Vice President Joe Biden announced today that he will not be seeking the White House in 2016. Biden’s remarks came during a press conference in the White House Rose Garden this afternoon.
Citing the recent loss of his son, Biden said his family’s grieving process has closed the window on the opportunity to mount a realistic campaign.
“I’ve said all along…it may very well be that the [grieving] process closes the window on mounting a realistic campaign for president,” Biden said, flanked by his wife and President Barack Obama. “I’ve concluded that it has closed.”
“I couldn’t do this [run for President] if my family wasn’t ready. My family has suffered loss, and I hoped there would come a time when — sooner rather than later — when you can think of your loved one that it would bring a smile to your lips before a tear to your eye,” he said. “That is where we are today, thank God.”
Though he will not run for president, Biden said he’s not planning to disappear from the public eye.
“While I will not be a candidate, I will not be silent,” the vice president said.Â “I believe Obama has led this nation from crisis to recovery… I’m proud to play a part in that.”
Biden also encouraged Democratic presidential contenders to run on Obama’s legacy.
“We intend to spend the next 15 months fighting for what we’ve always cared about,” he said. “We can do this, and when we do America won’t just win the future, we will own the finish line.”