157 Facts About Joe Biden


Joe Biden studied at the University of Delaware before earning his law degree from Syracuse University.


Joe Biden was elected to the New Castle County Council in 1970 and became the sixth-youngest senator in US history after he was elected in 1972, at age 29.


Joe Biden was the chair or ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for 12 years.


Joe Biden chaired the Senate Judiciary Committee from 1987 to 1995; drafted and led the effort to pass the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act and the Violence Against Women Act; and oversaw six US Supreme Court confirmation hearings, including the contentious hearings for Robert Bork and Clarence Thomas.


Joe Biden ran unsuccessfully for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1988 and 2008.


Joe Biden was a close counselor to Obama during his two terms as Obama's vice president.


On January 20,2021, at the age of 78, Joe Biden became the oldest president in US history, the first to have a female vice president, and the first from Delaware.


Joe Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act, the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, the Inflation Reduction Act, the CHIPS and Science Act, and the Respect for Marriage Act, which codified protections for same-sex marriage and repealed the Defense of Marriage Act.


Joe Biden appointed Ketanji Brown Jackson to the Supreme Court.


In foreign policy, Joe Biden restored America's membership in the Paris Agreement on climate change.


Joe Biden oversaw the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan that had been negotiated and begun under the previous administration, ending the war in Afghanistan, during which the Afghan government collapsed and the Taliban seized control.


Joe Biden signed AUKUS, a security pact, together with Australia and the United Kingdom.


Joe Biden responded to the Russian invasion of Ukraine by imposing sanctions on Russia and authorizing foreign aid and weapons shipments to Ukraine.


Joe Biden's paternal line has been traced to stonemason William Joe Biden, who was born in 1789 in Westbourne, England, and emigrated to Maryland in the United States by 1820.


At Archmere Academy in Claymont, Joe Biden played baseball and was a standout halfback and wide receiver on the high school football team.


At the University of Delaware in Newark, Joe Biden briefly played freshman football, and, as an unexceptional student, earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1965 with a double major in history and political science.


Joe Biden has a stutter, which has improved since his early twenties.


Joe Biden has described his efforts to reduce it by reciting poetry before a mirror.


In 1968, Joe Biden earned a Juris Doctor from Syracuse University College of Law, ranked 76th in his class of 85, after failing a course due to an acknowledged "mistake" when he plagiarized a law review article for a paper he wrote in his first year at law school.


Joe Biden was admitted to the Delaware bar in 1969.


In 1968, Joe Biden clerked at a Wilmington law firm headed by prominent local Republican William Prickett and, he later said, "thought of myself as a Republican".


Joe Biden disliked incumbent Democratic Delaware governor Charles L Terry's conservative racial politics and supported a more liberal Republican, Russell W Peterson, who defeated Terry in 1968.


Joe Biden was recruited by local Republicans but registered as an Independent because of his distaste for Republican presidential candidate Richard Nixon.


In 1969, Joe Biden practiced law, first as a public defender and then at a firm headed by a locally active Democrat who named him to the Democratic Forum, a group trying to reform and revitalize the state party; Joe Biden subsequently reregistered as a Democrat.


In 1970, Joe Biden ran for the 4th district seat on the New Castle County Council on a liberal platform that included support for public housing in the suburbs.


Joe Biden served until January 1,1973, and was succeeded by Democrat Francis R Swift.


Joe Biden had not openly supported or opposed the Vietnam War until he ran for Senate and opposed Richard Nixon's conduct of the war.


In 1968, based on a physical examination, he was given a conditional medical deferment; in 2008, a spokesperson for Joe Biden said his having had "asthma as a teenager" was the reason for the deferment.


In 1972, Biden defeated Republican incumbent J Caleb Boggs to become the junior US senator from Delaware.


Joe Biden was the only Democrat willing to challenge Boggs, and with minimal campaign funds, he was given no chance of winning.


