, and the harsh ugly reality that racism, nativism, fear, demonization have long torn us apart.
The battle is perennial, and victory is never assured. Through civil war, the great depression, World War, 9/11, through struggle, sacrifices, and setbacks, our better angels have always prevailed. In each of these moments, enough of us have come together to carry all of us forward, and we can do that now.
- History, faith, and reason show the way, the way of unity. We can see each other, not as adversaries, but as neighbors. We can treat each other with dignity and respect. We can join forces, stop the shouting, and lower the temperature.
For without unity, there is no peace, only bitterness and fury. No progress, only exhausting outrage. No nation, only a state of chaos. This is our historic moment of crisis and challenge, and unity is the path forward. And we must meet this moment as the United States of America. If we do that, I guarantee you, we will not fail. We have never, ever, ever, ever failed in America when we′ve acted together.
And so today, at this time, in this place, let′s start afresh, all of us. Let′s begin to listen to one another again.
- Look, I understand that many of my fellow Americans view the future with fear and trepidation. I understand they worry about their jobs. I understand like my dad, they lay in bed wondering, can I keep my health care, can I pay my mortgage. Thinking about their families, about what comes next. I promise you, I get it.
But the answer is not to turn inward, to retreat into competing factions, distrusting those who don't look like you or worship the way you do or don't get their news from the same source as you do. We must end this uncivil war that pits red against blue, rural versus urban, conservative versus liberal. We can do this if we open our souls instead of hardening our hearts. If we show a little tolerance and humility, and if we are willing to stand in the other person′s shoes—as my mom would say—just for a moment, stand in their shoes. Because here′s the thing about life: there′s no accounting for what fate will deal you.
- We must set aside politics and finally face this pandemic as one nation, one nation. And I promise you this. As the Bible says, “weep, ye may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.” We will get through this together. Together.
Look, folks, all my colleagues that I served with in the house and the senate up here, we all understand, the world is watching, watching all of us today. So here′s my message to those beyond our borders.
America has been tested, and we′ve come out stronger for it. We will repair our alliances and engage with the world once again. Not to meet yesterday′s challenges, but today′s and tomorrow′s challenges. And we′ll lead not merely by the example of our power, but by the power of our example. We′ll be a strong and trusted partner for peace, progress, and security.
- Folks, this is a time of testing. We face an attack on our democracy and on truth. A raging virus, growing inequity, the sting of systemic racism, a climate in crisis. America′s role in the world. Any one of these would be enough to challenge us in profound ways. But the fact is, we face them all at once. Presenting this nation with one of the gravest responsibilities we′ve had. Now we′re going to be tested.
Are we going to step up, all of us? It′s time for boldness, for there is so much to do. And this is certain. I promise you, we will be judged, you and I, by how we resolve these cascading crises of our era. We will rise to the occasion, is the question. Will we master this rare and difficult hour?
- [T]ogether we shall write an American story of hope, not fear. Of unity, not division. Of light, not darkness. A story of decency and dignity, love and healing, greatness and goodness.
May this be the story that guides us, the story that inspires us, and the story that tells ages yet to come that we answered the call of history, we met the moment. Democracy and hope, truth and justice, did not die on our watch, but thrived, that America secured liberty at home and stood once again as a beacon to the world. That is what we owe our forebears, one another, and generations to follow.
So, with purpose and resolve, we turn to those tasked of our time, sustained by faith, driven by conviction, and devoted to one another and the country we love with all our hearts. May God bless America and may God protect our troops. Thank you, America.
Remarks by President Biden to Department of Defense Personnel, February 10, 2021Edit
- President Joe Biden remarks to the US Defense Department, as quoted in "Remarks by President Biden to Department of Defense Personnel", WhiteHouse.gov (10 February 2021)
- So often, our Armed Forces and the Department of Defense staff are how the rest of the world encounters America. And you all know as well as anyone that our country is safer and stronger when we lead not just with the example of our power, but with the power of our example.
- As your Commander-in-Chief, I will never hesitate to use force to defend the vital interests of the American people and our allies around the world when necessary. The central, indispensable mission of the Department of Defense is to deter aggression from our enemies and, if required, to fight and win wars to keep America safe.
- I believe force should be a tool of last resort, not first. I understand the full weight of what it means to ask young, proud Americans to stand in the breach. As was referenced by the Secretary, my son Beau served in Iraq for a year. I’m the first President in 40 years, I’m told, who had a son or daughter who served in a warzone. So I know what it’s like. Being Commander-in-Chief is an enormous responsibility and one that I will never take lightly or easily.
- I also know that you are essential to the work of our diplomacy — not only as the ultimate guarantor of our security, but as diplomats yourselves.
- You know, to the incredible individuals who serve in our Armed Forces: You are unquestionably part of the finest fighting force in the history of the world. You’re warriors. The work you do each and every day is vital to ensuring the American people — your families, friends, and loved ones — are able to live in peace and security and growing prosperity. And for those of you who raise your hands and sign up to wear the uniform of the United States: We owe you an incredible debt.
- I’ve said for many years, less than one percent of Americans do what you do: put yourself on the line for the rest of the 99 percent of the Americans you represent. The 99 percent of us owe you. We owe it to you to keep the faith with our sacred obligation to properly prepare and equip you when we send you into harm’s way, and to care for you and your families, both while you are deployed and after you return home. You’re incredible heroes and incredible patriots. I will never, ever dishonest you — dishonor you. I will never disrespect you. I will never politicize the work you do. That goes for our civilian professionals as well as the career military.
- It’s on all of us to stand up, to speak out when you see someone being abused. This is an organization that’s defined American — excuse me, defeated American enemies on land, sea, and air, and been defined by the way we treat others.
- I know this is the honor of my lifetime. The honor of my lifetime is to serve as your Commander-in-Chief.
- February is Black History Month, as the Vice President pointed out. Before we leave today, Vice President Harris and I are going to visit the hall honoring the long history of black Americans fighting for this country, even when their contributions were not always recognized or honored appropriately. But those contributions have nevertheless helped push our country toward greater equality. From the bravery of the free and enslaved descendants of Africans who fought with the colonial forces in our revolution; to the black regiments that joined to fight for the Union and for their own freedom in the Civil War; to the Buffalo soldiers, including Henry O. Flipper, the first African American graduate of West Point; and Cathay Williams, the first African American woman — Cathay — who enlisted in the United States Army.
- At this very moment, so many of them, our fellow Americans, are on the front lines of this pandemic trying to save lives and still — still are forced to live in fear for their lives just walking down streets in America," he said. "It's wrong, it's un-American, and it must stop.
- We will not shy away from engaging in the hard work to take on the damaging legacy of slavery and our treatment of Native Americans, or from doing the daily work of addressing systemic racism and violence against Black, Native, Latino, Asian American and Pacific Islander, and other communities of color.
Remarks by President Biden Before Economic Briefing with Treasury Secretary YellenEdit
- All of those empty storefronts aren’t just shattered dreams, they’re warning lights that are going off and state and local budgets that are being stretched because of the lack of tax revenue.
- [S]ome of last month’s job growth is a result of the December relief package. But without a rescue plan, these gains are going to slow. We can’t afford one step forward and two steps backwards. We need to beat the virus, provide essential relief, and build an inclusive recovery.
- There’s no reason someone needs a weapon of war with 100 rounds, 100 bullets, that can be fired from that weapon. Nobody needs that, nobody needs that
- The murder of George Floyd launched a summer of protest we hadn’t seen since the Civil Rights era in the ‘60s — protests that unified people of every race and generation in peace and with purpose
- [W]hen people talk about climate, I think jobs. Within our climate response lies an extraordinary engine of job creation and economic opportunity ready to be fired up.
Remarks by President Biden on the Shooting in Boulder, ColoradoEdit
- I just can’t imagine how the families are feeling — the victims whose futures were stolen from them, from their families, from their loved ones who now have to struggle to go on and try to make sense of what’s happened.
- I’m especially honored to share the stage with Brittney, and Jerdan, and Nathan, and Margrit Katherine. I love those barrettes in your hair, man. I tell you what — and look at her; she looks like she’s nineteen years old, sitting there with her — like a little lady with her legs crossed.
- This is not about trust. This is about self-interest and verification of self-interest.
The proof of the pudding is in the eating. We're going to know shortly.
- The Second Amendment, from the day it was passed, limited the type of people who could own a gun and what type of weapon you could own. You couldn’t buy a cannon.
Those who say the blood of lib- — “the blood of patriots,” you know, and all the stuff about how we’re going to have to move against the government.
Well, the tree of liberty is not watered with the blood of patriots.
What’s happened is that there have never been — if you wanted or if you think you need to have weapons to take on the government, you need F-15s and maybe some nuclear weapons.
- The case for these investments is clear. Economists — left, right, and center — independent Wall Street forecasters, they all say that these kinds of public investments mean more jobs, more workers participating in the labor force, higher productivity, and higher growth for our economy over the long run.
- These steps will enhance our productivity — raising wages without raising prices. That won’t increase inflation. It will take the pressure off of inflation, give a boost to our workforce, which leads to lower prices in the years ahead. So, if your primary concern right now is inflation, you should be even more enthusiastic about this plan. And as we promote — as we promote fair competition in our economy through the executive order I mentioned, it will drive down prices even further.
Remarks by President Biden on the Drawdown of U.S. Forces in AfghanistanEdit
- Remarks by President Biden on the Drawdown of U.S. Forces in Afghanistan, as quoted in "Remarks by President Biden on the Drawdown of U.S. Forces in Afghanistan", WhiteHouse.gov (8 July 2021)
- The Afghan troops have 300,000 well-equipped — as well-equipped as any army in the world — and an air force against something like 75,000 Taliban.
- Do I trust the Taliban? No. But I trust the capacity of the Afghan military, who is better trained, better equipped, and more re- — more competent in terms of conducting war.
- And the likelihood there’s going to be one unified government in Afghanistan controlling the whole country is highly unlikely.
- But the likelihood there’s going to be the Taliban overrunning everything and owning the whole country is highly unlikely.
- Keep in mind, as a student of history, as I’m sure you are, never has Afghanistan been a united country, not in all of its history. Not in all of its history.
Remarks by President Biden At Signing of An Executive Order Promoting Competition in the American EconomyEdit
- Remarks by President Biden At Signing of An Executive Order Promoting Competition in the American Economy, as quoted in "Remarks by President Biden At Signing of An Executive Order Promoting Competition in the American Economy", WhiteHouse.gov (9 July 2021)
- Capitalism without competition isn’t capitalism; it’s exploitation.
- We’re now 40 years into the experiment of letting giant corporations accumulate more and more power. And where- — what have we gotten from it? Less growth, weakened investment, fewer small businesses. Too many Americans who feel left behind. Too many people who are poorer than their parents.
- Those who have served through the ages have drawn inspiration from the book of Isaiah, when the Lord says: "Who shall I send, who shall go for us?" American military has been answering for a long time: "Here I am, Lord send me. Here I am, send me." Each one of these women and men of our armed forces are the heirs of that tradition of sacrifice of volunteering to go in harm's way to risk everything — not for glory, not for profit but to defend what we love and the people we love. And I ask that you join me now, in a moment of silence, for all those, in uniform and out; beautiful military and civilians who have given the last full measure of devotion.
- Remarks at new conference after explosions outside the Kabul airport in Afghanistan (26 August 2021) · Full news conference at "Biden Speaks Following Explosions Outside Kabul Airport", NBC News (26 August 2021)
- We’re going to start mid-September, but we’re considering the advice you’ve given that we should start earlier
- Biden Weighs Speeding Up Booster-Shot Timeline by 3 Months (August 27, 2021)
Address on the withdrawal of US troops from AfghanistanEdit
- Last night in Kabul, the United States ended 20 years of war in Afghanistan. The longest war in American history. We completed one of the biggest air lifts in history with more than 120,000 people evacuated to safety. That number is more than double what most experts felt were possible. No nation, no nation has ever done anything like it in all of history, and only United States had the capacity and the will and ability to do it. And we did it today.
