August 16th, 2007
06:18 PM ET
5 years ago

Biden's son to be deployed to Iraq

Biden said his son will be deployed to Iraq.

(CNN) – Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden told a crowd at the Iowa State Fair Thursday that his son will be deployed to Iraq.

Beau Biden, Delaware’s attorney general, is a captain in the Army National Guard. His unit has been notified that it should be prepared to deploy in 2008.

“He’ll go…I don’t want him going,” the Delaware senator told the crowd. “But I don’t want my grandsons or granddaughters going back in 15 years. So how we leave makes a big difference.”

The Delaware senator’s son was in attendance as Biden addressed the crowd in Des Moines.

Republican presidential candidates John McCain and Duncan Hunter also have sons who have either served or have been called for duty in Iraq.

UPDATE: The Biden campaign tells CNN his son’s unit was placed on the activated list 2-3 weeks ago. There is no firm date for him to report yet.

UPDATE II: Delaware National Guard's Col. Len Gratteri confirms to CNN that Sen. Joe Biden's son, military lawyer Beau Biden, is scheduled to be deployed to Iraq in the early months of 2008.

Captain Biden is a Judge Advocate General in the 261st signal brigade of the Delaware National Guard.

Col. Gratteri was unsure of what kind of mission Biden would be doing, but said that his unit is preparing to deploy to Iraq.

– CNN's Mark Norman and Katy Byron


Filed under: Beau Biden • Joe Biden
soundoff (108 Responses)
  1. stephen mallon ny, ny

    ha " Ill leave your family alone"? what part of this does he mean? with the wire taps? same sex marriage?
    two of the closest relationships in his life are his daughter and his ex-wife , He betrayed his wife's trust and doesn't have his daughters trust at all. I wonder why....

    August 16, 2007 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  2. Cathy Turtletown Tn

    Hey Tom
    They didn't hear you.
    God bless the Biden family, hard times are ahead.

    August 16, 2007 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  3. Nicosia Davis Petersburg,VA

    I would like to welcome Sen. Biden to sleepless nights, avoiding the news and wondering if that knock on the door is coming from the Army chaplain. Living that life is not fun and I am waiting for Sept 9th when I can open my arms to my ex and welcome him and his company home from their 3rd tour.

    August 16, 2007 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  4. Jon, Sacramento ~ Ca

    Ryan NY,

    Good grief...you're just like Hillary! Accusing Romney of "spouting off" about his sons. If you were to actually READ news articles – you would see that Romney was being asked by a reporter why his sons hadn't enlisted. Romney gave a sensible answer that I guess you can't accept (all-volunteer military, his sons are adults and can make their own choices).

    SHAWN ~ DENVER, CO

    You're taking yourself too seriously and obviously unable to detect nuances in writing.

    My statement, "I love it when liberals call for the 'draft' when it's republican kids but turn a blind eye to democrats" – is pointing out the absurdity of partisan idiots that want to point fingers at Romney (why aren't your boys in the military) but NEVER ask or think about the democrat candidates (ie Hillary's daughter Chelsea). I used the term "DRAFT" because the partisan idiots seem to think republican kids should be FORCED into service somehow.

    Undoubtedly many will say YES republican kids should have to serve since it's "republicans" that start or support wars....

    Hillary Clinton – voted yes on Iraq
    John Edwards – voted yes on Iraq

    WW-1 (D) President Woodrow Wilson
    WW-2 (D) FDR
    Korea (D) Truman
    Vietnam (D) JFK
    Vietnam (D) LBJ
    Vietname (R) Nixon got us out
    Kosovo (D) Clinton

    How about leaving ALL the candidates' kids out of the Presidential campaign?

    August 16, 2007 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  5. Dan, Tx

    Wow, this little blurb made an impact on me. I'm not sure why it made me think about this. I mostly have been hearing in the news about how much more experience Clinton has over Obama. But Biden has so much more experience over Clinton.... And character.

    August 16, 2007 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  6. Mary, Virginia Beach

    Regarding the liberal draft...who cares if they want it, they'll just end up dodging it anyway.

    While I certainly wish Mr. Biden's son well while in Iraq, what exactly makes him any differnt than the tens of thousands of other families who are saying goodbye to loved ones this year? Maybe I will ponder that while I spend my wedding anniversary, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, and hopefully NOT the birth of our first child without my husband this year.

    August 16, 2007 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  7. Marcus, Great Lakes, IL

    I am a "Liberal" and unlike the previous poster I support a draft. The reason is if there is a draft enacted, the prospect for ending the war sooner is greater. Once the children of "privilege" are involved, there would be such an outcry that we would have to pull out. God forbid little Buffy or Muffie should get their hands dirty.

    As it stands now, the politicans believe that war is o.k as long as their loved ones are not deployed. Nevermind that those fighting have been through the revolving door numerous times without much of a break.

    They are coming back broken and we need to spend more resourses on fixing those this government have broken.

    War, who cares
    What is it good for?
    Absolutely NOTING!

    Been there, done that.

    August 16, 2007 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  8. E C Thompson, Asheville, NC

    Beau Biden is a REAL American. I wish him well.

    August 16, 2007 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  9. Paula, AL

    Hey Jon,

    Maybe Chelsea is waiting for the Bush twins to enlist? Seemed to overlook those two social gems huh?

    August 16, 2007 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  10. Jim McConkey, Port Tobacco, MD

    The highest of praise to Capt. Biden & his troops, to my stepson and his Annapolis MD troops who are shipping out next month, and all the soldiers already in IRAQ. God bring them all back safely.