Joe Biden's platform focused on the environment, withdrawal from Vietnam, civil rights, mass transit, equitable taxation, health care, and public dissatisfaction with "politics as usual".


On December 18,1972, a few weeks after Joe Biden was elected senator, his wife Neilia and one-year-old daughter Naomi were killed in an automobile accident while Christmas shopping in Hockessin, Delaware.


Joe Biden considered resigning to care for them, but Senate Majority Leader Mike Mansfield persuaded him not to.


Joe Biden wrote that he "felt God had played a horrible trick" on him, and he had trouble focusing on work.


In later years, Joe Biden said on several occasions that the truck driver had been drinking alcohol before the collision, and several media outlets reported this as fact.


Joe Biden met the teacher Jill Tracy Jacobs in 1975 on a blind date.


Joe Biden is Roman Catholic and attends Mass with his wife, Jill, at St Joseph's on the Brandywine in Greenville, Delaware.


Beau Joe Biden became an Army Judge Advocate in Iraq and later Delaware Attorney General before dying of brain cancer in 2015.


Joe Biden sometimes flew back from overseas to teach the class.


Joe Biden was junior senator to William Roth, who was first elected in 1970, until Roth was defeated in 2000.


Joe Biden was the first US senator to endorse Jimmy Carter for president in the 1976 Democratic primary.


Joe Biden received considerable attention when he excoriated Secretary of State George Shultz at a Senate hearing for the Reagan administration's support of South Africa despite its continued policy of apartheid.


In 1976, Joe Biden supported a measure forbidding the use of federal funds for transporting students beyond the school closest to them.


Joe Biden became ranking minority member of the Senate Judiciary Committee in 1981.


Joe Biden's supporters praised him for modifying some of the law's worst provisions, and it was his most important legislative accomplishment to that time.


In 1994, Joe Biden helped pass the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, which included a ban on assault weapons, and the Violence Against Women Act, which he has called his most significant legislation.


In 1993, Joe Biden voted for a provision that deemed homosexuality incompatible with military life, thereby banning gays from serving in the armed forces.


Joe Biden voted to acquit during the impeachment of President Clinton.


Clinton vetoed the bill in 2000, but it passed in 2005 as the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act, with Joe Biden being one of only 18 Democrats to vote for it, while leading Democrats and consumer rights organizations opposed it.


In February 1988, after several episodes of increasingly severe neck pain, Joe Biden was taken by ambulance to Walter Reed Army Medical Center for surgery to correct a leaking intracranial berry aneurysm.


Joe Biden was a longtime member of the Senate Committee on the Judiciary.


Joe Biden chaired it from 1987 to 1995 and was a ranking minority member from 1981 to 1987 and again from 1995 to 1997.


Conservatives were angered, but at the hearings' close Joe Biden was praised for his fairness, humor, and courage.


Joe Biden had known of some of these charges, but initially shared them only with the committee because Hill was then unwilling to testify.


The committee hearing was reopened and Hill testified, but Joe Biden did not permit testimony from other witnesses, such as a woman who had made similar charges and experts on harassment.


Liberal legal advocates and women's groups felt strongly that Joe Biden had mishandled the hearings and not done enough to support Hill.


Joe Biden was a longtime member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.


Joe Biden became its ranking minority member in 1997 and chaired it from June 2001 to 2003 and 2007 to 2009.


Joe Biden collaborated effectively with Republicans and sometimes went against elements of his own party.


Joe Biden voted against authorization for the Gulf War in 1991, siding with 45 of the 55 Democratic senators; he said the US was bearing almost all the burden in the anti-Iraq coalition.


Joe Biden became interested in the Yugoslav Wars after hearing about Serbian abuses during the Croatian War of Independence in 1991.


Once the Bosnian War broke out, Joe Biden was among the first to call for the "lift and strike" policy.


Joe Biden has called his role in affecting Balkans policy in the mid-1990s his "proudest moment in public life" related to foreign policy.