The extraordinary success of this mission was due to the incredible skill, bravely and selfless courage of the United States military and our diplomats and intelligence professionals. For weeks, they risked their lives to get American citizens, Afghans who helped us, citizens of our allies and partners and others onboard planes and out of the country. And they did it facing a crush of enormous crowds seeking to leave the country.
They did it knowing ISIS-K terrorists, sworn enemies of the Taliban, were lurking in the midst of those crowds. And still, the women and men of the United States military, our diplomatic corps and intelligence professionals did their job and did it well. Risking their lives, not for professional gains, but to serve others. Not in a mission of war, but in the mission of mercy.
Twenty service members were wounded in the service of this mission, thirteen heroes gave their lives. I was just at Dover Air Force Base for the dignified transfer. We owe them and their families a debt of gratitude we can never repay, but we should never, ever, ever forget.
- In April, I made a decision to end this war. As part of that decision, we set the date of August 31st for American troops to withdraw. The assumption was that more than 300,000 Afghan National Security Forces that we had trained over the past two decades and equipped would be a strong adversary in their civil wars with the Taliban.
That assumption that the Afghan government would be able to hold on for a period of time beyond military draw down turned out not to be accurate. But, I still instructed our National Security Team to prepare for every eventuality, even that one, and that’s what we did.
So we were ready, when the Afghan Security Forces, after two decades of fighting for their country and losing thousands of their own, did not hold on as long as anyone expected. We were ready when they and the people of Afghanistan watched their own government collapse and the president flee amid the corruption of malfeasance, handing over the country to their enemy, the Taliban, and significantly increasing the risk to us personnel and our allies.
As a result, to safely extract American citizens before August 31st, as well as embassy personnel, allies, and partners, and those Afghans who had worked with us and fought alongside of us for 20 years, I had authorized 6,000 troops, American troops to Kabul to help secure the airport.
As General McKenzie said, this is the way the mission was designed. It was designed to operate under severe stress and attack and that’s what it did. Since March, we reached out 19 times to Americans in Afghanistan with multiple warnings and offers to help them leave Afghanistan. All the way back as far as March.
After we started the evacuation 17 days ago, we did initial outreach and analysis and identified around 5,000 Americans who had decided earlier to stay in Afghanistan but now wanted to leave. Our operation Allie Rescue ended up getting more than 5,500 Americans out.
- The Taliban has made public commitments broadcast on television and radio across Afghanistan on safe passage for anyone wanting to leave, including those who worked alongside Americans. We don’t take them by their word alone, but by their actions. And we have leverage to make sure those commitments are met.
- Let me be clear, leaving August the 31st is not due to an arbitrary deadline. It was designed to save American lives. My predecessor, the Former President, signed an agreement with the Taliban to remove US troops by May the first, just months after I was inaugurated. It included no requirement that the Taliban work out a cooperative governing arrangement with the Afghan government. But it did authorize the release of 5,000 prisoners last year, including some of the Taliban’s top war commanders among those who just took control of Afghanistan.
By the time I came to office the Taliban was in it’s strongest military position since 2001, controlling or contesting nearly half of the country. The previous administration’s agreement said that if we stuck to the May 1st deadline that they had signed on to leave by, the Taliban wouldn’t attack any American forces. But if we stayed, all bets were off.
So we were left with a simple decision, either through on the commitment made by the last administration and leave Afghanistan, or say we weren’t leaving and commit another tens of thousands more troops going back to war. That was the choice, the real choice between leaving or escalating. I was not going to extend this forever war and I was not extending a forever exit.
- The decision to end the military lift operation at that Kabul airport was based on the unanimous recommendation of my civilian and military advisors. The Secretary of State, the Secretary of Defense, the Chairman of the Joint chiefs of Staff and all the Service chiefs and the commanders in the field, their recommendation was that the safest way to secure the passage of the remaining Americans and others out of the country was to continue with 6,000 troops on the ground in harm’s way in Kabul, but rather to get them out through non-military means.
In the 17 days that we operated in Kabul, after the Taliban seized power, we engage in an around the clock effort to provide every American the opportunity to leave. Our State Department was working 24/7 contacting and talking, and in some cases walking Americans into the airport. Again, more than 5,500 Americans were airlifted out. And for those who remain, we will make arrangements to get them out if they so choose.
As for the Afghans, we and our partners have airlifted 100,000 of them, no country in history has done more to airlift out the residents of another country than we have done. We will continue to work to help more people leave the country who are at risk. We’re far from done.
- For now, I urge all Americans to join me in grateful prayer for our troops and diplomats and intelligence officers who carried out this mission of mercy in Kabul at a tremendous risk with such unparalleled results. An air-lift that evacuated tens of thousands. To a network of volunteers and veterans who helped identify those needing evacuation, guide them to the airport and provided them for their support along the way. We’re going to continue to need their help. We need your help and I’m looking forward to meeting with you. And to everyone who is now offering or who will offer to welcome Afghan allies to their homes around the world, including in America, we thank you.
- I take responsibility for the decision. Now some say we should have started mass evacuation sooner and, "Couldn’t this have been done in a more orderly manner?" I respectfully disagree. Imagine if we’d begun evacuations in June or July, bringing in thousands of American troops and evacuated more than 120,000 people in the middle of a civil war. There still would have been a rush to the airport, a breakdown in confidence and control of the government, and it still would have been a very difficult and dangerous mission.
The bottom line is there is no evacuation from the end of a war that you can run without the kinds of complexities, challenge and threats we faced. None. There are those who would say we should have stayed indefinitely, for years on end. They ask, "Why don’t we just keep doing what we were doing? Why do we have to change anything?" The fact is, everything had changed.
- My predecessor had made a deal with the Taliban. When I came into office, we faced a deadline, May one. The Taliban onslaught was coming, we faced one of two choices. Follow the agreement of the previous administration, or extend to have more time for people to get out. Or send in thousands of more troops and escalate the war.
To those asking for a third decade of war in Afghanistan I ask, "What is of vital national interest?" In my view, we only have one. To make sure Afghanistan can never be used again to launch an attack on our homeland. Remember why we went to Afghanistan in the first place, because we were attacked by Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda on September 11th, 2001, and they were based in Afghanistan.
We delivered justice to bin Laden on May 2nd, 2011 over a decade ago. Al-Qaeda was decimated. I respectfully suggest you ask yourself this question, "If we’ve been attacked on September 11th, 2001 from Yemen, instead of Afghanistan, would we have ever gone to war in Afghanistan, even though the Taliban controlled Afghanistan in the year 2001?" I believe the honest answer is no. That’s because we had no vital interest in Afghanistan other than to prevent an attack on America’s homeland and our friends, and that’s true today.
- We succeeded in what we set out to do in Afghanistan over a decade ago, then we stayed for another decade. It was time to end this war. This is a new world. The terror threat has metastasized across the world, well beyond Afghanistan. We face threats from al-Shabab in Somalia, al-Qaeda affiliates in Syria and the Arabian Peninsula, and ISIS attempting to create a caliphate in Syria and Iraq and establishing affiliates across Africa and Asia.
The fundamental obligation of a president, in my opinion, is to defend and protect America. Not against threats of 2001, but against the threats of 2021 and tomorrow. That is the guiding principle behind my decisions about Afghanistan. I simply do not believe that the safety and security of America is enhanced by continuing to deploy thousands of American troops and spending billions of dollars a year in Afghanistan. But I also know that the threat from terrorism continues in its pernicious and evil nature. But it’s changed, expanded to other countries. Our strategy has to change too.
- We will maintain the fight against terrorism in Afghanistan and other countries. We just don’t need to fight a ground war to do it. We have what’s called Over The Horizon capabilities, which means we can strike terrorists and targets without American boots on the ground, or very few if needed. We’ve shown that capacity just in the last week. We struck ISIS-K remotely, days after they murdered 13 of our service members and dozens of innocent Afghans. And to ISIS-K, we are not done with you yet.
- As Commander in Chief I firmly believe the best path to guard our safety and our security lies in a tough, unforgiving, targeted, precise strategy that goes after terror where it is today, not where it was two decades ago. That’s what’s in our national interest.
Here’s a critical thing to understand, the world is changing. We’re engaged in a serious competition with China. We’re dealing with the challenges on multiple fronts with Russia. We’re confronted with cyber attacks and nuclear proliferation. We have to shore up America’s competitiveness to meet these new challenges in the competition for the 21st century. We can do both, fight terrorism and take on new threats that are here now, and will continue to be here in the future. And there’s nothing China or Russia would rather have, would want more in this competition than the United States to be bogged down another decade in Afghanistan.
As we turn the page on the foreign policy that has guided our nation in the last two decades, we’ve got to learn from our mistakes. To me there are two that are paramount. First, we must set missions with clear, achievable goals. Not ones we’ll never reach. And second, I want to stay clearly focused on the fundamental national security interest of the United States of America.
- This decision about Afghanistan is not just about Afghanistan. It’s about ending an era of major military operations to remake other countries. We saw a mission of counter-terrorism in Afghanistan, getting the terrorist and stopping attacks, morph into a counterinsurgency, nation building, trying to create a democratic cohesive and United Afghanistan. Something that has never been done over many centuries of Afghan’s history.
Moving on from that mindset and those kinds of large scale troop deployments will make us stronger and more effective and safer at home. And for anyone who gets the wrong idea, let me say clearly, to those who wish America harm, to those engage in terrorism against us our allies know this, the United States will never rest. We will not forgive, will not forget. We’ll hunt you down to the ends of the earth and you will pay the ultimate price.
- Let me be clear, we’ll continue to support the Afghan people through diplomacy, international influence and humanitarian aid. We’ll continue to push for regional diplomacy engagement to prevent violence and instability. We’ll continue to speak out for the basic rights of the Afghan people, especially women and girls. As we speak out for women and girls all around the globe.
And I’ve been clear that human rights will be the center of our foreign policy, but the way to do that is not through endless military deployments, but through diplomacy, economic tools and rallying the rest of the world for support.
- My fellow Americans, the war in Afghanistan is now over. I’m the fourth president who has faced the issue of whether and when to end this war. When I was running for president, I made a commitment to the American people that I would end this war. Today, I’ve honored that commitment. It was time to be honest with the American people again.
We no longer had a clear purpose and an open-ended mission in Afghanistan. After 20 years of war in Afghanistan, I refuse to send another generation of America’s sons and daughters to fight a war that should have ended long ago.
- I refused to open another decade of warfare in Afghanistan.
We’ve been a nation too long at war. If you’re 20 years old today, you’ve never known an America at peace. So when I hear that we could have, should have continued the so-called "low grade effort" in Afghanistan, at low risk to our service members, at low costs I don’t think enough people understand how much we’ve asked of the 1% of this country who put that uniform on. Willing to put their lives on the line in defense of our nation.
- There is nothing low grade or low risk or low cost about any war. It’s time to end the war in Afghanistan. As we close 20 years of war and strife and pain and sacrifice, it’s time to look at the future, not the past. To a future that’s safer, to a future that’s more secure. To a future the honors those who served and all those who gave what President Lincoln called, "Their last full measure of devotion."
I give you my word, with all of my heart, I believe this is the right decision, a wise decision and the best decision for America. Thank you. Thank you, and may God bless you all. And may God protect our troops.
- Today, Texas law SB 8 went into effect. This extreme Texas law blatantly violates the constitutional right established under Roe v. Wade and upheld as precedent for nearly half a century
- My administration is deeply committed to the constitutional right established in Roe v. Wade nearly five decades ago and will protect and defend that right
- Look, I don’t want to punish anyone’s success, but the wealthy have been getting a free ride at the expense of the middle class for too long.
- I intend to pass one of the biggest middle class tax cuts ever — paid for by making those at the top pay their fair share.
- It’s my honor to speak to you for the first time as President of the United States.
- We’ve lost so much to this devastating — this devastating pandemic that continues to claim lives around the world and impact so much on our existence.
- We’re mourning more than 4.5 million people — people of every nation from every background.
- I give you my word as a Biden: If you make under $400,000 a year, I’ll never raise your taxes one cent
- But, I’m going to make those at the top start to pay their share in taxes
- It’s only fair
- We're going to get this done. It doesn't matter when. It doesn't matter whether it's in six minutes, six days, or six weeks.
