November 6th, 2008
06:00 PM ET
10 years ago

Biden flies home for 'coolest event in entire USA'

Vice President-elect Joe Biden rides in a horse drawn carriage during Delaware’s Return Day.

Vice President-elect Joe Biden rides in a horse drawn carriage during Delaware’s Return Day.

GEORGETOWN, Delaware (CNN) – Wearing a long dark coat to keep the cold rain off of him, Vice President-elect Joe Biden and his wife Jill rode around the streets of this small town in their home state Thursday afternoon in a white horse-drawn carriage as part of the biennial 200 year-old Delaware tradition known as ‘Return Day.’

“Thank you!” Biden repeatedly called out to the cheering crowds as he drove past, ducking in and out of the carriage to wave to voters who on Tuesday elected the Delaware senator to his seventh term in the U.S. Senate. (Deleware's governor will soon name a replacement Biden.)

“No matter what office I hold, I’m still Delaware,” Biden later said to loud cheers from the shivering masses in front of Georgetown’s courthouse. “There was Joe the plumber, well, I’m Joe from Delaware. And folks, it’s been an honor, it’s been a great honor representing you as a United States Senator since the first time I stood on this platform…”

“The bad news for you is Jill and I are not leaving Delaware,” he continued. “I may be the Vice President-elect but we’re going to be home every weekend so you know where we live.

“I’m still at this moment – and continue to be – Senator Joe Biden, the proudest title I’ve ever had, representing the state of Delaware,” he added. “I love you, thank you very, very, very, very much.”

Biden stood for two hours at the front of a review stand watching floats, marching bands and cars carrying past and current elected officials go by, chatting all the while with his wife and longtime friend Rep. Mike Castle.

“This is the coolest event in the entire United States of America,” Biden told a small group of reporters on the flight to Delaware Thursday morning, proceeding to spend the bulk of a 40-minute chat at the back of the plane recounting the history of the day and discussing state politics.

Return Day culminates with Republican and Democratic Party representatives jointly burying a tomahawk from the Nanticoke Indian tribe in a glass aquarium full of sand from Delaware’s Lewis Beach. The bi-partisan tradition is meant to symbolize the end of hard-fought campaigns.

The candidates from the state's races are also meant ride in the carriages together in a show of unity, the victor facing forward, the loser backwards. However, Biden’s Republican opponent, Christine O’Donnell, appeared to not have gotten the memo, leaving Biden alone in his carriage with Mrs. Biden,

Asked where O'Donnell was, Biden pointed to the carriage seat in front of him and told CNN, "I don't know, she was supposed to be here." Biden staffers said they did see her at the event but it is unclear why she didn’t join the Delaware senator in his carriage.

The future vice president's schedule forced him to leave before the actual burying of the hatchet, he is now back in Chicago and will hold a press conference with President-elect Obama on Friday, their first since winning the election.

Filed under: Joe Biden
soundoff (134 Responses)
  1. Gracie


    November 6, 2008 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  2. A Woman In California For Obama

    Great a positive story. Get it republicans? Positive. He deserves it and so does Jill. I would love to see her in the cabinet too it it were possible.

    November 6, 2008 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  3. Uh huh

    Biden is an idiot – my only question is who we'll end up in trouble with first because of an offhand comment by him.

    November 6, 2008 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  4. abc

    well done, vp elect Biden!

    November 6, 2008 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  5. Monroe W. DeVos

    You gotta love him....!

    November 6, 2008 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  6. mjc

    Joe Biden will be an excellent Vice President. I love his wife too.

    November 6, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  7. Bobby

    When is Obama going to his grandmothers furneral? It didn't take him long to hop a plane and see her when he was trying to get some sympathy votes. But now since she died he won't even go to her funeral! That goes to show you politics and himself is all he cares about!!!

    November 6, 2008 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  8. Vegas Barbie for Obama

    A fitting tribute to our new VP! And his repub. counterpart has an attorney showing up at her door to reclaim the clothes she looted during her shopping spree and kept with her when she returned back to Alaska. Just desserts for her!

    November 6, 2008 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  9. dkr

    I love Joe from Delaware!

    I hope Joe the plummer starves.

    November 6, 2008 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  10. Griff

    So Lou! Your still in the Deep-Freeze... What the hell is this Blog about??

    November 6, 2008 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  11. Voted for Obama/Biden

    WAY TO GO JOE!!!!!!
    Joe's THE MAN – cant wait until he and President Obama are truly in The White House – I plan on being in D.C. in January to witness the swearing in of our 44th President and Vice President!!