In 1999, during the Kosovo War, Joe Biden supported the 1999 NATO bombing of FR Yugoslavia.


Joe Biden eventually became a critic of the war and viewed his vote and role as a "mistake", but did not push for withdrawal.


Joe Biden supported the appropriations for the occupation, but argued that the war should be internationalized, that more soldiers were needed, and that the Bush administration should "level with the American people" about its cost and length.


Joe Biden opposed the troop surge of 2007, saying General David Petraeus was "dead, flat wrong" in believing the surge could work.


Joe Biden instead advocated dividing Iraq into a loose federation of three ethnic states.


Joe Biden formally declared his candidacy for the 1988 Democratic presidential nomination on June 9,1987.


Joe Biden was considered a strong candidate because of his moderate image, his speaking ability, his high profile as chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee at the upcoming Robert Bork Supreme Court nomination hearings, and his appeal to Baby Boomers; he would have been the second-youngest person elected president, after John F Kennedy.


Joe Biden raised more in the first quarter of 1987 than any other candidate.


Joe Biden's speech had similar lines about being the first person in his family to attend university.


Joe Biden responded that politicians often borrow from one another without giving credit, and that one of his rivals for the nomination, Jesse Jackson, had called him to point out that he had used the same material by Humphrey that Joe Biden had used.


Joe Biden was required to repeat the course and passed with high marks.


The limited amount of other news about the presidential race amplified these disclosures and on September 23,1987, Joe Biden withdrew his candidacy, saying it had been overrun by "the exaggerated shadow" of his past mistakes.


Joe Biden had difficulty raising funds, struggled to draw people to his rallies, and failed to gain traction against the high-profile candidacies of Obama and Senator Hillary Clinton.


Joe Biden never rose above single digits in national polls of the Democratic candidates.


Shortly after Joe Biden withdrew from the presidential race, Obama privately told him he was interested in finding an important place for Joe Biden in his administration.


Joe Biden was officially nominated for vice president on August 27 by voice vote at the 2008 Democratic National Convention in Denver.


Joe Biden's vice-presidential campaigning gained little media attention, as the press devoted far more coverage to the Republican nominee, Alaska Governor Sarah Palin.


Under instructions from the campaign, Joe Biden kept his speeches succinct and tried to avoid offhand remarks, such as one he made about Obama's being tested by a foreign power soon after taking office, which had attracted negative attention.


Relations between the two campaigns became strained for a month, until Joe Biden apologized on a call to Obama and the two built a stronger partnership.


Post-debate polls found that while Palin exceeded many voters' expectations, Joe Biden had won the debate overall.


Joe Biden was the first vice president from Delaware and the first Roman Catholic vice president.


Joe Biden lost an internal debate to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton about sending 21,000 new troops to Afghanistan, but his skepticism was valued, and in 2009, Joe Biden's views gained more influence as Obama reconsidered his Afghanistan strategy.


Joe Biden visited Iraq about every two months, becoming the administration's point man in delivering messages to Iraqi leadership about expected progress there.


Joe Biden oversaw infrastructure spending from the Obama stimulus package intended to help counteract the ongoing recession.


Rahm Emanuel, White House chief of staff, said that Joe Biden helped counter groupthink.


Joe Biden campaigned heavily for Democrats in the 2010 midterm elections, maintaining an attitude of optimism in the face of predictions of large-scale losses for the party.


Joe Biden led the successful administration effort to gain Senate approval for the New START treaty.


Some reports suggest that Joe Biden opposed proceeding with the May 2011 US mission to kill Osama bin Laden, lest failure adversely affect Obama's reelection prospects.


In October 2010, Biden said Obama had asked him to remain as his running mate for the 2012 presidential election, but with Obama's popularity on the decline, White House Chief of Staff William M Daley conducted some secret polling and focus group research in late 2011 on the idea of replacing Biden on the ticket with Hillary Clinton.