- 1 October 2021
- Turn on the news and every conversation is a confrontation. Every disagreement is a crisis. But when you take a step back and look at what’s happening, we’re actually making real progress. Maybe it doesn’t seem fast enough
- At least 55 corporations in America didn't pay a single penny in federal income tax last year. That’s got to change—and my Build Back Better Agenda will get it done.
Remarks at the Martin Luther King, Jr. MemorialEdit
- Remarks by President Biden at the 10th Anniversary Celebration of the Dedication of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Memorial (21 October 2021)
- In our nation, we now face an inflection point in the battle, literally, for the soul of America. And it’s up to us, together, to choose who we want to be and what we want to be.
I know — I know the progress does not come fast enough. It never has. And the process of governing is frustrating and sometimes dispiriting. But I also know what’s possible if we keep the pressure up, if we never give up, if we keep the faith.
- In our time, it’s about recognizing that for much too long we’ve allowed a narrowed and cramped view of the promise of America — a view that America is a zero-sum game, particularly of the recent past. “If you succeed, I fail.” “If you get ahead, I fall behind.” And maybe worst of all, “If I can hold you down, I lift myself up.”
Instead of what it should be — and it’s just self-evident — “If you do well, we all do well.” That’s keeping the promise of America.
- I’ve never seen a time when working folks did well that the wealthy didn’t do very well.
Look, it’s the core of our administration’s economic vision, and it’s a fundamental paradigm shift for this nation. For the first time in a couple generations, we’re going to be investing in working families — putting them first and helping them get ahead, rather than the wealthy and the biggest and most powerful people out there.
- To make real the full promise of America, we have to protect that fundamental right: the right to vote — the sacred right to vote. You know, it’s democracy’s threshold of liberty. With it, anything is possible. Without it, nothing is.
Today, the right to vote and the rule of law are under unrelenting assault from Republican governors, attorneys general, secretaries of state, state legislators. And they’re following my predecessor — the last President — into a deep, deep black hole and abyss.
- Some state legislatures want to make it harder for you to vote. And if you do vote, they want to be able to tell you whether or not your vote counts. That’s not happened before.
They want the ability to reject the final vote and ignore the will of the people if their preferred candidate — Black or white or Asian or Latino, doesn’t matter — if that — if their candidate doesn’t win.
And they’re targeting not just voters of color, as I said, but every voter who doesn’t vote the way they want.
I have to admit to you, having been as senator in my whole of 36-year career involved in — I worked with a lot of folks out here on civil rights issues — I thought, “Man, you can’t turn this back.” I bet you could defeat hate. What if we could actually defeat hate?
But the most un-American thing that any of us can imagine — the most undemocratic and the most unpatriotic — and yet, sadly, not unprecedented. Time and again, we’ve witnessed threats to the right to vote in free and fair elections come to fruition. Each time, we fought back. And we’ve got to continue to fight back today.
- The U.S. Department of Justice has doubled the voting rights enforcement staff.
We got a long way to go though. It’s using authorities to challenge the onslaught of state laws undermining voting rights, whether in old or new ways.
It’s something like 20 percent of the Re- — or half the Republicans — the registered Republicans: I am not your President; Donald Trump is still your President. As we Catholics say, "Oh, my God."
- I know the moment we’re in; you know the moment we are in. I know the stakes; you know the stakes. This is far from over.
And finally, we’re confronting the stains of what remains — the deep stain on the soul of the nation: hate and white supremacy [...] that hate never goes away. It never – I thought — in all of the years I’ve been involved, I thought once we got through it, it would go away. But it doesn’t; it only hides. It only hides until some seeming-legitimate person breathes some oxygen under the rocks where they’re hiding and gives it some breath.
- I believe the American people — the vast majority — are with us. I think they see much more clearly what you’ve all been fighting for your whole lives now. It’s in stark relief.
The bad news: We had a President who appealed to the prejudice. The good news is that he took the — he ripped the Band-Aid off, made it absolutely clear what’s at stake. And I think the American people will follow us.
But guess what? Whether they will or not, we have no choice. We have to continue to fight.
God bless you all. May God protect our troops.
- He will vote for this for this if we have in this proposal what he anticipated looking at the fine print .... I believe that Joe will be there
UN Climate Conference in Scotland, UKEdit
- Excerpts from Remarks by President Biden at the COP26 Leaders Statement at whitehouse.gov (November 1, 2021)
- Climate change is already . . . costing our nations trillions of dollars [and] we know that none of us can escape the worst that’s yet to come if we fail to seize this moment.
- But . . . within the growing catastrophe, I believe there’s an incredible opportunity . . . . We have the ability to invest in ourselves and build an equitable clean-energy future and in the process create millions of good-paying jobs [while we] create an environment that raises the standard of living around the world.
- When I talk to the American people about climate change, I tell them it’s about jobs. It’s about workers [and the] communities that will revitalize themselves around new industries and opportunities.
- So, let’s get to work.
- We are looking at a winter of severe illness and death [for the unvaccinated]
- Look, there is no federal solution. This gets solved at a state level.
Remarks to Mark One Year Since The January 6th Deadly Assault On The U.S. CapitolEdit
- Remarks By President Biden To Mark One Year Since The January 6th Deadly Assault On The U.S. Capitol (6 January 2021) · CNN video
- To state the obvious, one year ago today, in this sacred place, democracy was attacked — simply attacked. The will of the people was under assault. The Constitution — our Constitution — faced the gravest of threats.
Outnumbered and in the face of a brutal attack, the Capitol Police, the D.C. Metropolitan Police Department, the National Guard, and other brave law enforcement officials saved the rule of law.
Our democracy held. We the people endured. And we the people prevailed.
For the first time in our history, a president had not just lost an election, he tried to prevent the peaceful transfer of power as a violent mob breached the Capitol.
But they failed. They failed.
And on this day of remembrance, we must make sure that such an attack never, never happens again.
- We’ve all heard the police officers who were there that day testify to what happened. One officer called it, quote, a ... "medieval" battle, and that he was more afraid that day than he was fighting the war in Iraq.
They’ve repeatedly asked since that day: How dare anyone — anyone — diminish, belittle, or deny the hell they were put through?
We saw it with our own eyes. Rioters menaced these halls, threatening the life of the Speaker of the House, literally erecting gallows to hang the Vice President of the United States of America.
But what did we not see?
We didn’t see a former president, who had just rallied the mob to attack — sitting in the private dining room off the Oval Office in the White House, watching it all on television and doing nothing for hours as police were assaulted, lives at risk, and the nation’s capital under siege.
This wasn’t a group of tourists. This was an armed insurrection.
They weren’t looking to uphold the will of the people. They were looking to deny the will of the people.
They ... weren’t looking to uphold a free and fair election. They were looking to overturn one.
They weren’t looking to save the cause of America. They were looking to subvert the Constitution.
This isn’t about being bogged down in the past. This is about making sure the past isn’t buried.
That’s the only way forward. That’s what great nations do. They don’t bury the truth, they face up to it. Sounds like hyperbole, but that’s the truth: They face up to it.
We are a great nation.
- My fellow Americans, in life, there’s truth and, tragically, there are lies — lies conceived and spread for profit and power.
We must be absolutely clear about what is true and what is a lie.
And here is the truth: The former president of the United States of America has created and spread a web of lies about the 2020 election. He’s done so because he values power over principle, because he sees his own interests as more important than his country’s interests and America’s interests, and because his bruised ego matters more to him than our democracy or our Constitution.
He can’t accept he lost, even though that’s what 93 United States senators, his own Attorney General, his own Vice President, governors and state officials in every battleground state have all said: He lost.
That’s what 81 million of you did as you voted for a new way forward.
He has done what no president in American history — the history of this country — has ever, ever done: He refused to accept the results of an election and the will of the American people.
- While some courageous men and women in the Republican Party are standing against it, trying to uphold the principles of that party, too many others are transforming that party into something else. They seem no longer to want to be the party — the party of Lincoln, Eisenhower, Reagan, the Bushes.
But whatever my other disagreements are with Republicans who support the rule of law and not the rule of a single man, I will always seek to work together with them to find shared solutions where possible. Because if we have a shared belief in democracy, then anything is possible — anything.
And so, at this moment, we must decide: What kind of nation are we going to be?
Are we going to be a nation that accepts political violence as a norm?
Are we going to be a nation where we allow partisan election officials to overturn the legally expressed will of the people?
Are we going to be a nation that lives not by the light of the truth but in the shadow of lies?
We cannot allow ourselves to be that kind of nation. The way forward is to recognize the truth and to live by it.
- The Big Lie being told by the former president and many Republicans who fear his wrath is that the insurrection in this country actually took place on Election Day — November 3rd, 2020.
Think about that. Is that what you thought? Is that what you thought when you voted that day? Taking part in an insurrection? Is that what you thought you were doing? Or did you think you were carrying out your highest duty as a citizen and voting?
The former president and his supporters are trying to rewrite history. They want you to see Election Day as the day of insurrection and the riot that took place here on January 6th as the true expression of the will of the people.
Can you think of a more twisted way to look at this country — to look at America? I cannot.
Here’s the truth: The election of 2020 was the greatest demonstration of democracy in the history of this country.
More of you voted in that election than have ever voted in all of American history. Over 150 million Americans went to the polls and voted that day in a pandemic — some at grea- — great risk to their lives. They should be applauded, not attacked.
Right now, in state after state, new laws are being written — not to protect the vote, but to deny it; not only to suppress the vote, but to subvert it; not to strengthen or protect our democracy, but because the former president lost.
Instead of looking at the election results from 2020 and saying they need new ideas or better ideas to win more votes, the former president and his supporters have decided the only way for them to win is to suppress your vote and subvert our elections.
It’s wrong. It’s undemocratic. And frankly, it’s un-American.
- You can’t love your country only when you win.
You can’t obey the law only when it’s convenient.
You can’t be patriotic when you embrace and enable lies.
Those who stormed this Capitol and those who instigated and incited and those who called on them to do so held a dagger at the throat of America — at American democracy.
They didn’t come here out of patriotism or principle. They came here in rage — not in service of America, but rather in service of one man.
Those who incited the mob — the real plotters — who were desperate to deny the certification of the election and defy the will of the voters.
But their plot was foiled. Congressmen — Democrats and Republicans — stayed. Senators, representatives, staff — they finished their work the Constitution demanded. They honored their oath to defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic.
Look, folks, now it’s up to all of us — to “We the People” — to stand for the rule of law, to preserve the flame of democracy, to keep the promise of America alive.
That promise is at risk, targeted by the forces that value brute strength over the sanctity of democracy, fear over hope, personal gain over public good.
Make no mistake about it: We’re living at an inflection point in history.
Both at home and abroad, we’re engaged anew in a struggle between democracy and autocracy, between the aspirations of the many and the greed of the few, between the people’s right of self-determination and ... the self-seeking autocrat.
- From China to Russia and beyond, they’re betting that democracy’s days are numbered. They’ve actually told me democracy is too slow, too bogged down by division to succeed in today’s rapidly changing, complicated world.
And they’re betting — they’re betting America will become more like them and less like us. They’re betting that America is a place for the autocrat, the dictator, the strongman.
I do not believe that. That is not who we are. That is not who we have ever been. And that is not who we should ever, ever be.
- Our Founding Fathers, as imperfect as they were, set in motion an experiment that changed the world — literally changed the world.
Here in America, the people would rule, power would be transferred peacefully — never at the tip of a spear or the barrel of a gun.
And they committed to paper an idea that ... they couldn’t live up to but an idea that couldn’t be constrained: Yes, in America all people are created equal.
We reject the view that if you succeed, I fail; if you get ahead, I fall behind; if I hold you down, I somehow lift myself up.
The former President, who lies about this election, and the mob that attacked this Capitol could not be further away from the core American values.
They want to rule or they will ruin — ruin what our country fought for at Lexington and Concord; at Gettysburg; at Omaha Beach; Seneca Falls; Selma, Alabama. What — and what we were fighting for: the right to vote, the right to govern ourselves, the right to determine our own destiny.
