Vice President Joe Biden is being praised by many for his decision to stay out of the race. Among them: Hillary Clinton.
“Joe Biden is a good man and a great vice president,” the former secretary of state said in a statement. “Serving alongside him in the Senate and then the administration, I saw firsthand his passion for our country and our people. Like millions of others, I admire his devotion to family, his grace in grief, his grit and determination on behalf of the middle class and his unyielding faith in America’s promise.“
“I am confident that history isn’t finished with Joe Biden,” Clinton added. “As he said today, there is more work to do. And if I know Joe, he will always be on the front lines, always fighting for all of us.”
.@VP is a good friend and a great man. Today and always, inspired by his optimism and commitment to change the world for the better. -H
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton)
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders echoed Clinton’s sentiment.
“Joe Biden, a good friend, has made the decision that he feels is best for himself, his family and the country,” Sanders said in a statement. “I thank the vice president for a lifetime of public service and for all that he has done for our nation. I look forward to continuing to work with him to address the major crises we face. He understands the need to rebuild the middle class; and to address income and wealth inequality, a corrupt campaign finance system, climate change, racial justice, immigration reform and the need for publicly-funded higher education.”
— CNN (@CNN)
Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, who trails far behind both Clinton and Sanders, said Biden “would have been a welcome addition” to the race.
“I will always admire his strength in the face of adversity and his passion for bettering our country,” O’Malley said. “I respect Vice President Biden’s decision today and wish the vice president and his family well.”
.@JoeBiden is one of the most decent, compassionate public servants our nation has produced—I respect his decision & wish him the best. -O’M
— Martin O'Malley (@MartinOMalley)
Former Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee, who also continues a long-shot bid for the Democratic nomination, praised Biden too.
“In the Senate, I traveled with him several times including to Iraq,” Chafee, who served as a Rhode Island senator, said in a statement. “Few Americans have had his breadth of public service. I wish him well.”
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi called Biden “an all-American patriot and a middle-class warrior.”
.@VP Biden is an all-American patriot and a middle-class warrior!
— Nancy Pelosi (@NancyPelosi)
Democratic National Committee Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz welcomed the news.
Joe Biden has and will continue to dedicate his life to helping every American do better. Couldn’t be prouder to call him a fellow Democrat.
— D Wasserman Schultz (@DWStweets)
Former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm summed up the thoughts of many Democrats.
Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus called it a “major blow” for the Democratic Party.
“The Vice President’s decision not to enter the 2016 race is a major blow for Democrats, who now will almost certainly be saddled with their unpopular and scandal plagued front-runner Hillary Clinton,“ Priebus said. “Vice President Biden was the most formidable general election candidate the Democrat Party could have fielded, and his decision not to challenge Hillary Clinton greatly improves our chances of taking back the White House. With each revelation about her growing email scandal or conflicts of interest at her State Department, Hillary Clinton is getting more beatable by the day.”
Republican frontrunner Donald Trump agreed.
I think Joe Biden made correct decision for him & his family. Personally, I would rather run against Hillary because her record is so bad.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump)
And Pennsylvania Rep. Brendan Boyle, who earlier in the week tweeted that “a very good source close to Joe” told him Biden would run, was forced to eat crow.
I have a very good source close to Joe that tells me VP Biden will run for Prez
— US Rep Brendan Boyle (@RepBrendanBoyle)
I’m surprised. Clearly something changed. Like many, I admire & respect VP Biden. In the meantime I’ll stick to my day job!
— US Rep Brendan Boyle (@RepBrendanBoyle)