After months of flirting with a potential presidential bid, Vice President Joe Biden ultimately decided to opt out because he didn’t have the time to mount a serious campaign.
In a preview of a “60 Minutes” interview airing on Sunday evening, Biden described the scene from Tuesday night – when he told his family that he would not be mounting a third campaign for president.
“I came home and Hunter, our son was upstairs with mom, with Jill,” he said, referencing his wife, Dr. Jill Biden.
“And I walked in and I said, ‘You know, I just don’t think there’s time. I’ve just decided I don’t think we can run the kind of campaign we have to run to be able to win.
“And I remember Jill just got up off the couch, gave me a big hug, and said, ‘I think you’re right.'”
In Sunday’s interview, Jill Biden said she was disappointed that her husband didn’t run, saying that he would’ve been the “best president.”
“I think I was disappointed. You know, like I said, in the beginning, I mean, I thought Joe would be a great president,” Jill Biden said. “And you know I’ve seen his – in the 40 years we’ve been together – I’ve seen, you know, the strength of his character, his optimism, his hope.”
“I believed he would’ve been the best president.”
Wednesday’s announcement that Biden would not seek the nomination followed month’s of speculation about the vice president’s intentions.
Though Biden had started contrasting himself with Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) in speeches and had begun to lay the groundwork for a campaign, he still would’ve faced difficult obstacles even if he’d been able to gain some traction in the polls.
Biden was months behind Clinton and Sanders in fundraising, and had not assembled a campaign infrastructure. While the Clinton campaign has hundreds of paid staffers, Biden would’ve needed to start virtually from scratch.