And with rights come responsibilities: the responsibility to see each other as neighbors — maybe we disagree with that neighbor, but they’re not an adversary; the responsibility to accept defeat then get back in the arena and try again the next time to make your case; the responsibility to see that America is an idea — an idea that requires vigilant stewardship.
As we stand here today — one year since January 6th, 2021 — the lies that drove the anger and madness we saw in this place, they have not abated.
So, we have to be firm, resolute, and unyielding in our defense of the right to vote and to have that vote counted.
- Don’t kid yourself: The pain and scars from that day run deep.
I said it many times and it’s no more true or real than when we think about the events of January 6th: We are in a battle for the soul of America. A battle that, by the grace of God and the goodness and gracious — and greatness of this nation, we will win.
Believe me, I know how difficult democracy is. And I’m crystal clear about the threats America faces. But I also know that our darkest days can lead to light and hope.
- I did not seek this fight brought to this Capitol one year ago today, but I will not shrink from it either.
I will stand in this breach. I will defend this nation. And I will allow no one to place a dagger at the throat of our democracy.
We will make sure the will of the people is heard; that the ballot prevails, not violence; that authority in this nation will always be peacefully transferred.
I believe the power of the presidency and the purpose is to unite this nation, not divide it; to lift us up, not tear us apart; to be about us — about us, not about “me.”
Deep in the heart of America burns a flame lit almost 250 years ago — of liberty, freedom, and equality.
This is not a land of kings or dictators or autocrats. We’re a nation of laws; of order, not chaos; of peace, not violence.
Here in America, the people rule through the ballot, and their will prevails.
So, let us remember: Together, we’re one nation, under God, indivisible; that today, tomorrow, and forever, at our best, we are the United States of America.
God bless you all. May God protect our troops. And may God bless those who stand watch over our democracy.
- For too long, our government, our courts haven’t looked like America. And I believe it’s time that we have a [Supreme] Court that reflects the full talents and greatness of our nation with a nominee of extraordinary qualifications . . . . I’ve admired [the] traits of pragmatism, historical perspective, wisdom, character in the jurists nominated by [prior] presidents . . . . And today, I’m pleased to introduce [Ketanji Brown Jackson] to the American people [as] a candidate who continues in this great tradition.
- The idea that we’re going to send in offensive equipment and have planes and tanks and trains going in with American pilots and American crews, just understand ... that’s called World War III, okay? Let’s get it straight here, guys. We will not fight the third world war in Ukraine.
State of the Union AddressEdit
- Last year COVID-19 kept us apart. This year we are finally together again.
Tonight, we meet as Democrats Republicans and Independents. But most importantly as Americans.
With a duty to one another to the American people to the Constitution.
And with an unwavering resolve that freedom will always triumph over tyranny.
- Six days ago, Russia’s Vladimir Putin sought to shake the foundations of the free world thinking he could make it bend to his menacing ways. But he badly miscalculated.
He thought he could roll into Ukraine and the world would roll over. Instead he met a wall of strength he never imagined.
He met the Ukrainian people.
From President Zelenskyy to every Ukrainian, their fearlessness, their courage, their determination, inspires the world.
Groups of citizens blocking tanks with their bodies. Everyone from students to retirees teachers turned soldiers defending their homeland.
- Imagine what it’s like to look at your child who needs insulin and have no idea how you’re going to pay for it. What it does to your dignity, your ability to look your child in the eye, to be the parent you expect to be.
Remarks to members of the 82nd Airborne Division in PolandEdit
- Remarks by President Biden During Visit with Service Members of the 82nd Airborne Division (25 March 2022)
- First of all, thank you. You represent 1 percent of the American people. None of you have to be here. You all decided to be here for your country. Every one of you volunteered. Every single one of you stepped up. And the rest of the 99 percent of the rest of the country, including me, owes you and owes you big, number one.
Number two, you know, we’re a unique country in many ways. And we’re the only country — the only country in the world not based — organized based on geography or ethnicity or religion or race or anything else; we’re based on an idea. Literally the only country in the world based on an idea that we hold these truths to be self-evident, that all women and men are created equal, endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights.
Sounds corny, but it’s the truth of who we are. We’ve never lived up to it, but we never walked away from it. And the rest of the world looks to us. Because, you know, we not only lead by the example of our power, but by the power of our example. And your generation combines both.
- The rest of the world looks at you and sees who you are. They see you are a multi-ethnic group of Americans that are, in fact, together and united into one so — resolve: to defend your country and to help those who need help. That’s why you’re here.
- The last 10 years, there have been fewer democracies that have been formed than we’ve lost in the world.
So this is — what you’re engaged in is much more than just whether or not you can alleviate the pain and suffering of the people of Ukraine.
We’re in a new phase — your generation. We’re at an inflection point. About every four or five generations, there comes along a change — a fundamental change takes place. The world ain’t going to be the same — not because of Ukraine, but — not going to be the same 10, 15 years from now in terms of our organizational structures.
So the question is: Who is going to prevail? Are democracies going to prevail ... and the values we share? Or are autocracies going to prevail? And that’s really what’s at stake.
So what you’re doing is consequential — really consequential.
- The fact of the matter is that you are the finest — this is not hyperbole — you are the finest fighting force in the history of the world. Let me say it again: the finest fighting force in the history of the world.
- I came for one simple, basic reason — not a joke: to say thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you for your service. Thank you for who you are. And thank you for what you’re doing.
And as my grandfather would say every time I walked out of his house — he’d yell at me, “Joey” — in Scranton — he said, “Keep the faith.” And my grandmother — my grandmother would yell, all kidding aside — this is serious — she’d yell, “No, spread it.” You’re spreading the faith.
Thank you, thank you, thank you. May God bless you all and keep you safe. May God protect our troops.
United Efforts of the Free World to Support the People of UkraineEdit
- Remarks by President Biden on the United Efforts of the Free World to Support the People of Ukraine (26 March 2022)
- Over the last 30 years, the forces of autocracy have revived all across the globe. Its hallmarks are familiar ones: contempt for the rule of law, contempt for democratic freedom, contempt for the truth itself.
- Over the long term, as a matter of economic security and national security and for the survivability of the planet, we all need to move as quickly as possible to clean, renewable energy. And we’ll work together to help get that done so that the days of any nation being subject to the whims of a tyrant for its energy needs are over. They must end. They must end.
And second, we have to fight the corruption coming from the Kremlin to give the Russian people a fair chance.
And finally, and most urgently, we maintain absolute unity — we must — among the world’s democracies.
It’s not enough to speak with rhetorical flourish, of ennobling words of democracy, of freedom, equality, and liberty. All of us, including here in Poland, must do the hard work of democracy each and every day. My country as well.
That’s why — that’s why I came to Europe again this week with a clear and determined message for NATO, for the G7, for the European Union, for all freedom-loving nations: We must commit now to be in this fight for the long haul. We must remain unified today and tomorrow and the day after and for the years and decades to come.
It will not be easy. There will be costs. But it’s a price we have to pay. Because the darkness that drives autocracy is ultimately no match for the flame of liberty that lights the souls of free people everywhere.
- It's not enough to speak with rhetorical flourish, of ennobling words of democracy, of freedom, equality, and liberty. All of us, including here in Poland, must do the hard work of democracy each and every day. My country as well. That's why—[applause]. That's why I came to Europe again this week with a clear and determined message for NATO, for the G-7, for the European Union, for all freedom-loving nations: We must commit now to be in this fight for the long haul. We must remain unified today and tomorrow and the day after and for the years and decades to come. It will not be easy. There will be costs. But it's a price we have to pay. Because the darkness that drives autocracy is ultimately no match for the flame of liberty that lights the souls of free people everywhere.
- Time and again, history shows that it's from the darkest moments that the greatest progress follows. And history shows, this is the task of our time, the task of this generation. Let's remember: The hammer blow that brought down the Berlin Wall, the might that lifted the Iron Curtain were not the words of a single leader, it was the people of Europe who, for decades, fought to free themselves.
- A dictator bent on rebuilding an empire will never erase a people’s love for liberty. Brutality will never grind down their will to be free. Ukraine will never be a victory for Russia — for free people refuse to live in a world of hopelessness and darkness.
We will have a different future — a brighter future rooted in democracy and principle, hope and light, of decency and dignity, of freedom and possibilities.
For God’s sake, this man cannot remain in power.
God bless you all. And may God defend our freedom.
And may God protect our troops.
- Despite the disturbing rhetoric coming out of the Kremlin, the facts are plain for everybody to see. We’re not attacking Russia; we’re helping Ukraine defend itself against Russian aggression.
And just as Putin chose to launch this brutal invasion, he could make the choice to end this brutal invasion.
Russia is the aggressor. No if, ands, or buts about it. Russia is the aggressor. And the world must and will hold Russia accountable.
- America must offer meaningful opportunities for redemption and rehabilitation to empower those who have been incarcerated to become productive, law-abiding, members of society, and reduce crime and make our communities safer.
- We learned a horrible lesson after Vietnam, when the harmful effects of exposure to Agent Orange sometimes took years to manifest, and too many veterans were left unable to access the care they needed. I refuse to repeat that mistake when it comes to the veterans of our wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
- I have always believed that for America to succeed, rural America must succeed.
- Look, folks, I come from Scranton, Pennsylvania, where I was raised. The reason I got to Delaware is coal died. My dad was not in the coal mines; he was in sales — but the whole economy died. And, you know, you can understand why in places like West Virginia and Southeastern Pennsylvania, why people were worried about doing away with coal. You know, but it’s their jobs; they wonder what they’re going to do.
- My name is Joe Biden. I am Jill’s husband.
- This week, my administration released new information that contains that we’re on track to cut the federal deficit by another — another $1.5 trillion by the end of this fiscal year — the biggest decline in a single year ever in American history. And the biggest decline on top of us having a $350 billion drop in the deficit last year, my first year as President.
- I want every American to know that I am taking inflation very seriously and it is my top domestic priority
- If the Court overturns Roe, it will fall on our nation’s elected officials at all levels of government to protect a woman’s right to choose. And it will fall on voters to elect pro-choice officials this November.
- As quoted on Twitter
- The idea that we're going to make a judgment that is going to say that no one can make the judgment to choose to abort a child, based on a decision by the Supreme Court, I think goes way overboard
- The actions and policies of certain former members of the Government of Yemen and others in threatening Yemen’s peace, security, and stability continue to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States.
- The regime’s brutality and repression of the Syrian people, who have called for freedom and a representative government, not only endangers the Syrian people themselves, but also generates instability throughout the region.
- I urge [the] Congress to move promptly on the COVID funding bill. This virus knows no borders; we must continue to save lives here at home and around the world.
- Quantum computers, one of the many promising applications of QIS, are not a replacement to traditional computers. Rather, they are a fundamentally different kind of computer, with the ability to analyze information in ways that traditional computers cannot.
- I am so tired of acronyms in Washington. I can’t stand it. I cannot stand it. But I’m going to have to learn, aren’t I?
- I’ve been to every major fire but two this year, because FEMA is working again. We show up; we don’t wait. We don’t have to wonder.
- Our policy toward Taiwan has not changed at all. We remain committed to supporting peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait and ensuring that there is no unilateral change to the status quo.
- It is time that we acknowledge the legacy of systemic racism in our criminal justice system and work together to eliminate the racial disparities that endure to this day. Doing so serves all Americans.
- We must work together to create an America where everyone feels safe in their community, where children feel safe in their schools. And, of course, that responsibility that we collectively have to ensure that all people feel safe in their community is what brings us together today.
- Every day, Ukrainians pay with their lives, and they fight along — and the atrocities that the Russians are engaging in are just beyond the pale. And the cost of the fight is not cheap, but caving to aggression is even more costly. That’s why we’re staying in this.
- The bottom line is the deficit went up every year under my predecessor, before the pandemic and during the pandemic. And it’s gone down both years since I’ve been here — period.
- We must provide people who are incarcerated with meaningful opportunities for rehabilitation and the tools and support they need to transition successfully back to society.
