November 24th, 2008
04:29 PM ET
8 years ago

Former Biden advisor picked as Senate replacement

The Vice President-elect will be replaced in the Senate by one of his key aides.

The Vice President-elect will be replaced in the Senate by one of his key aides.

(CNN) – Vice President-elect Joe Biden’s former chief of staff, Ted Kaufman, will fill his seat in the Senate, Delaware Gov. Ruth Minner announced Monday.

“His political views are close to Senator Biden’s, and he doesn’t need any on-the-job training,” Minner said in a statement. “He’ll be an effective Senator for Delaware from day one.”

The announcement was made amid rumors that Biden’s son, Beau, would take his father’s place in the Senate. But the Delaware attorney general, who has deployed to Iraq as a captain in the National Guard, said last week that he wouldn’t take the appointment if offered.

While this move was seen by some as a way for the vice president-elect to hold the seat for his son’s potential future run, Biden said Monday he is more concerned about his son’s safety in Iraq than his political career.

“As he said when he deployed overseas, he is determined to fulfill his military obligations and then return to his duties as Attorney General,” he said in a statement. “If he chooses to run for the Senate in the future, he will have to run and win on his own. He wouldn’t have it any other way.”

Biden, who just won his seventh term to the Senate, has to leave his seat before Inauguration Day. Kaufman will be sworn in sometime in the beginning or middle of January.

"It has been pointed out, that I will have limited seniority," said Kaufman in remarks released Monday. "However, having worked in and studied the Senate for 36 years, I can say with confidence that having a relationship with the President and Vice-President will help me to effectively represent the people of the State Of Delaware.

"I also want to make clear that I am very comfortable with retiring after 2 years. I don't think Delaware's appointed Senator should spend the next two years running for office," he added.

Kaufman is currently co-chair of Biden’s vice-presidential transition team and was Biden’s chief of staff for 19 years. He will serve as Senator until a 2010 special election.

Filed under: Joe Biden
soundoff (80 Responses)
  1. EW

    Biden didn't win anything. He rode the coattails of Obama.

    November 24, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  2. G.R.I.T.S. - Girl Raised in the South

    To Anonymous: Were you asking how Sen. Biden served with honor and distinction? I hope you are genuinely interested. If you are, check out and look up Joe Biden. It has a really good section on his congressional work. Just to name a few – Drug Czar, Violence Against Women Act, Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, Chairman – Committe on Foreign Relations. I could go on, but you can check it out for yourself.

    November 24, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  3. Margee Wydra

    Rudy Bellamy sounds like a bitter, out of touch republican. I am so proud of Joe Biden and what he has done for our country. Evidently I am not the only one... Pres. elect Obama must think so too!

    November 24, 2008 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  4. Nicholas, Nigeria

    Even though I agree with Biden most times, I think he is a power monger. I hope he doesnt do anything to President Obama. I pray for both men.

    November 24, 2008 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  5. thatone1

    Go Joe!

    November 24, 2008 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  6. ME

    Yup, another day, another win for the "anything-to-do-with-Palin" Story.....over 500 posts...any other story here get even close to that??? If you libs hate her so much, stop reading and commenting on the stories about her!!!!

    And for those of you who posted on her "thank-you" story, Please go back and see what was said about Reagan early thought he was stupid....boy, they just can't seem to get things right, can they?

    Palin 2012

    November 24, 2008 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  7. John S

    Chris and Rudy. Two sour faced Republican sore losers. Get a life both of you. The man is off to Iraq and his father has served this country in the senate for probably longer than you been out of diapers. Man, I just can't understand Repukes. They hootand howler about Obasma and his cabinte, yet the man is not even the President yet. The average Repukes IQ must be their show size. Repukes = No Brains, No McCain, No more America in the Drain. Why don't you Repukes get a life and get educated.

    November 24, 2008 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  8. Robert, New York, NY

    Re: Chris, I don't think there's anyone in Delaware truly qualified to be in the US Senate.

    November 24, 2008 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  9. Shawn

    I ❤ Joe

    November 24, 2008 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  10. Barry

    Did Biden's senate replacement receive the requisite plagiarism training from our new VP? It's pretty scaring imagining Biden being only one step from the Presidency. Real scary. ::: Shudders :::

    November 24, 2008 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  11. Frank, Dayton, Ohio

    I am sure the people of Delaware will be well served by someone groomed by Biden himself. Biden has done so much for the state and the country: the governor has done right by them by this appointment. Kudos to her.

    November 24, 2008 06:26 pm at 6:26 pm |
  12. Jane

    I thought nepotism was bad. Guess Obama/Biden don't see it that way.

    November 24, 2008 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  13. happy thanksgiving

    joe you make us proud, God guide your son.

    November 24, 2008 06:35 pm at 6:35 pm |
  14. CanIcallyouJoe

    And the republican whining begins in 3....2....1...

    November 24, 2008 06:36 pm at 6:36 pm |
  15. BK

    It strikes me again how most Republican comments are excessively hateful while most 'liberal' comments are very kind. This is not a coincidence.

    November 24, 2008 06:37 pm at 6:37 pm |
  16. Proud to be American

    Thank you for your support Joe and God Bless Beau it is our prayer he makes it home safely!

    November 24, 2008 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  17. His Royal Majesty

    Out of touch? Biden is one of the non Millionaire Senators. if John Mccain was your pick maybe he was in touch. I dont understand how, he wasnt even intouch with his banks, for he lost track of his money and houses.

    November 24, 2008 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  18. muffy

    Adrian and Rudy:

    Sure Palin's son would be great, did you not know he had the choice of Iraq or prison for cutting the brake lines on the school buses? He would be great to run for office. Let us forget the Palin family.
    Rudy you are just a hateful, nasty Repug (no doubt) or you would not say what you did about Joe Biden who is one of the finest anywhere. You are just trash.

    November 24, 2008 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  19. sglman4Obama


    November 24, 2008 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  20. sihtam

    to: Adrian from Chicago, IL

    I believe you need to be a high school graduate at least and I don't believe the Palin family has produced one of those yet.

    ...just sayin'

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

    Hey Joe:

    I agree with you, but it should have read:

    He must have eaten, not must have ate.


    November 24, 2008 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  22. Texas Teacher

    Rudy Bellamy... obviously, you have been living under a rock for the last two years! Obama/Biden won.... they are NOT out of touch with the American people! But, obviously YOU are... right along with the GOP! Pfft.... You need to turn off Limbaugh and his ilk.... and start thinking for yourself..... sheep end up following their leaders over clips.... recall? 🙂

    November 24, 2008 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  23. Texas Teacher

    NOT CLIPS.... dang.... following their leaders over CLIFFS! Sheesh.. pardon me and my auto pilot typing fingers!

    November 24, 2008 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  24. me

    the comments against Rudy Bellamy are unnecessary and if you do not agree with him/her then just give it a rest

    November 24, 2008 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  25. KLEE

    Yay for the Liberals!! If being a Republican is acting ugly and negative all the time then its the Liberal Life for me.......sung to the tune Hi Ho Hi Ho its off to work we go......

    November 24, 2008 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
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