Joe Biden made his statement without administration consent, and Obama and his aides were quite irked, since Obama had planned to shift position several months later, in the build-up to the party convention.


Joe Biden apologized to Obama in private for having spoken out, while Obama acknowledged publicly it had been done from the heart.


Joe Biden was inaugurated to a second term on January 20,2013, at a small ceremony at Number One Observatory Circle, his official residence, with Justice Sonia Sotomayor presiding.


Joe Biden played little part in discussions that led to the October 2013 passage of the Continuing Appropriations Act, 2014, which resolved the federal government shutdown of 2013 and the debt-ceiling crisis of 2013.


Joe Biden himself said the US would follow ISIL "to the gates of hell".


Joe Biden had close relationships with several Latin American leaders and was assigned a focus on the region during the administration; he visited the region 16 times during his vice presidency, the most of any president or vice president.


Joe Biden never cast a tie-breaking vote in the Senate, making him the longest-serving vice president with this distinction.


Joe Biden remained in that position into 2019, before running for president.


In 2017, Joe Biden wrote a memoir, Promise Me, Dad, and went on a book tour.


Joe Biden remained in the public eye, endorsing candidates while continuing to comment on politics, climate change, and the presidency of Donald Trump.


Joe Biden continued to speak out in favor of LGBT rights, continuing advocacy on an issue he had become more closely associated with during his vice presidency.


Joe Biden continued to support efforts to find treatments for cancer.


Joe Biden finally launched his campaign on April 25,2019, saying he was prompted to run becuse he was worried by the Trump administration and felt a "sense of duty".


Trump's alleged actions against Joe Biden resulted in a political scandal and Trump's impeachment by the House of Representatives for abuse of power and obstruction of congress.


Joe Biden had previously called himself a "tactile politician" and admitted this behavior had caused trouble for him.


Joe Biden won 18 of the next 26 contests, putting him in the lead overall.


When Sanders suspended his campaign on April 8,2020, Joe Biden became the Democratic Party's presumptive nominee for president.


Joe Biden was elected the 46th president of the United States in November 2020.


Joe Biden's transition was delayed by several weeks as the White House ordered federal agencies not to cooperate.


Joe Biden was inaugurated as the 46th president of the United States on January 20,2021.


Joe Biden is the second Catholic president and the first president whose home state is Delaware.


Joe Biden is the first president from the Silent Generation.


On February 4,2021, the Joe Biden administration announced that the United States was ending its support for the Saudi-led bombing campaign in Yemen.


Joe Biden's decision met with a wide range of reactions, from support and relief to trepidation at the possible collapse of the Afghan government without American support.


In June 2021, Joe Biden took his first trip abroad as president.


Joe Biden attended a G7 summit, a NATO summit, and an EU summit, and held one-on-one talks with Russian president Vladimir Putin.


In July 2021, amid a slowing of the COVID-19 vaccination rate in the country and the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 Delta variant, Joe Biden said that the country has "a pandemic for those who haven't gotten the vaccination" and that it was therefore "gigantically important" for Americans to be vaccinated.


In September 2021, Joe Biden announced AUKUS, a security pact between Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States, to ensure "peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific over the long term"; the deal included nuclear-powered submarines built for Australia's use.


Joe Biden has prioritized diversity in his judicial appointments more than any president in US history, with the majority of appointments being women and people of color.


Joe Biden entered office nine months into a recovery from the COVID-19 recession and his first year in office was characterized by robust growth in real GDP, employment, wages and stock market returns, amid significantly elevated inflation.


Joe Biden reacted by ordering 6,000 American troops to assist in the evacuation of American personnel and Afghan allies.


Joe Biden faced bipartisan criticism for the manner of the withdrawal, with the evacuation of Americans and Afghan allies described as chaotic and botched.


Joe Biden defended his decision to withdraw, saying that Americans should not be "dying in a war that Afghan forces are not willing to fight for themselves".