Individuals who have been involved in the criminal justice system face many barriers in transitioning back into society, including limited access to housing, public benefits, health care, trauma-informed services and support, education, nutrition, employment and occupational licensing, credit, the ballot, and other critical opportunities. Lowering barriers to reentry is essential to reducing recidivism and reducing crime. Finally, no one should be required to serve an excessive prison sentence.
When the Congress passed the First Step Act of 2018 (Public Law 115-391), it sought to relieve people from unfair and unduly harsh sentences, including those driven by harsh mandatory minimums and the unjust sentencing disparity between crack and powder cocaine offenses. My Administration will fully implement the First Step Act, including by supporting sentencing reductions in appropriate cases and by allowing eligible incarcerated people to participate in recidivism reduction programming and earn time credits.
Remarks By President Biden on the Affordable Connectivity ProgramEdit
- That old saying, “All that needs to be said has already been said, but I’m going to say it again.”
- You know, the need for high-speed Internet is — is a little bit like what used to be probably what my grandfather talked about: needing to have a telephone. It’s pretty consequential. And it’s only going to keep growing, this need. High-speed Internet is not a luxury any longer, it’s a necessity.
- [H]ere in the United States of America, how many times have you seen a mom or a dad drive up to a parking lot outside a McDonald’s and — just so they could get connected to the Internet so their kid could do their homework during the pandemic, literally? It’s just not right. It’s not who we are.
A Proclamation on National Immigrant Heritage Month, 2022Edit
- Hate and fear are being given too much oxygen by those who pretend to love America but do not understand America.
To confront the dangerous ideology of hate requires caring about all people — including our Nation’s immigrants. After all, the fundamental promise of America is that all of us are created equal and deserve to be treated equally throughout our lives. As a Nation, we have never fully lived up to that promise, but we have never walked away from it either.
- The United States is a Nation of immigrants — shaped by the courageous people from around the world who leave their homes, lives, and loved ones to seek refuge and opportunity on our shores. Their sacrifices and entrepreneurial spirit have contributed to the rich tapestry that has defined the character of our country for generations. Since our founding, the very idea of America as a Nation of limitless possibilities has been nurtured and advanced by immigrants.
President Biden Delivers Remarks on Building a Better AmericaEdit
- My dad used to say "A job’s about a lot more than a paycheck, it’s about your dignity, it’s about place in the community." What these guys do is they care about the dignity of the worker, and I see things are really beginning to change. I really believe it. And Senator Portman, since he's not running again, I can say all the nice things about him that I want.
- ...[W]e reduced the deficit by a total of 350 billion dollars, that’s reduced the deficit, last year, and this year, by the end of the fiscal, by October 1st, We will of reduced this year’s deficit by 1 Trillion, 500 Billion dollars. Never in the history of America has that happened before.
- I’m tired of trickle-down-economics, I’ve never seen it really work, but I tell you what, I’m a capitalist, I want to build this economy [from] the bottom up and the middle out, because when that happens everybody does well, the poor have a way up, the middle class do fine, and the wealthy do very very well. [They] never get hurt when that happens.
- That’s no malarkey, That's a fact.
- Joe Biden, t. 20:39
- I’ve spent more time with Xi Jinping, [the] leader of China, than any other world leader has, over seventy six hours, nine of them on a telephone, the rest in person.
- Joe Biden, t. 21:59
- We’re making "Buy America" a reality, not just a slogan.
- Joe Biden, t. 26:14
- Decades ago, the federal government used to invest two percent of our entire GDP in research and development, we’re down to investing less than one percent [of our GDP in research and development]. We were ranked number one in the world in [terms of research and development], [thirty years] ago, now were ranked number nine. China was [ranked] number eight thirty years, now they’re [ranked second], we [got to] up our game. It's a simple proposition, if we do better, everybody's [going to] win.
- Joe Biden, t. 19:19
Remarks Honoring the Lives Lost in Buffalo, New York, and Calling on All Americans to Condemn White SupremacyEdit
- Remarks by President Biden and First Lady Biden Honoring the Lives Lost in Buffalo, New York, and Calling on All Americans to Condemn White Supremacy (17 May 2022)
- What happened here is simple and straightforward: terrorism. Terrorism. Domestic terrorism.
A hate that through the media and politics, the Internet, has radicalized angry, alienated, lost, and isolated individuals into falsely believing that they will be replaced — that’s the word, “replaced” — by the “other” — by people who don’t look like them and who are therefore, in a perverse ideology that they possess and being fed, lesser beings. I and all of you reject the lie. I call on all Americans to reject the lie. And I condemn those who spread the lie for power, political gain, and for profit
- Jill and I bring you this message from deep in our nation’s soul: In America, evil will not win — I promise you. Hate will not prevail. And white supremacy will not have the last word.
- We have now seen too many times the deadly and destructive violence this ideology unleashes. We heard the chants, “You will not replace us,” in Charlottesville, Virginia. I wasn’t going to run, as the Senator knows, again for President. But when I saw those people coming out of the woods — of the fields of — in Virginia, in Charlottesville, carrying torches, shouting “You will not replace us,” accompanied by white supremacists and carrying Nazi banners — that’s when I said, “No.” “No.”
- White supremacy is a poison. It’s a poison — running through — it really is — running through our body politic. And it’s been allowed to fester and grow right in front of our eyes. No more. I mean, no more. We need to say as clearly and forcefully as we can that the ideology of white supremacy has no place in America. None.
- Silence is complicity. It’s complicity. We cannot remain silent.
Our nation’s strength has always come from the idea — it’s going to sound corny, but think about it: What’s the idea of our nation? That we’re all children of God. All life, liberty, our universal goods — gifts of God. We didn’t get it from the government, we got it because we exist, and we’re called upon to defend them.
The venom of the haters and their weapons of war, the violence in the words and deeds that — that stalk our streets, our stores, our schools — this venom, this violence cannot be the story of our time. We cannot allow that to happen.
- Look, I’m not naïve. I know tragedy will come again. It cannot be forever overcome. It cannot be fully understood either. But there are certain things we can do. We can keep assault weapons off our streets. We’ve done it before. I did it when we passed the crime bill last time. And violence went down, shootings went down. You can’t prevent people from being radicalized to violence, but we can address the relentless exploitation of the Internet to recruit and mobilize terrorism. We just need to have the courage to do that, to stand up.
- The American experiment in democracy is in a danger like it hasn’t been in my lifetime. It’s in danger this hour. Hate and fear are being given too much oxygen by those who pretend to love America but who don’t understand America. To confront the ideology of hate requires caring about all people, not making distinctions. Reverend, the Scripture is seeing that we’re all part of the Divine. “Love thy neighbor as thyself.” That’s the America I know, that Jill knows. And most deserve the most — we — look, we are the most multiracial, most dynamic nation in the history of the world. Now is the time for the people of all races, from every background, to speak up as a majority in America and reject white supremacy. These actions we’ve seen in these hate-filled attacks represent the views of a hate-filled minority. We can’t allow them to distort America — the real America. We can’t allow them to destroy the soul of the nation.
Remarks on the School Shooting in Uvalde, Texas (24 May 2022)Edit
- As a nation, we have to ask: When in God’s name are we going to stand up to the gun lobby? When in God’s name will we do what we all know in our gut needs to be done?
- I had hoped, when I became President, I would not have to do this again. Another massacre. Uvalde, Texas. An elementary school. Beautiful, innocent second, third, fourth graders. And how many scores of little children who witnessed what happened see their friends die as if they’re on a battlefield, for God’s sake. They’ll live with it the rest of their lives. There’s a lot we don’t know yet, but there’s a lot we do know.
There are parents who will never see their child again, never have them jump in bed and cuddle with them. Parents who will never be the same.
To lose a child is like having a piece of your soul ripped away. There’s a hollowness in your chest, and you feel like you’re being sucked into it and never going to be able to get out. It’s suffocating. And it’s never quite the same.
- I spent my career as a senator and as Vice President working to pass commonsense gun laws. We can’t and won’t prevent every tragedy. But we know they work and have a positive impact. When we passed the assault weapons ban, mass shootings went down. When the law expired, mass shootings tripled.
The idea that an 18-year-old kid can walk into a gun store and buy two assault weapons is just wrong. What in God’s name do you need an assault weapon for except to kill someone? Deer aren’t running through the forest with Kevlar vests on, for God’s sake. It’s just sick. And the gun manufacturers have spent two decades aggressively marketing assault weapons which make them the most and largest profit.
For God’s sake, we have to have the courage to stand up to the industry.
- Most Americans support commonsense laws — commonsense gun laws. I just got off my trip from Asia, meeting with Asian leaders, and I learned of this while I was on the aircraft. And what struck me on that 17-hour flight — what struck me was these kinds of mass shootings rarely happen anywhere else in the world. Why?
They have mental health problems. They have domestic disputes in other countries. They have people who are lost. But these kinds of mass shootings never happen with the kind of frequency that they happen in America. Why? Why are we willing to live with this carnage? Why do we keep letting this happen? Where in God's name is our backbone — to have the courage to deal with it and stand up to the lobbies?
It's time to turn this pain into action. For every parent, for every citizen in this country, we have to make it clear to every elected official in this country: It's time to act. It's time — for those who obstruct or delay or block the commonsense gun laws, we need to let you know that we will not forget. We can do so much more. We have to do more.
- The people of Ukraine continue to inspire the world with their courage and resolve as they fight bravely to defend their country and their democracy against Russian aggression.
- Why don’t you tell them what Exxon’s profits were this year? This quarter? Exxon made more money than God this year. Exxon, start investing. Start paying your taxes.
- Biden bashes big oil: 'Exxon made more money than God this year' (June 10, 2022)
- I think the Supreme Court has made some terrible decisions
- Putin thought he could break the transatlantic alliance,” the president said. “But he’s getting exactly what he did not want. He wanted the Finlandization of NATO. He got the NATO-ization of Finland." ("Finlandization" is a Cold War term referring to neutrality due to the Soviet Union's influence.)
A Proclamation on Flag Day And National Flag WeekEdit
- Our flag belongs to all Americans, and its red, white, and blue colors are woven into a rich tapestry of different cultures, backgrounds, and beliefs which connects us and honors our shared history.
Old Glory has flown around the world in times of war and in times of peace.
It has traveled to the Moon and to Mars. It has sailed on ships and flown on planes. It waves high above the White House, courthouses, post offices, schools, and homes across the Nation, and also above our embassies and military bases overseas — an enduring beacon of democracy.
- Every day, the American Flag instills pride — reminding us of the ideals upon which our Nation was founded and the values for which we stand.
As we pledge our allegiance to the Star-Spangled Banner, and the legacy it holds in our history, let us continue the work of perfecting our Union so that, together, we can deliver the promise of America for all Americans.
Remarks by President Biden at the Inaugural Ceremony of the Ninth Summit of the AmericasEdit
- Remarks by President Biden at the Inaugural Ceremony of the Ninth Summit of the Americas (June 8, 2022)
- As we meet again today, in a moment when democracy is under assault around the world, let us unite again and renew our conviction that democracy is not only the defining feature of American histories, but the essential ingredient to Americas’ futures.
- And no longer is this a question of what will we do — what will the United States do for the Americas. The question is what we accomplish by working together as true partners with diverse capabilities but equal and mutual respect, recognizing both our individual sovereignty and our shared responsibilities.
- [W]hen we invest in strengthening workers and the middle class, the poor have a ladder up, and those at the top do just fine. That’s how we can increase opportunity and decrease persistent inequity.
- We need to break the cycle where marginalized communities are hit the hardest by disasters and have the fewest resources to recover from crises and prepare for the next one.
- When I hear “climate,” I think jobs — good-paying, high-quality jobs that will help speed our transition to a green economy of the future and unleash sustainable growth; jobs in developing and deploying clean energy; jobs in decarbonizing the economy; jobs in protecting biodiversity of our hemisphere; jobs that will provide dignity of being able to feed your family, give your children a better life, and envision a future of possibilities.