    August 16, 2007 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  11. Ron, Waynesboro, PA

    To Myron, Honolulu, HI
    When you mentioned Dick Chaney's friends about getting no bid contacts of course toy are referring to Haliburton. Something you don't know is that El Presidenti Clinton is the one who allowed Haliburton to operate with no bid contracts. Also, one of the largest Stock holders happens to be a very liberal democrat, Lady Bird Johnson (now deceased) just so happens she got the stock while her husband was still the El Predidenti. This is information not reported by CNN.

    August 16, 2007 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  12. Maddy, Hartford, Ct.

    Joe Biden is a "breath of fresh air" in this mud slinging campaign.

    August 16, 2007 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  13. Will

    With the acception of McCain are any of the Republican's kids serving in Iraq

    August 16, 2007 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  14. Wally, Long Beach, CA

    Jon
    There's no blind eye. But there is the fact that, generally speaking, republicans are for the war, but don't want to personally sacrifice for the "cause".

    August 16, 2007 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  15. Timothy, Stoke-on-Trent, UK

    Good luck Captain Biden, may you and your colleagues in the Delaware National Guard stay safe and return to your families.

    To Senator Biden and his family, all our thoughts should be with you during the period of your son's deployment.

    August 16, 2007 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  16. John, San Antonio TX

    I wouldn't vote for Biden just because he has a son in the military. It's a mistake to discredit Romney just because his sons found other ways to be productive and honorable citizens besides joining the military. I'm grateful to those who serve our country in the armed forces. We fight to support and defend the US Constitution, no one swears allegiance to any political candidate or party. While we are all volunteers, the pay would need to be increased substantially to call us mercenaries. I'm also grateful to those who serve our country who aren't in the military, they are the good parents, the teachers, the farmers, etc. they love America too. I serve in the Army, my dad served in Vietnam, both of my grandfathers fought in WWII, my wife's brother is in the Navy.

    August 16, 2007 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  17. Veronica McNamara San Clemente, CA

    Joe Biden is well qualified to be president. Why doesn't CNN mention the fact that he doesn't own stock in order to not be beholden to corporations. Check what Biden has accomplished (deeds not words)and compare his accomplishments to those of the other candidates. Joe's new book 'Promises To Keep' is one everyone should read.

    August 16, 2007 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  18. Buddy -Rancho Mirage CA

    But has Biden ever served? If not what right does he have to talk about the issue at all?

    August 16, 2007 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  19. Jon, Sacramento ~ Ca

    Wally ~ Long Beach,

    FACTS contradict your views (republicans are for the war but don't want to personally sacrifice for the "cause")

    The good men and women serving in Iraq are only democrat kids?

    Come on, Wally. They're AMERICANS (republicans, democrat, independent,etc). You have no basis to state republicans don't want to "personally sacrifice".

    If you DO have evidence – please share.

    August 16, 2007 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  20. Adam, Clearwater, FL

    Looking at how this blog has developed, I can see that people are starting to realize that Biden has both the experience of Clinton and the passion and independence of Obama. What an unheard-of event in politics–to be flung into the top tier not by a truckload of money, but by an act of integrity.

    God bless Joe Biden and his family.

    August 16, 2007 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  21. C. Diesel, Raleigh, NC

    From a Republican and JAG veteran, I wish Captain Biden, and all U.S. troops, the best. God Bless.

    Let's resume the air war, flatten that rat trap, and let our people come home safe. If we have 155,000 people in Iraq, then there are exactly that number of people that I give a darn about.

    Everyone keeps wondering about the right exit strategy will further a lasting peace. History shows us that the ten day plan we employed in Japan in August 1945 seemed to do the trick. If we are going to have to fight this War, let's try to win it.

    August 16, 2007 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  22. Ryan, New York, NY

    Ryan NY,

    Good grief…you're just like Hillary! Accusing Romney of "spouting off" about his sons. If you were to actually READ news articles – you would see that Romney was being asked by a reporter why his sons hadn't enlisted. Romney gave a sensible answer that I guess you can't accept (all-volunteer military, his sons are adults and can make their own choices).
    And that might have been fine had he kept his mouth shut at that point, but you forgot the last part of that quote, you know, the part that's important to my comment:

    “One of the ways my sons are showing support for our nation is helping to get me elected because they think'd I be a great president (laughter) and my son Josh brought the family Winnibago and has visited 99 counties most of them with his three kids and his wife, and I respect that and all of those and the way they serve this great country.

    You know, the part where he equates helping him get elected with military service. Maybe you should try reading the articles to the end.

    August 16, 2007 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  23. Andre' Green, Dalworthington Texas

    Hey Will,

    I think Duncan Hunter has a son that's either is serving or has served in Iraq.

    Can someone tell me what a real American is? It is frustrating to me to hear people say who is real and who is not a True American Patriot (or whatever the label of the week is) when most of the people accusing people of being bad Americans have done nothing more for his country than suck and sell this country dry and then scurry back into their lairs before the sun comes up.

    August 16, 2007 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  24. Joanne, Beaverton, MI

    I wish hi the very best. Hopefully he will com home safe and sound. My son was injured in Iraq 2 yrs ago and still hasn't received a penny in benenfits from the army or VA. He is paying out of pocket for his doctor and his meds. He doesn't meet VA's "criteria" for his meds. We have been fighting this battle for over 15 months.

    August 16, 2007 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  25. David, Salinas, CA

    Buddy from Rancho Mirage CA asks:

    “But has Biden ever served? If not what right does he have to talk about the issue at all?”

    Buddy –

    Senator Biden was rejected from military service on medical grounds, but would have been eligible in case of a national emergency

    Senator Biden talks about this because it is his job, as Chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations.

    And EVERY American, veteran or not, has the right to talks about this issue.

    For a large data-base of politicians service records (or lack thereof) see:

    http://www.awolbush.com/whoserved.html

    August 16, 2007 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
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