Joe Biden—full name Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr.—is the 46th president of the United States. Before his election, he served as Vice President during President Barack Obama's two terms, and as a Senator from Delaware for 36 years. When he took office in 2021 at age 78, he became the oldest president in U.S. history. Here, take a look back at Joe Biden's life in photos:
Joe was born in Scranton, Pennsylvania in 1942. He's pictured here (center, the older boy) at age 9, with his siblings.
In 1965, Biden graduated from University of Delaware with a Bachelor of Arts degree. He double majored in history and political science.
A young Joe Biden at age 25.
In 1968, Biden graduated from Syracuse University College of Law, earning his Juris Doctor degree.
Joe married Neilia Hunter in 1966; here, he's pictured on this 30th birthday with Neilia and their second child, Hunter.
Tragically, shortly after Biden was elected senator, Neilia was in a car crash, and she died, along with their daughter, Naomi. Their other two children, Beau and Hunter, survived. He was sworn in at his sons' hospital beside.
During his time in the Senate, he commuted from Wilmington to Washington every day.
In 1976, Biden became the first U.S. senator to endorse Jimmy Carter for president.
Biden was re-elected to the Senate six times, and currently holds the record of Delaware's longest-serving senator.
In 1987, Biden ran for president for the first time. He's pictured here with his family, Beau, Hunter, Ashley, and Jill, after announcing his bid.
That same year, he would withdraw his candidacy for president.
In 1988, he had an aneurysm, and a pulmonary embolism, keeping him out of the Senate for seven months. Here, he's seen on the train platform in Wilmington, Delaware, returning to work.
His family is Catholic and of Irish descent, and Biden is proud to be an Irish American. Here, he's wearing a green tie in honor of St. Patrick's Day.
Biden, a longtime member of the Senate Committee on the Judiciary, chaired it from 1987 to 1995, and presided over the Supreme Court confirmation hearings of Robert Bork and Clarence Thomas.
In 1994, Biden helped pass the Violence Against Women Act, described by the Biden White House as a "landmark legislation that strengthens penalties for violence against women, creates unprecedented resources for survivors of assault, and changes the national dialogue on domestic and sexual assault."
During his tenure in the Senate, he was also a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, chairing it from 2001 to 2003 and 2007 to 2009.
Biden's aviator sunglasses, which he has worn since he was a lifeguard in college, are part of his signature style.
Biden, then the ranking Democrat on Senate Foreign Relations, voted to authorize the war in Iraq, but years later, called his vote a mistake.
He decided to run for president again in January 2007, before ultimately dropping out of the race a year later following the Iowa caucus.
Seven months later, Barack Obama selected Biden as his running mate. During their first joint appearance, Obama said, "He is still that scrappy kid from Scranton who beat the odds, the dedicated family man and committed Catholic who knows every conductor on that Amtrak train to Wilmington."
One consistent fact about Biden: He loves ice cream.
The Obama-Biden ticket won the presidency. Biden is pictured here, as Vice-President elect, with his mother Jean during election night.
The Bidens at the 2009 inauguration, where Joe became the 47th Vice President of the United States.
Biden's oldest son, Beau, served in the U.S. Army. They're pictured together here at Camp Victory in Baghdad, Iraq.
Biden made an appearance on Parks & Recreation, as Amy Poehler's character Leslie Knope was obsessed with him and considers him her hero and crush. "His staff really loves the show, and he apparently had watched the show with his family and his family liked it," executive producer Michael Schur told Entertainment Weekly.
Obama and Biden were re-elected in 2012, winning 332 electoral college votes to Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan's 2016.
This photo of "sad Joe Biden" sparked a meme in 2014, and it wasn't his first (nor would it be his last) meme-worthy image.
In January 2017, before leaving office, Obama surprised Biden with a Presidential Medal Of Freedom. "To know Joe Biden is to know love without pretense, service without self-regard, and to live life fully," Obama said, as Biden teared up, caught off guard by the honor.
In April 2019, Biden announced he would be seeking the presidency, after not running in 2016. "We are in the battle for the soul of this nation," Biden said, saying Trump "will forever and fundamentally alter the character of this nation, who we are, and I cannot stand by and watch that happen."
Biden, amidst the COVID pandemic when many events went virtual, would go on to win the Democratic nomination after Sen. Bernie Sanders dropped out of the race.
Biden selected Senator Kamala Harris as his running mate, making her the first Black woman and first person of Indian descent to be on a presidential ticket.
Biden won the election, saying in his victory speech, "I’m humbled by the trust and confidence you placed in me. I pledge to be a president who seeks not to divide but unify, who doesn’t see red states and blue states, only sees the United States."
Days before his inauguration, he delivered remarks at the Major Joseph R. "Beau" Biden III National Guard/Reserve Center in New Castle, Delaware, named for Beau Biden, his oldest child who died of brain cancer at the age of 46 in 2015.
Biden was sworn in as the 46th President of the United States on January 20, 2021, just two weeks after a mob attacked the U.S. Capitol, falsely denying the validity of election results.
The Bidens wave at the White House.
In June 2021, on Biden's overseas trip as President, he met Queen Elizabeth at Windsor Castle.
Biden gets the third dose of the Pfizer vaccine in the South Court Auditorium in the White House.
In February, Biden nominated Ketanji Brown Jackson to the Supreme Court, and in April, the U.S. Senate confirmed her—making her the first Black woman to serve on the nation's highest court.
Biden, wearing his signature sunglasses, gives a thumbs up to reporters.
In 2023, Biden announced he would be seeking a second term as president.
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