    Last post was closed re: McCain sources gripe about Palin so I will comment on that here:
    Up until a week ago Sarah was the "sweetheart" of the campaign and "a role model for women" (gag) and we were supposed to vote in this team of "Mavericks" – now that the repubs have lost – no one on the campaign (including McCain) wants anything to do with her – and all you repubs on here wanted to have her as the 2nd in command – a heartbeat away from the Presidency – now the truth comes out – told you she was SCARY – not only doesnt she belong anywhere NEAR national politics but the people of Alaska should start impeachment precedings on her ASAP!!!!!

    November 6, 2008 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  12. Carol

    I'm so happy and proud as an American to have "Joe from Delaware" for our Vice President, and his lovely wife Jill and family.

    November 6, 2008 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |

    My comrades did a nasty thing. They blew it big time. They were suppose to stay out of sight and remain useable at a later date. Guess that won't be the case any longer. I will explain some other "In-Roads" we have made into the Republican Camp.

    McCain, as everone knows, "IS" a R – H – I – N – O, which is a Republican In Name Only. The Republicans did not have a good canidate to offer up for the election, so the logical waffling McCain was selected to further the possibility of our Man OBAMA of winning. After trashing Clinton, we needed to insure OBAMA would win, hence we plugged in our "Two Faced Boat Anchor" John McCain (Conviently called a Republican).

    It worked perfectly. Palin, she is just pawn and she did what we needed. Take the focus off BO's experience.

    We better be prepared in 2012, because I am sure the "Right" will be coming back with a vengence. Lets make our man BO look as best we can and support him to the 100th degree.


    November 6, 2008 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  14. Mel in GA

    I love this guy......CONGRATS Mr. V.P-Elect!!!

    November 6, 2008 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  15. shaye 4rm nyc

    i can't wait until president-elect obama and biden gets into office!!


    November 6, 2008 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  16. Tom in CA

    He knows where his roots are!

    November 6, 2008 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  17. aware

    Palin walks the talk! 🙂

    Obama will have the power (ability to act) of POTUS, and he will have many tools at his disposal but he will not have the authority that is earned only by a record of sacrificial service!

    Obama chose the way of the Chicago "You wash my back, and I will wash yours" politicians!

    He has never walked the talk! He has only talked! 😦

    November 6, 2008 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  18. Michael

    "(Deleware's governor will soon name a replacement Biden.)"

    I think you mean "replacement for Biden."

    November 6, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  19. Independent

    GO JOE

    November 6, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  20. paul (staunch Moderate)

    You go Joe! You now represent the other 49 states as well and we're proud to have you – gaffes and all!

    November 6, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  21. Alex

    Amid the historic value of the election of Bararck Obama as the first ever African American President, many forget the wonderful selection of Joe Biden to serve as our next Vice-President. Lord knows he's earned it and its light years better than the present individual holding the position. Whether Republican or Democrat and despite an occasional gaff, there is no question whatsoever as to Joe Biden's integrity, honesty and determination to better our country. I have no doubt Joe Biden will give his all as he has done in the past.

    November 6, 2008 07:18 pm at 7:18 pm |
  22. SD

    My comment has nothing to do with this article. I found the previous article about decorating Palin's office funny. But since I cannot post anything there, I decided to post this message here. I am not sure if you noticed but it is decorated mostly by BLUE balloons and a huge BLUE banner. I hope it is just a co-incidence or that happens to be her favorite color. If not, I would imagine she would be a little upset with all the BLUE around when Obama just painted a big chunk of this country BLUE.

    Go Obama!!! Paint the rest of the country BLUE too and then eventually GREEN!!!!!!

    November 6, 2008 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  23. Robin

    ....and so the hatchet was never buried so bitterness could live on!

    November 6, 2008 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  24. NoPrty


    November 6, 2008 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  25. Griff

    Borack Obama is Naked....He is altogether as Naked as I have ever seen... History keeps repeating itself.... The Ignorant.,.. Carry on Crapping..... But Borack Obama for all his trash, and the trash of the Media.... America your Idiocy is Stupid.;..,.... When will the USA Stop trying to force their Garbage on the rest of the World.... Bo5rack Obama is yolur Mistake.......You are the Idiot..How Dare You America??? We are the Saviour...l. No America You Made Slaves of thse People... Now expexct the World to live Cucku Land Of Barack Obama.... Go To Hell! America...... Go To Hell@!!!!!

    November 6, 2008 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
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