- That’s what this is all about: responding to basic human desires that we share for dignity, for safety, and for security. And when those basics are absent in one place, that’s when people make the desperate decision to seek them elsewhere.
- People everywhere expect their government to help give them just a little bit of breathing room, provide opportunities for work that pays a decent wage, educate children so they can rise as high as their talents can take them, make communities more secure so families feel safe in their homes and individuals know their rights will be respected. That means directing investment to help governments deliver on those responsibilities, including modernize — modernizing multilateral development banks to better address the challenges of today and of the future.
Remarks by Vice President Harris on Corinthian Student Loan ForgivenessEdit
- Students who simply wanted to better their prospects in life and instead found themselves taken advantage of by a scam that took their money and gave them nothing in return except heartache.
- So, it’s one thing to say “there should be accountability,” but when we think about and define “accountability” based on bad actors and bad deeds, part of our system of justice tells us that, yes, there should be serious, swift, and severe consequence, but also we must look to those who were harmed and ask, “Are we doing enough to allow them the ability to recover from that harm?”
Statement by President Joe Biden on the 101st Anniversary of the Tulsa Race MassacreEdit
- We cannot bury pain and trauma forever. As I said in Tulsa, great nations do not hide from their histories. We are a great nation, and by reckoning with and remedying the injustices of the past, America will become greater still.
- Today, we remember the hell that was unleashed that night. This was not a riot, it was a massacre.
As many as 300 Black Americans were killed, and nearly 10,000 were left destitute. Homes, businesses, and churches were burned. A generation of Black wealth was extinguished. In the years that followed, even as Greenwood worked to rebuild, discrimination was systematically embedded in our laws and policies, locking Black residents out of opportunity and ensuring that the attack on Black families and Black wealth persisted across generations.
Remarks by President Biden During Virtual Meeting on Accelerating Infant Formula Production Through Operation Fly FormulaEdit
- Remarks by President Biden During Virtual Meeting on Accelerating Infant Formula Production Through Operation Fly Formula (June 1, 2022)
- Look, as a father and a grandfather — and I’m sure we all feel the same way — I understand how difficult this shortage has been for families all across the country. There is nothing more stressful than the feeling like you can’t get what your child needs — what he or she needs.
- Without Operation Fly Formula, we would have taken three weeks to get this product to the United States. Because of our actions, it took three days. And it’s heeded the request that people had, and it’s headed to American shelves.
President Biden Statement on the UN-Mediated Truce Extension in YemenEdit
- The last two months in Yemen, thanks to the truce brokered in April, have been among the most peaceful periods since this terrible war began seven years ago. Thousands of lives have been saved as fighting receded. For the first time in seven years, Yemenis are able to fly from Sana’a to destinations outside Yemen.
Remarks on Gun Violence in AmericaEdit
- On Memorial Day this past Monday, Jill and I visited Arlington National Cemetery. As we entered those hallowed grounds, we saw rows and rows of crosses among the rows of headstones, with other emblems of belief, honoring those who paid the ultimate price on battlefields around the world.
The day before, we visited Uvalde — Uvalde, Texas. In front of Robb Elementary School, we stood before 21 crosses for 19 third and fourth graders and two teachers. On each cross, a name. And nearby, a photo of each victim that Jill and I reached out to touch. Innocent victims, murdered in a classroom that had been turned into a killing field.
Standing there in that small town, like so many other communities across America, I couldn’t help but think there are too many other schools, too many other everyday places that have become killing fields, battlefields here in America. We stood at such a place just 12 days before, across from a grocery store in Buffalo, New York, memorializing 10 fellow Americans — a spouse, a parent, a grandparent, a sibling — gone forever.
At both places, we spent hours with hundreds of family members who were broken and whose lives will never be the same. And they had one message for all of us: Do something. Just do something. For God’s sake, do something.
- After Columbine, after Sandy Hook, after Charleston, after Orlando, after Las Vegas, after Parkland, nothing has been done.
This time, that can’t be true. This time, we must actually do something.
The issue we face is one of conscience and common sense.
- For so many of you at home, I want to be very clear: This is not about taking away anyone’s guns. It’s ... not about vilifying ... gun owners. In fact, we believe we should be treating responsible gun owners as an example of how every gun owner should behave. I respect the culture and the tradition and the concerns of lawful gun owners.
At the same time, the Second Amendment, like all other rights, is not absolute. ... It was Justice Scalia who wrote, and I quote, “Like most rights, the right...” — Second Amendment — the rights granted by the Second Amendment are “not unlimited.” Not unlimited. It never has been.
There have always been limitations on what weapons you can own in America. For example, machine guns have been federally regulated for nearly 90 years. And this is still a free country.
This isn’t about taking away anyone’s rights. It’s about protecting children. It’s about protecting families. It’s about protecting whole communities. It’s about protecting our freedoms to go to school, to a grocery store, and to a church without being shot and killed.
- According to new data just released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, guns are the number one killer of children in the United States of America. The number one killer. More than car accidents. More than cancer.
Over the last two decades, more school-aged children have died from guns than on-duty police officers and active-duty military combined. Think about that: more kids than on-duty cops killed by guns, more kids than soldiers killed by guns.
For God’s sake, how much more
are we willing to accept? How many more innocent American lives must be taken before we say “enough”? Enough.
- I know that we can’t prevent every tragedy. But here’s what I believe we have to do. Here’s what the overwhelming majority of the American people believe we must do. Here’s what the families in Buffalo and Uvalde, in Texas, told us we must do.
We need to ban assault weapons and high-capacity magazines. And if we can’t ban assault weapons, then we should raise the age to purchase them from 18 to 21. Strengthen background checks. Enact safe storage laws and red-flag laws. Repeal the immunity that protects gun manufacturers from liability. Address the mental health crisis deepening the trauma of gun violence and as a consequence of that violence.
These are rational, commonsense measures. And here’s what it all means. It all means this: We should reinstate the assault weapons ban and high-capacity magazines that we passed in 1994 with bipartisan support in Congress and the support of law enforcement. Nine categories of semi-automatic weapons were included in that ban, like AK-47s and AR-15s.
And in the 10 years it was law, mass shootings went down. But after Republicans let the law expire in 2004 and those weapons were allowed to be sold again, mass shootings tripled. Those are the facts.
- A few years ago, the family of the inventor of the AR-15 said he would have been horrified to know that its design was being used to slaughter children and other innocent lives instead of being used as a military weapon on the battlefields, as it was designed — that’s what it was designed for.
- Stronger background checks are something that the vast majority of Americans, including the majority of gun owners, agree on.
I also believe we should have safe storage laws and personal liability for not locking up your gun.
The shooter in Sandy Hook came from a home full of guns that were too easy to access. That’s how he got the weapons — the weapon he used to kill his mother and then murder 26 people, including 20 first graders.
- We should also have national red-flag laws so that a parent, a teacher, a counselor can flag for a court that a child, a student, a patient is exhibiting violent tendencies, threatening classmates, or experiencing suicidal thoughts that makes them a danger to themselves or to others.
- In Uvalde, the shooter was 17 when he asked his sister to buy him an assault weapon, knowing he’d be denied because he was too young to purchase one himself. She refused.
But as soon as he turned 18, he purchased two assault weapons for himself. Because in Texas, you can be 18 years old and buy an assault weapon even though you can’t buy a pistol in Texas until you’re 21.
If we can’t ban assault weapons, as we should, we must at least raise the age to be able to purchase one to 21.
- Look, I know some folks will say, “18-year-olds can serve in the military and fire those weapons.” But that’s with training and supervision by the best-trained experts in the world. Don’t tell me raising the age won’t make a difference.
- We should repeal the liability shield that often protects gun manufacturers from being sued for the death and destruction caused by their weapons. They’re the only industry in this country that has that kind of immunity.
Imagine — imagine if the tobacco industry had been immune from being sued — where we’d be today. The gun industry’s special protections are outrageous. It must end.
- And let there be no mistake about the psychological trauma that gun violence leaves behind.
Imagine being that little girl — that brave little girl in Uvalde who smeared the blood off her murdered friend’s body onto her own face to lie still among the corpses in her classroom and pretend she was dead in order to stay alive. Imagine — imagine what it would it be like for her to walk down the hallway of any school again.
Imagine what it’s like for children who experience this kind of trauma every day in school, in the streets, in communities all across America.
Imagine what it is like for so many parents to hug their children goodbye in the morning, not sure whether they’ll come back home.
Unfortunately, too many people don’t have to imagine that at all.
- Even before the pandemic, young people were already hurting. There’s a serious youth mental health crisis in this country, and we have to do something about it.
That’s why mental health is at the heart of my Unity Agenda that I laid out in the State of the Union Address this year.
We must provide more school counselors, more school nurses, more mental health services for students and for teachers, more people volunteering as mentors to help young people succeed, more privacy protection and resources to keep kids safe from the harms of social media.
This Unity Agenda won’t fully heal the wounded souls, but it will help. It matters.
- I just told you what I’d do. The question now is: What will the Congress do?
The House of Representatives has already passed key measures we need. Expanding background checks to cover nearly all gun sales, including at gun shows and online sales. Getting rid of the loophole that allows a gun sale to go through after three business days even if the background check has not been completed.
And the House is planning even more action next week. Safe storage requirements. The banning of high-capacity magazines. Raising the age to buy an assault weapon to 21. Federal red-flag law. Codifying my ban on ghost guns that don’t have serial numbers and can’t be traced. And tougher laws to prevent gun trafficking and straw purchases.
This time, we have to take the time to do something. And this time, it’s time for the Senate to do something.
But, as we know, in order to do any- — get anything done in the Senate, we need a minimum of 10 Republican senators.
I support the bipartisan efforts that include a small group of Democrats and Republican senators trying to find a way. But my God, the fact that the majority of the Senate Republicans don’t want any of these proposals even to be debated or come up for a vote, I find unconscionable.
We can’t fail the American people again.
- Since Uvalde, just over a week ago, there have been 20 other mass shootings in America, each with four or more people killed or injured, including yesterday at a hospital in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
A shooter deliberately targeted a surgeon using an assault weapon he bought just a few hours before his rampage that left the surgeon, another doctor, a receptionist, and a patient dead, and many more injured.
That doesn’t count the carnage we see every single day that doesn’t make the headlines.
- I’ve been in this fight for a long time. I know how hard it is, but I’ll never give up. And if Congress fails, I believe this time a majority of the American people won’t give up either. I believe the majority of you will act to turn your outrage into making this issue central to your vote.
Enough. Enough. Enough.
- Over the next 17 days, the families in Uvalde will continue burying their dead.
It will take that long in part because it’s a town where everyone knows everyone, and day by day they will honor each one they lost.
Jill and I met with the owner and staff of the funeral home that is being strong — strong, strong, strong — to take care of their own.
And the people of Uvalde mourn. As they do over the next 17 days, what will we be doing as a nation?
- Jill and I met with the sister of the teacher who was murdered and whose husband died of a heart attack two days later, leaving behind four beautiful, orphaned children — and all now orphaned.
The sister asked us: What could she say? What could she tell her nieces and nephews?
It was one of the most heartbreaking moments that I can remember. All I could think to say was — I told her to hold them tight. Hold them tight.
- After visiting the school, we attended mass at Sacred Heart Catholic Church with Father Eddie.
In the pews, families and friends held each other tightly. As Archbishop Gustavo spoke, he asked the children in attendance to come up on the altar and sit on the altar with him as he spoke.
There wasn’t enough room, so a mom and her young son sat next to Jill and me in the first pew. And as we left the church, a grandmother who had just lost her granddaughter passed me a handwritten letter.
It read, quote, “Erase the invisible line that is dividing our nation. Come up with a solution and fix what’s broken and make the changes that are necessary to prevent this from happening again.” End of quote.
My fellow Americans, enough. Enough. It’s time for each of us to do our part. It’s time to act.
For the children we’ve lost, for the children we can save, for the nation we love, let’s hear the call and the cry. Let’s meet the moment. Let us finally do something.
- God bless the families who are hurting. God bless you all.
