ABC News’ Matt Jaffe Reports: Democratic vice-presidential nominee Joe Biden is running with Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., to seize back the Oval Office from Republican control, but lost in the race for the White House is the fact that Biden is also up for re-election as Delaware senator, a post he has held for 36 years.
Lest anyone in his home state forget, Biden Friday addressed home-state supporters at his alma mater, the University of Delaware, although the event was strictly on behalf of the Obama-Biden ticket as the Scranton-born, Wilmington-based Biden urged volunteers to bus north to Philadelphia to rally Keystone State voters.
"Today I return here 36 years after you first gave me the honor of serving you, and four days before our nation chooses the 44th President of the United States of America," Biden told the crowd of 5,700 gathered on the Newark college quad.
"But I come today with greater confidence and passion about the ability of this country to change and make things better," he said. "I believe we are literally on the cusp of a new era of American leadership in the 21st century. I believe that with every fiber in my being, for I believe, I believe this country is ready to make the sacrifices necessary, and to affect the change we need to restore the hope of our people and once again, once again become the beacon of light for the entire world."
"That’s our responsibility, that’s our possibility. That’s what we must do," charged the Delaware lawmaker. "Ladies and gentlemen, I would not have joined this ticket did I not believe Barack Obama will be the president this moment demands."
A nostalgic Biden recalled that he was on campus when John F. Kennedy addressed the nation about the Cuban missile crisis and later when the former president was assassinated. "During my years on campus here, some of the most transformative events of my generation took place," Biden told students.
Fellow Blue Hen Biden is expected to easily win re-election for his seventh Senate term representing Delaware, a post he would have to resign were he and Obama to capture the White House. The Democratic veep candidate has only mentioned his Senate campaign once while stumping for Obama, at the state’s Jefferson-Jackson dinner in Dover two weeks ago.
"Remember, folks, I am on the ballot,” Biden said October 13. "Don’t be carried away with this vice-president stuff. I am on the ballot running for my seventh term, Nancy. So don’t forget, don’t stop at the top of that ticket, walk your way down. You can vote twice for the first time in your life for the same guy and it be legal."
Today was a Biden family affair on the campus quad, with Jill and Biden’s sister Valerie Biden Owens introducing him.
"I can’t think of a better place for us to kick off the final sprint of this campaign than here at the University of Delaware," said Jill.
In his hopeful address, Biden noted the presence of another family member, his 91-year old mother Jean, "God love ya, Mom", he said.
"Fortunately for me, my mom lives with me," Biden stated. "And ladies and gentlemen, literally, literally, as I come down the driveway and stop to kiss her goodnight or to say hello in the morning, my mother, like your mothers and grandmothers, they believe, they believe in our possibilities because they know their generation weathered tougher times than we have seen and they emerged from each of the crises they faced stronger."
"Ladies and gentlemen, never ever ever in all of American history have the American people ever let their country down," he said. "Not once. And not now either."