November 11th, 2008
02:00 PM ET
11 years ago

Biden speaks at Veterans Day ceremony

Joe Biden spoke at his home state's Veterans Day ceremony Tuesday.

Joe Biden spoke at his home state's Veterans Day ceremony Tuesday.

NEW CASTLE, Delaware (CNN) – Vice President-elect Joe Biden spoke at his home state’s Veterans Day ceremony Tuesday morning, thanking the veterans present for their service and re-iterating his campaign’s promise to care for those coming back from foreign battlefields “in this war that we ignore in everyday life.”

“We are a nation at war,” said Biden “Sometimes, you would not recognize that because such a small percentage of our population is serving. But as I speak, it is probable that some young American has been felled by a bullet, or a IED, or a bomb or a terrorist attack somewhere in Afghanistan or in Iraq.”

As he regularly did on the campaign trail, Biden praised the National Guard for the role they’ve played in Iraq and Afghanistan, saying the way they have joined in the fight with regular forces is “seamless.”

“I am astounded, I am moved to the point of pride that is hard to explain with the professionalism, the high morale and the unquestioned capability of our military forces now,” said Biden. “Regular in addition to our National Guard and Reserve. You cannot tell the distinction, it’s seamless.” (Biden’s son Beau is a captain in Delaware’s National Guard, deploying to Iraq at the end of the month.)

The future VP noted that post-traumatic stress levels, traumatic brain injury numbers, divorce and suicide rates are higher than in any other war. He added that he feels uncomfortable calling November 11 a holiday, saying it’s more a “holy day” because of the sacred obligation to those making sacrifices "in this war that we ignore in everyday life."

“The only sacred, sacred obligation this nation has is to care for those who we sent to war and prepare them and equip them with the best is available in the world and care for them when they come home,” said Biden. “The homecoming does not end with the homecoming parade.”

At the beginning of his remarks, Biden thanked his introducer for taking note of his new title but said nothing will give him more honor that being a senator from Delaware. He also shared with the crowd that he and his wife Jill will be visiting the Vice President’s residence at the Naval Observatory on Friday, as the Obamas visited the White House Monday.

Filed under: Joe Biden
soundoff (58 Responses)
  1. California Gold

    It's not that we aren't noticing these wars. It's that the media has been banned. Unlike Vietnam, today the media can't cover funerals, aren't allowed to cover news of the planes arriving with injured and half dead soldiers, and aren't allowed to cover the planes off loading caskets. 20 soldiers, on average, are killed every day. More injured and forever maimed. This Bush administration has a "cone of silence" and censored the public. I hope the Obama administration restores media access.

    November 11, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  2. Female Voter

    Oh how I love Joe Biden and his family. VPE Biden did a wonderful job on the stump during the election cycle. He dosn't get much credit fromt he media but, I think he is a great human being and will be a great VP.

    November 11, 2008 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  3. LIP

    Did he ask any wheel chair bound veterans to stand up?
    Probably not, since he has already traveled that route.

    November 11, 2008 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  4. LyonsPhilly

    Way to go Biden....Someone needed to recognize the veterans today. There surely were no big headlines in the paper.....Obama chose the right one......

    November 11, 2008 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  5. Brian from Fort Mill, SC

    LIP November 11th, 2008 2:44 pm ET

    Did he ask any wheel chair bound veterans to stand up?
    Probably not, since he has already traveled that route.
    Funny. At least he didn't wave at Stevie Wonder, expecting him to wave back, like George Bush did. 🙂

    November 11, 2008 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  6. Janey /proud American/michigan

    Are they letting gaffe-man Botox Joe speak again? Female voter, did you ever wonder why he gets no kudos from the media?–he always makes their "chosen one" look bad with his ignorance. I guess they let him out today because he is a veteran....even though he backs Obama who is against the troop funding.

    November 11, 2008 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  7. hope

    joe, you are my hero.