Joe Biden called the extraction of over 120,000 Americans, Afghans and other allies "an extraordinary success".


Joe Biden tried to convince China and Australia to do more.


Joe Biden convened an online Major Economies Forum on Energy and Climate Change to press other countries to strengthen their climate policy.


Joe Biden pledged to double climate funding to developing countries by 2024.


Joe Biden began the year by endorsing a change to the Senate filibuster to allow for the passing of the Freedom to Vote Act and John Lewis Voting Rights Act, on both of which the Senate had failed to invoke cloture.


Joe Biden sought to strengthen ties with Australia and New Zealand in the wake of the deal, as Anthony Albanese succeeded to the premiership of Australia and Jacinda Ardern's government took a firmer line on Chinese influence.


Amid increasing tension with China, Joe Biden's administration has repeatedly walked back his statements and asserted that US policy toward Taiwan has not changed.


In late 2022, Joe Biden issued several executive orders and federal rules designed to slow Chinese technological growth, and maintain US leadership over computing, biotech, and clean energy.


On July 21,2022, Joe Biden tested positive for COVID-19 with reportedly mild symptoms.


Joe Biden signed the CHIPS and Science Act into law on August 9,2022.


The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 was introduced by Senators Chuck Schumer and Joe Manchin, resulting from continuing negotiations on Biden's initial Build Back Better agenda, which Manchin had blocked the previous year.


On October 6,2022, Joe Biden pardoned all Americans convicted of "small" amounts of marijuana possession under federal law.


On December 13,2022, Joe Biden signed the Respect for Marriage Act, which repealed the Defense of Marriage Act and requires the federal government to recognize the validity of same-sex and interracial marriages in the United States.


On September 2,2022, in a nationally broadcast Philadelphia speech, Joe Biden called for a "battle for the soul of the nation".


On February 20,2023, four days before the anniversary of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, Joe Biden visited Kyiv and met with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and first lady of Ukraine Olena Zelenska.


Joe Biden claimed that the partial rollback of Dodd-Frank regulations contributed to the bank's failure.


Joe Biden has proposed partially reversing the corporate tax cuts of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, saying that doing so would not hurt businesses' ability to hire.


Joe Biden voted for the North American Free Trade Agreement and the Trans-Pacific Partnership.


Joe Biden is a staunch supporter of the Affordable Care Act.


Joe Biden has promoted a plan to expand and build upon it, paid for by revenue gained from reversing some Trump administration tax cuts.


In 2020, Joe Biden ran on decriminalizing cannabis, after advocating harsher penalties for drug use as a US senator.


Joe Biden opposes drilling for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.


Joe Biden wants to achieve a carbon-free power sector in the US by 2035 and stop emissions completely by 2050.


Joe Biden's program includes reentering the Paris Agreement, nature conservation, and green building.


Joe Biden has spoken about human rights abuses in the Xinjiang region to the Chinese Communist Party leader Xi Jinping, pledging to sanction and commercially restrict Chinese government officials and entities who carry out repression.


Joe Biden has said he is against regime change, but for providing non-military support to opposition movements.


Joe Biden has pledged to end US support for the Saudi Arabian-led intervention in Yemen and to reevaluate the United States' relationship with Saudi Arabia.


Joe Biden supports extending the New START arms control treaty with Russia to limit the number of nuclear weapons deployed by both sides.


In 2021, Joe Biden officially recognized the Armenian genocide, becoming the first US president to do so.


Joe Biden has vowed to sign a bill codifying the protections of Roe into federal law; such a bill passed the House in 2022, but was unable to clear the Senate filibuster.


Joe Biden was consistently ranked one of the least wealthy members of the Senate, which he attributed to his having been elected young.


For instance, Joe Biden has claimed to have been more active in the civil rights movement than he actually was, and has falsely recalled being an excellent student who earned three college degrees.