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Joseph R. "Literally" "Big Fucking Deal" "Amtrak Joe" "Gates of Hell" "Come Hell or High Water" "Diamond Joe" Biden, Jr. is the former in a long list of gaffe-prone Vice Presidents of the United States who, at the same time, has managed to be one of Barack Obama's most important negotiators.
2008 B.B. (Before Biden)
Like any great superhero, his entire life has been marked by tragedy. He lost his wife and infant daughter in a car crash in the 70's, and his eldest son died in 2015 of cancer.
Biden's support of women's rights is broad and consistent. In 1994, Biden authored and strong-armed the passage of the Violence Against Women Act (as part of a larger bill, Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, also known as the Biden Crime Act) which among other things, aids women in cases of domestic assault and for the first time, provided a way for victims of rape or domestic assault to find redress in civil courts if the State or District prosecutor choose not to try a case.
Despite personally following his Catholic faith in the belief that life begins at conception, Biden is strongly pro-choice. In the 2012 Vice-Presidential debates, he stated his own view (and challenged all lawmakers):
“”With regard to abortion, I accept my church’s position ... life begins at conception. ... But I refuse to impose it on equally devout Christian and Muslims and Jews, and I just refuse to impose that on others.
“”I do not believe that we have a right to tell women, that they can’t control their body. It is a decision between them and their doctor. I am not going to interfere with that.
Gay marriage should be legal... oops
In May of 2012, right in the middle of the re-election campaign, Biden misspoke (or maybe not), saying that "I am absolutely comfortable with gay marriage." This gaffe forced Obama to have to actually address the gay marriage issue head on. The President said he had evolved and now accepted gay marriage. This was one of several turning points in the campaign, so thank him for that. (There's some not-entirely-unfounded speculation that Biden's "gaffe" was a trial balloon for a planned announcement by the President: if the media didn't make too much of a fuss about Biden's statement, or made a fuss in a positive direction, it was safe for the Prez to, um, come out.)
Since first becoming a Senator in 1973, Biden has ridden the train between his state and DC on Amtrak almost every week. One of his frequent trainmates was Senator Arlen Specter whom he first converted into a fellow train enthusiast and later made switch parties from (moderate) Republican to Democrat. As a frequent rider on Amtrak it should come as no surprise that Biden is a fan of rail as a mode of transportation and he has consequently been called "railfan in chief" and "Amtrak Joe" among other things. The Obama administration's ambitious high speed rail plan that was unveiled in 2009 is believed to be mostly thanks to his influence and when a train derailed on the Northeast Corridor a visibly shaken Biden spoke to media, that he himself had been on the same route numerous times and that more investments in Amtrak is needed now more than ever. The Republicans of course voted to cut Amtrak funding on the very same day.
- Dick Cheney: Joe Biden's predecessor.
- Al Gore: Cheney's predecessor and the dude who should've been president instead of Cheney's boss.
- The Onion's continuing coverage of Joe. (Of course he responded back.)
- Exploring the Origins of the Legend of Joe Biden, TPM
- Joe Biden Speech: Vice President Misuses The Word Literally, HuffPo
- In 'fiscal cliff' deal, Joe Biden upstages President Obama, Christian Science Monitor
- Biden 'absolutely comfortable' with gay marriage, Reuters
- Obama: Biden “probably got a little bit over his skis” on the issue, Washington Post.
- Jeremy Diamond and Eric Bradner, "House committee passes bill that cuts Amtrak funding after crash", CNN.
|United States 2008 presidential election articles on RationalWiki|
| Topics: Debate:Religious beliefs and public office - Mission accomplished - Same-sex marriage - United States Electoral College - Values Voter Debate 2007
Parties: Constitution Party - Democratic Party - Green Party - Libertarian Party - Republican Party
|United States 2012 presidential election articles on RationalWiki|
| Topics: Affordable Care Act - Benghazi attack - Debate:Religious beliefs and public office - Same-sex marriage - United States Electoral College
Parties: Americans Elect - Constitution Party - Democratic Party - Green Party - Libertarian Party - Prohibition Party - Republican Party (primaries • Tea Party)
Candidates: Bachmann (R) - Cain (R) - Gingrich (R) - Johnson (Lib) - Obama (D) - Perry (R) - Paul (R) - Romney (R) - Santorum (R) - Stein (Green) • Running mates: Biden (D) - Ryan (R)
Winner: Barack Obama (incumbent)