    November 11, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  8. Doug R.

    How disgusting to see smarmy Cheney place a wreath on the Veterans Memorial.

    November 11, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  9. TyWebb

    Hey, "LIP", get over it.

    November 11, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  10. williefloyd

    Our military has no greater advocate than Joe Biden. This great gentleman will be remembered as an outstanding vice-president.

    November 11, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  11. Allen

    Dude I think you need some more botox in your forehead. It's starting to move again.....

    November 11, 2008 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  12. Pete S.

    Beau still hasn't deployed? I'll be surprised if he deploys at all considering that he's a high(ish)-profile son of the VP-elect. Besides, isn't he way high in the running to replace his father as Delaware senator?

    McCain's son(s?) serve in the war, but they are relative unknowns and were serving before the campaign began. Plus their dad didn't win.

    Part of me thinks that it would be better for Biden, Jr.'s brigade if he wasn't deployed as it eliminates potential for high-profile targeting.

    November 11, 2008 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  13. Bruce

    I wonder if Biden would be willing to go to Iraq permanently and serve his country better that way. Just a thought......

    November 11, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  14. KJL

    I hope all our men and women in the services today live to be veterans.

    November 11, 2008 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  15. Critical Thinking

    May God bless all veterans – young and old. I pray that the new administration will live up to my expectations of their desire to not take veterans for granted. One does not have to be a republican to love this country and appreciate those in uniform.

    Good job Biden and may you and your family be blessed as you enter into your new position in January.

    November 11, 2008 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  16. ANGIE

    Where is Mccain today? This is Veterans day and no Mccain showing respect, oh thats right I forgot he doesnt support our troops or veterans very much so haters before you start bashing Biden where oh where is your man Mccain today?

    November 11, 2008 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  17. Al

    finally some focus on vice-president elect Joe Biden!!!
    there has been so much focus on Palin its getting sickening having to listen to her and watch her
    The real vice president to be SHOULD be the one the media is focusing on and she should darn well have the courtesy to let him have his dues!!!
    Thats all she is as far as I am concerned * A I love my face in the limelight ever day* shes got one big EGO in my opinion!
    where is Hillary when you need her!!!
    lets have some interviews with Joe biden CNN!!!!

    November 11, 2008 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  18. Vic

    I love Joe Biden!!!!!

    November 11, 2008 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  19. Craig in Washington


    Would YOU be willing to go to Iraq permanently? I bet that would be a better service to our country than you perform by making snide remarks.

    November 11, 2008 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  20. 60 year old, white female for Obama

    How hard this must have been for him knowing that his son is presently in Iraq!!

    Biden has and will continue to serve his country well!! How refreshing it will be to have an honest man instead of a war criminal as VP!!!

    November 11, 2008 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  21. bababear

    I was not a supporter of the war – neither Irag nor Viet Nam – but I believe the way our returning veterans have been treated has been shameful. It seems as thought the govt has almost looked for loopholes to deny the vets the fruits they have rightfully earned by putting their lives on the line to protect our freedoms. To deny them healthcare on technicalities, and the education they were promised as well as other things determining safety and support while they are in harms way (vests, etc) should be a given and not even up for discussion. I hope now that what is right by the men and women will be done and not just given lip service like the past 8 years. Even from Vets, themselves in politics who should know better.

    November 11, 2008 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  22. 1/20/13

    Are they patriotic too Joe, I thought only people that pay higher taxes for the benefit of the lazy are patriotic.

    November 11, 2008 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  23. Rich

    Jo Biden needs to get a few more facelifts and smooth out the wrinkles. A wig and some mascara, and he'll be the female VP that everyone thought Hillary should have been

    November 11, 2008 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  24. DB

    What a gentle man. We are blessed to have him soon be our vice president.

    November 11, 2008 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  25. Obama Victim

    closest Dumb Joe will ever get to the military

    November 11, 2008 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
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