Joe Biden's Children and Grandkids Introduce Presidential Nominee on Final Night of DNC
Joe Biden's children Ashley and Hunter took a moment to remember their late brother Beau as they introduced their father as the Democratic presidential nominee for the first time on Thursday night.
Biden's children's message, delivered after the nominee's grandchildren lovingly spoke about him, set the stage for their 77-year-old father to deliver the closing remarks of the 2020 Democratic National Convention.
The unprecedented, all-virtual convention took place without any crowds this week due to the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
"We want to tell you what kind of president our dad will be. He will be tough and honest, caring and principled. He'll listen, be there when you need him. He'll tell you the truth even when you don't want to hear it. He'll never let you down," Ashley, 39, and Hunter, 50, said, trading off lines in the video.
"He'll be rock steady. The strongest shoulder you can ever lean on. He'll beam with pride every time you succeed. He'll make your grandkids feel that what they've got to say matters. He'll treat everyone with respect no matter who you are," they said.
"He'll get up no matter how many times he's been knocked down. He'll be the worst enemy any bully ever saw," they continued of their dad. "He'll be the best friend you've ever had. He'll love you with all of his heart. And if you give him your cell phone number, he's going to call it. How do we know? Because he's been that way our whole lives. He's been a great father. And we think he'll be a great president."
Speaking about their late brother Beau, the siblings said: "Beau isn't with us any longer, but he's still very much alive in our hearts and we can still hear his strong voice just like it was yesterday."
Beau, the former attorney general of Delaware, died in 2015 from brain cancer. His infant sister, Naomi, died in the same 1972 car crash that killed Biden's first wife, Neilia, who was 30 at the time of the accident.
The Biden family's tragedies — and how the presidential nominee responded to them throughout his life — were one of the main pillars of his character that many Democratic leaders focused in on during the DNC this week, a presentation aimed at highlighting how the longtime lawmaker can lead in times of crisis.
Along with Ashley and Hunter, Biden's granddaughters also appeared in a video shown at the DNC before Biden's speech, where they talked about his love of ice cream and his fondness for frequent phone calls to stay in touch.
Biden's family has been under the spotlight from both political parties throughout the 2020 campaign.
President Donald Trump centered his criticism on Hunter, an investment adviser, throughout 2019 by continuing to push an already disproven conspiracy theory about his political rival's son.
The president's vested interest in the debunked conspiracy led to his impeachment last December, after the House of Representatives charged Trump with abuse of power and obstruction of Congress when an investigation discovered that the president had bribed Ukraine by withholding military funds until the country's president agreed to announce he was investigating Hunter for the already disproven conspiracy.
“I would never have been able to predict that Donald Trump would have picked me out as the tip of the spear against the one person they believe can beat them,” Hunter told The New Yorker last year.
In the same New Yorker story that year, Hunter opened up about struggles with substance abuse and his personal life in the years following his brother's 2015 death. With his parents' "complete support," Hunter had a brief relationship with Beau's widow, Hallie, before they separated near the end of 2017.
Hunter is now married to South African filmmaker Melissa Cohen, whom he wed in 2019. She gave birth to their son in March, while Hunter also has a child with a woman in Arkansas who was born in 2018. (That woman sued Hunter over paternity, saying in court papers he had ignored their baby.)
Biden's daughter, Ashley, a social worker who is the former executive director of the Delaware Center for Justice, is close with her siblings and made appearances at rallies for her father throughout the 2020 campaign.