From a hymn based on the 91st Psalm sung in my church:
- May He raise you up on eagle’s wings
and bear you on the breath of dawn
make you to shine like the sun
and hold you in the palm of His hand.
- May He raise you up on eagle’s wings
- That’s my prayer for all of you. God bless you.
Remarks on the Supreme Court Decision to Overturn Roe v. Wade (24 June 2022)Edit
- Remarks by President Biden on the Supreme Court Decision to Overturn Roe v. Wade (24 June 2022) · "Biden's reaction to Roe v. Wade ruling", CNN (24 June 2022)
- Today, the Supreme Court of the United States expressly took away a constitutional right from the American people that it had already recognized.
They didn’t limit it. They simply took it away. That’s never been done to a right so important to so many Americans.
But they did it. And it’s a sad day for the Court and for the country.
- Fifty years ago, Roe v. Wade was decided and has been the law of the land since then.
This landmark case protected a woman’s right to choose, her right to make intensely personal decisions with her doctor, free from … interference of politics.
It reaffirmed basic principles of equality — that women have the power to control their own destiny. And it reinforced the fundamental right of privacy — the right of each of us to choose how to live our lives.
Now, with Roe gone, let’s be very clear: The health and life of women in this nation are now at risk.
- I believe Roe v. Wade was the correct decision as a matter of constitutional law, an application of the fundamental right to privacy and liberty in matters of family and personal autonomy.
It was a decision on a complex matter that drew a careful balance between a woman’s right to choose earlier in her pregnancy and the state’s ability to regulate later in her pregnancy. A decision with broad national consensus that most Americans of faiths and backgrounds found acceptable and that had been the law of the land for most of the lifetime of Americans today.
And it was a constitutional principle upheld by justices appointed by Democrat and Republican Presidents alike.
- Roe v. Wade was a 7 to 2 decision written by a justice appointed by a Republican President, Richard Nixon. In the five decades that followed Roe v. Wade, justices appointed by Republican Presidents — from Eisenhower, Nixon, Reagan, George W. [H.W.] Bush — were among the justices who voted to uphold the principles set forth in Roe v. Wade.
It was three justices named by one President — Donald Trump — who were the core of today’s decision to upend the scales of justice and eliminate a fundamental right for women in this country.
Make no mistake: This decision is the culmination of a deliberate effort over decades to upset the balance of our law. It’s a realization of an extreme ideology and a tragic error by the Supreme Court, in my view.
- The Court has done what it has never done before: expressly take away a constitutional right that is so fundamental to so many Americans that had already been recognized.The Court’s decision to do so will have real and immediate consequences. State laws banning abortion are automatically taking effect today, jeopardizing the health of millions of women, some without exceptions.
- This a sad day for the country, in my view, but it doesn’t mean the fight is over. Let me be very clear and unambiguous: The only way we can secure a woman’s right to choose and the balance that existed is for Congress to restore the protections of Roe v. Wade as federal law. No executive action from the President can do that. And if Congress, as it appears, lacks the vote — votes to do that now, voters need to make their voices heard.This fall, we must elect more senators and representatives who will codify a woman’s right to choose into federal law once again, elect more state leaders to protect this right at the local level. We need to restore the protections of Roe as law of the land. We need to elect officials who will do that.This fall, Roe is on the ballot. Personal freedoms are on the ballot. The right to privacy, liberty, equality, they’re all on the ballot. Until then, I will do all in my power to protect a woman’s right in states where they will face the consequences of today’s decision.
- While the Court’s decision casts a dark shadow over a large swath of the land, many states in this country still recognize a woman’s right to choose. So if a woman lives in a state that restricts abortion, the Supreme Court’s decision does not prevent her from traveling from her home state to the state that allows it. It does not prevent a doctor in that state — in that state from treating her. As the Attorney General has made clear, women must remain free to travel safely to another state to seek the care they need. And my administration will defend that bedrock right. If any state or local official, high or low, tries to interfere with a woman’s ex- — exercising her basic right to travel, I will do everything in my power to fight that deeply un-American attack.
- My administration will also protect a woman’s access to medications that are approved by the Food and Drug Administration — the FDA — like contraception, which is essential for preventative healthcare; mifepristone, which the FDA approved 20 years ago to safely end early pregnancies and is commonly used to treat miscarriages.Some states are saying that they’ll try to ban or severely restrict access to these medications. But extremist governors and state legislators who are looking to block the mail or search a person’s medicine cabinet or control a woman’s actions by tracking data on her apps she uses are wrong and extreme and out of touch with the majority of Americans.
- I’ve warned about how this decision risks the broader right to privacy for everyone. That’s because Roe recognized the fundamental right to privacy that has served as the basis for so many more rights that we have come to take — we’ve come to take for granted that are ingrained in the fabric of this country: the right to make the best decisions for your health; the right to use birth control — a married couple — in the privacy of their bedroom, for God’s sake; the right to marry the person you love. Now, Justice Thomas said as much today. He explicitly called to reconsider the right of marriage equality, the right of couples to make their choices on contraception. This is an extreme and dangerous path the Court is now taking us on.
- Let me close with two points. First, I call on everyone, no matter how deeply they care about this decision, to keep all protests peaceful. Peaceful, peaceful, peaceful. No intimidation. Violence is never acceptable. Threats and intimidation are not speech. We must stand against violence in any form regardless of your rationale. Second, I know so many of us are frustrated and disillusioned that the Court has taken something away that’s so fundamental. I know so many women are now going to face incredibly difficult situations. I hear you. I support you. I stand with you. The consequences and the consensus of the American people — core principles of equality, liberty, dignity, and the stability of the rule of law — demand that Roe should not have been overturned. With this decision, the conservative majority of the Supreme Court shows how extreme it is, how far removed they are from the majority of this country. They have made the United States an outlier among developed nations in the world. But this decision must not be the final word. My administration will use all of its appropriate lawful powers. But Congress must act. And with your vote, you can act. You can have the final word. This is not over.
Remarks at Signing of S.2938, the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act (25 June 2022)Edit
- While this bill doesn’t do everything I want, it does include actions I’ve long called for that are going to save lives. It funds crisis intervention, including red-flag laws. It keeps guns out of the hands of people who are a danger to themselves and to others. And it finally closes what is known as the “boyfriend loophole.” So if you assault your boyfriend or girlfriend, you can’t buy a gun or own a gun.
It requires young people ages 18 to 21 to undergo enhanced background checks. It includes the first-ever federal law that makes gun trafficking and straw purchases distinct federal crimes for the first time. It clarifies who needs to register as a federally licensed gun dealer, and run background checks before selling a single weapon.
You know, this is — also provides historic funding to address the youth mental health crisis in this country, especially — especially the trauma experienced by the survivors of this gun violence.
- When it seems impossible to get anything done in Washington, we are doing something consequential. If we can reach compromise on guns, we ought to be able to reach compromise in other critical issues, from veterans’ healthcare to cutting-edge American innovation, and so much more.
I know there’s much more work to do, and I’m never going to give up. But this is a monumental day. God bless us with the strength to continue to work to get the work that’s left undone done, and the lives lost that can’t be saved that obviously are gone but will be an inspiration for us to do more.
- Congress must act to codify Roe and the filibuster should not stand in the way. But right now, we don’t have the votes to change the filibuster. That means we need to elect more Democratic senators and reelect our House majority in November to get this bill to my desk.
- 6 July 2022 tweet
- It is noteworthy that the percentage of women who register to vote and cast a ballot is consistently higher than the percentage of men who do so. End of quote. Repeat the line. Women are not without electoral and/or political or lemme be precise, not and/or: OR political power. That's another saying that you the women of America can determine the outcome .. of this issue.
- 8 July 2002, as transcribed by Alabama Times
Remarks on a Successful Counterterrorism Operation in AfghanistanEdit
- Remarks by President Biden on a Successful Counterterrorism Operation in Afghanistan (1 August 2022)
- My fellow Americans, on Saturday, at my direction, the United States successfully concluded an airstrike in Kabul, Afghanistan, that killed the emir of al Qaeda, Ayman al-Zawahiri.
- You know, al-Zawahiri was bin Laden’s leader. He was with him all the — the whole time. He was his number-two man, his deputy at the time of the terrorist attack of 9/11. He was deeply involved in the planning of 9/11, one of the most responsible for the attacks that murdered 2,977 people on American soil.
For decades, he was a mastermind behind attacks against Americans, including the bombing of the USS Cole in 2000, which killed 17 American sailors and wounded dozens more.
He played a key role — a key role in the bombing of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, killing 224 and wounding over 4,500 others.
He carved a trail of murder and violence against American citizens, American service members, American diplomats, and American interests. And since the United States delivered justice to bin Laden 11 years ago, Zawahiri has been a leader of al Qaeda — the leader.
From hiding, he coordinated al Qaeda’s branches and all around the world — including setting priorities, for providing operational guidance that called for and inspired attacks against U.S. targets.
He made videos, including in recent weeks, calling for his followers to attack the United States and our allies.
Now justice has been delivered, and this terrorist leader is no more.
- People around the world no longer need to fear the vicious and determined killer. The United States continues to demonstrate our resolve and our capacity to defend the American people against those who seek to do us harm. … we make it clear again tonight that no matter how long it takes, no matter where you hide, if you are a threat to our people, the United States will find you and take you out.
- After relentlessly seeking Zawahiri for years under Presidents Bush, Obama, and Trump, our intelligence community located Zawahiri earlier this year. He had moved to downtown Kabul to reunite with members of his immediate family.
After carefully considering the clear and convincing evidence of his location, I authorized a precision strike that would remove him from the battlefield once and for all.
This mission was carefully planned and rigorously minimized the risk of harm to other civilians. And one week ago, after being advised that the conditions were optimal, I gave the final approval to go get him, and the mission was a success. None of his family members were hurt, and there were no civilian casualties.
- When I ended our military mission in Afghanistan almost a year ago, I made the decision that after 20 years of war, the United States no longer needed thousands of boots on the ground in Afghanistan to protect America from terrorists who seek to do us harm.
And I made a promise to the American people that we’d continue to conduct effective counterterrorism operations in Afghanistan and beyond.
We’ve done just that.
- My administration will continue to vigilantly monitor and address threats from al Qaeda, no matter where they emanate from.
As Commander-in-Chief, it is my solemn responsibility to make America safe in a dangerous world. The United States did not seek this war against terror. It came to us, and we answered with the same principles and resolve that have shaped us for generation upon generation: to protect the innocent, defend liberty, and we keep the light of freedom burning — a beacon for the rest of the entire world.
- Last year, on September 11th, I once more paid my respects to Ground Zero in New York City, at that quiet field in Shanksville, at the Pentagon — and at the Pentagon.
Standing at the memorial at Ground Zero, seeing the names of those who died forever etched in bronze, is a powerful reminder of the sacred promise we made as a nation: We will never forget.
The memorial also bears a quotation from Virgil: “No day shall erase you from the memory of time.” “No day shall erase you from the memory of time.”
So we continue to mourn every innocent life that was stolen on 9/11 and honor their memories.
To the families who lost fathers and mothers, husbands and wives, sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, friends and co-workers on that searing September day, it is my hope that this decisive action will bring one more measure of closure. No day shall erase them from the memory of time.
- Today and every day, I am so grateful to the superb patriots who serve the United States intelligence community and counterterrorism communities. They never forget. Those dedicated women and men who tirelessly worked every single day to keep our country safe and to prevent future tragedies — it is thanks to their extraordinary persistence and skill that this operation was a success. They have made us all safer.
And to those around the world who continue to seek to harm the United States, hear me now: We will always remain vigilant, and we will act. And we will always do what is necessary to ensure the safety and security of Americans at home and around the globe.
Today, we remember the lost. We commit ourselves to the safety of the living. And we pledge that we shall never waver from defending our nation and its people.
Thank you, all. And may God protect our troops and all those who serve in harm’s way.
We will never — we will never give up.
Quotes about BidenEdit
(Alpha order by author/source)
- One of the things I like about the fact of the Biden-Harris plan is that they are, number one, not talking about taking people’s healthcare.... The Biden-Harris plan is talking about raising people’s living wages, $15 an hour. The Trump-Pence plan is talking about giving more money to the wealthy. In fact, the Trump-Pence-McConnell plan, they refuse to pass a stimulus because they want another $200 billion in tax cuts, they want money for a fighter jet, and they want to protect corporations from liability when those corporations didn’t protect their people from coronavirus. So, what we have is two different worlds operating.... So, on the one hand, while Pence and — while Biden and Harris may not be every, fully where the Poor People’s Campaign are, they are in the world of wanting to do more. They’re in the sphere of wanting to increase. They’re in the sphere of wanting to make sure that the people have what they need, as opposed to wanting to only secure the wealthy and the greedy.
- President Joe Biden and the Democratic Congress are facing a crisis as the popular domestic agenda they ran on in the 2020 elections is held hostage by two corporate Democratic senators: fossil-fuel consigliere Joe Manchin and payday-lender favorite Kyrsten Sinema.
- Everything was upside-down
There was this lovely wife, who was just as much a part of the Senate win as he was, and she was gone.
Joe went into himself for a time
I spent a year with him. We traveled together, we skied in Vermont.
His sense of frustration was intense
- Mr. Vice President, there's a saying in my community that you're dipping into the Kool-Aid and you don't even know the flavor.
- Cory Booker in Democratic debate (2019-07-31), quoted in Golshan, Tara (1 August 2019), "“You’re dipping into the Kool-Aid and you don’t even know the flavor”: Cory Booker hits Biden on criminal justice reform", Vox
- For decades, he has been my loyal and dedicated friend. Joe has the experience, character, and decency to bring us together and restore America’s greatness. We deserve a person with integrity and judgment, someone who is honest and fair, someone who is committed to what is best for the American people.
- Jimmy Carter formally endorsing Biden at the 2020 Democratic National Convention, August 18, 2020. Retrieved from Jimmy Carter: Biden is "the right person for this moment in our nation’s history" (August 18, 2020), CNN
- Biden’s an empty vessel. I don’t think he has any firm principles.
- It was very obvious that Vice President Biden cared, as he extended to Jacob Jr. a sense of humanity, treating him as a person worthy of consideration and prayer
- You have hundreds of thousands of people pouring across every month
Not only are they letting them through, they’re farming them out all across the country, putting them on planes, putting them on buses. Do you think they’re worrying about COVID for that? Of course not.
Whatever variants there are around the world, they’re coming across that southern border.
He’s not shutting down the virus. He’s helping facilitate it.
Why don’t you get this border secure?
Until you do that, I don’t want to hear a blip about COVID from you.
- Biden and Harris show where the nation is heading: a blend of ethnicities, lived experiences and worldviews that must find a way forward together if the American experiment is to survive.
- Edward Felsenthal, editor in chief of Time magazine, discussing the magazine's selection of both Joe Biden and Kamala Harris as the 2020 joint "Person of the Year." (December 21, 2020)
- I think he has been wrong on nearly every major foreign policy and national security issue over the past four decades
- In Joe Biden, we'll have a leader who prioritizes common ground and civility over alienation, bullying, and scorched-earth tactics.
- Caroline Giuliani, daughter of Rudy Giuliani, as quoted by Veronica Stracqualursi (16 October 2020), "Rudy Giuliani's daughter says to vote for Biden and Harris to end Trump's 'reign of terror'", Miami Herald
- Again, the Democrats are urging you to vote for an obviously defective candidate. Biden has changed his principles so often, he no longer has any principles. He disavowed his authorship of the 1994 Crime Bill. He's a Trojan Horse with Bernie, AOC, Pelosi, Black Lives Matter and his party's entire Left Wing hidden inside his body just waiting to execute their pro-criminal, anti-police policies.
- Rudy Giuliani, Address to the 2020 Republican National Convention, (27 August 2020)
- On Monday, President Biden expressed his support for a ceasefire in Gaza during a phone call with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanayhu. But Biden stopped short of directly demanding Israel halt its assault, despite growing pressure from Congress, where over two dozen Democratic senators have backed an immediate ceasefire. After Biden’s call, Israel continued its attack on Gaza, which has now entered its ninth day. At the United Nations, the United States once again blocked the U.N. Security Council from backing a ceasefire. Israel is the largest recipient of U.S. military aid, receiving some $3.8 billion a year. In recent weeks, the Biden administration approved the sale of $735 million in precision-guided weapons to Israel
- Ever since I received Joe's call [asking me to be his running mate], I've been thinking . . . about the first Biden that I really came to know. Beau was the kind of guy who inspired people to be a better version of themselves. He really was the best of us. And when I would ask him, "Where'd this come from?" he'd always talk about his dad.
- Kamala Harris, discussing her relationship with Beau Biden when they both served as state attorneys general, in "Harris, As Biden's Running Mate, Says Case Against Trump Is 'Open And Shut.'" National Public Radio's Morning Edition program. (August 12, 2020)
- The civil rights struggle is nothing new to Joe. It's why he got into public service. It's why he helped reauthorise the Voting Rights Act and restore unemployment discrimination--and employment discrimination laws. And today, he takes his place in the ongoing story of America's march toward equality and justice as only--as the only, as the only who has served alongside the first black president and has chosen the first Black woman as his running mate.
- This is a genuine crisis for America because if President Biden is frustrated in his attempt to pass his Build Back Better legislation (that is overwhelmingly supported by Americans across the political spectrum) — all because business groups, giant corporations and rightwing billionaires are asserting ownership over their two “made” senators — there’s a very good chance that today’s cynicism and political violence is just a preview of the rest of the decade.
- Attacking a core American institution like the Supreme Court from the world stage is below the dignity of the President
- Mitch McConnell McConnell takes aim at Biden over criticism of Supreme Court decision (Jun 30, 2022 Updated 3 hrs ago)
- Biden is totally unprepared for that post [of president], which will lead the US into a crisis.
- You have the great fortune of being young, I remember I was two years older than you when I went to the House. But the main point is you can remember that she was there when you won a great victory, and you enjoyed it together. And now I’m sure that she’ll be watching you from now on. Good luck to you.
- Short, owlish, with a smooth Kentucky accent, McConnell seemed an unlikely Republican leader. He showed no aptitude for schmoozing, backslapping, or rousing oratory. As far as anyone could tell, he had no close friends even in his own caucus, nor did he appear to have any strong convictions beyond an almost religious opposition to any version of campaign finance reform. Joe told me of one run-in he'd had on the Senate floor after the Republican leader blocked a bill Joe was sponsoring; when Joe tried to explain the bill's merits, McConnell raised his hand like a traffic cop and said, "You must be under the mistaken impression that I care." But what McConnell lacked in charisma or interest in policy he more than made up for in discipline, shrewdness, and shamelessness- all of which he employed in the single-minded and dispassionate pursuit of power.
- Barack Obama, A Promised Land (2020), p. 245-246
- I've asked Vice President Biden to lead a tough, unprecedented oversight effort, because nobody messes with Joe. Am I right? They don't mess with him.
- [There was] some talk about Sen. Biden — now candidate for Pres. I saw him on CNN last night speaking to the John F. Kennedy school at Harvard U. He’s smooth but pure demagog[ue] — out to save Am[erica] from the Reagan doctrine.
- Ronald Reagan, diary entry dated June 15, 1987. Retrieved from Ronald Reagan warned us against Biden (August 11, 2020), The Washington Times
- We have never had a president with a longer paper trail than Joe Biden. He’s taken so many different positions on the same issues so many times throughout his career that I sometimes wonder if Biden even knows anymore what he actually thinks about a particular issue. Joe Biden might tell you one thing one day and really believe it, and then the next day he’s doing the exact opposite because he’s cut some side deal that maybe we’ll hear about in some years. Above all, Biden is an empire politician. He is someone who believes that questions of war don’t really matter on a moral level, but how does it impact America’s credibility, security and prestige
- The Intercept conducted an exhaustive analysis of Biden’s political career with a focus on his positions on dozens of U.S. wars and military campaigns, CIA covert actions, and abuses of power; his views on whistleblowers and leakers; and his shifting stance on the often contentious relationship between the executive and legislative branches over war powers.
The picture that emerges is of a man who is dedicated to the U.S. as an empire, who believes that preserving U.S. national interests and “prestige” on the global stage outweigh considerations of morality or even at times the deaths of innocent people. It also reveals a politician who consistently claims to hold bedrock principles but who often strays from those positions in support of a partisan agenda or because he wants a policy adopted regardless of the hypocrisy or contradictions. Nowhere is this dynamic more pronounced than on U.S. wars.
- Biden’s election slogan was “America is back.” The truth is that “America” never left. There will be no major departures from the imperial course under Biden. While the drone wars continue, and the shift back to Cold War posturing in Europe and Asia accelerates, Biden will maintain the hostile stance toward left movements and governments throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. On climate change, Biden will reverse some of Trump’s most extreme stances, while still placing the profits of major corporations and the military industry over the health of the planet. The militarization of the borders and the maltreatment of refugees will remain, and the vast domestic surveillance apparatus will endure. The stark truth is this: The interests of the War Party trump any political disputes between the Democrats and the Republicans.
- I think you could say it’s a good thing that Joe Biden did this, and that is the withdrawal from Afghanistan...
There was an enormous amount of pressure on Joe Biden to keep the war in Afghanistan going from within his own party, certainly from the military brass. I think Biden deserves credit for standing up to them. I am not sure that if Barack Obama had been the commander-in-chief during this period he actually would have followed through as Biden did on a total withdrawal of conventional American forces. I do think someone who is this career politician specializing in foreign policy, I think Joe Biden knew the history well enough to know that he would have been taking a catastrophic gamble by keeping U.S. troops in Afghanistan. I think outside of Bernie Sanders, I think there were almost no Democratic candidates that would have had the spine to follow through on Trump’s withdrawal plan. Regarding China, I think it is a bit of a wash because you have both the Democrats and Republicans taking an increasingly hostile posture.
- Biden, a Democrat who owns guns, wants to ban the manufacture of high-capacity magazines for civilians.
Existing owners would have to register them under more restrictive federal regulations or sell them to the government.
Magazines holding more than 10 rounds are used in assault rifles,
which the gun industry calls modern sporting rifles,
and which are targeted in Biden’s proposed ban.
- Biden's a stupid person
- I think there’s probably—possibly—drugs involved, That’s what I hear. I mean, there’s possibly drugs. I don’t know how you can go from being so bad where you can’t even get out a sentence.
- Donald Trump, talking about Joe Biden according to Trump two weeks away from claiming he saw Biden selling drugs outside the Washington Monument. Vanity Fair. (September 9, 2020).
- Running against the worst candidate in the history of presidential politics puts pressure on me . . . Could you imagine if I lose? My whole life, what am I going to do? I’m going to say, ‘I lost to the worst candidate in the history of politics.’ I’m not going to feel so good. Maybe I’ll have to leave the country?
Is China Really a Threat? Noam Chomsky Slams Biden For Increasingly Provocative Actions in Region (November 23, 2021), Democracy Now!Edit
- Right at the same time as Keating’s article, Australia’s leading military correspondent Brian Toohey, highly knowledgeable, did an assessment of the relative military power of China, in their own region of China and the United States and its allies Japan and Australia. It’s laughable. One U.S. Trident submarine, now being replaced by even more lethal ones — one U.S. submarine can destroy almost 200 cities anywhere in the world with its nuclear weapons. China in the South China Sea has four old noisy submarines which can’t even get out because they’re contained by superior U.S. and Allied Force...
In the face of this, the United States is sending a fleet of nuclear submarines to Australia. That’s the AUKUS deal—the Australia, U.K., United States—which have no strategic purpose whatsoever.
They will not even be in operation for 15 years, but they do incite China almost certainly to build up its lagging military forces, increasing the level of confrontation. There are problems in the South China Sea that can be met with diplomacy and negotiations, the regional powers taking the lead, could go into the details.
But the right measure is not increasing provocation, increasing the threat of an accidental development which could lead to devastating, even Earthly-terminal nuclear war. But that is the direction the Biden administration is following, expansion of the Trump programs. That is the core of their foreign policy programs.