Joe Biden announces he will not run for US president

Vice President Joe Biden says grieving over son's death affects his decision to not run for president

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden announces he will not seek the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination with President Barack Obama (L) and his wife Jill (R) at his side in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington October 21, 2015.

US Vice President Joe Biden has announced that he will not run for presidency as a Democrat candidate in the upcoming presidential elections.

His announcement on Wednesday has put an end to months of speculation over whether or not he would challenge his party’s frontrunner Hillary Clinton to replace outgoing President Barack Obama.

The 72-year-old veteran Democrat admitted that the death of his son Beau, who passed away after battling with brain cancer in May, affected his decision to not announce his candidacy.

However, in his speech in the Rose Garden, Biden indicated that he will continue to play an active role in politics.

"While I will not be a candidate, I will not be silent," Biden said. "I intend to speak out clearly and forcefully to influence as much as I can where we stand as a party and where we need to go as a nation."

Biden’s decision not to run leaves Hillary Clinton facing only one prime candidate from the Democrats, Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont.

Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley and former Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee are also running for Democratic nomination, but are not expected to mount a serious challenge for presidency.

Clinton remains favourite to represent the party in the November 2016 elections, despite slipping in the polls lately over her using a private email server for confidential messages.

Nevertheless, Clinton’s outstanding performance in a Democratic debate earlier this month increased her popularity by 10 percent to 52 percent following the brief dip, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll.

Sanders, meanwhile, enjoys 27 percent of support, the poll results showed.

Had Biden chosen to run, he would have struggled to generate the necessary funds to launch his campaign in the state of Iowa by Feb. 1 and increase his approval rate from 13 percent, he admitted.

"Unfortunately, I believe we're out of time, the time necessary to mount a winning campaign for the nomination," Biden said.

"The process doesn't respect or much care about filing deadlines or debate or primaries and caucuses. But I also know I couldn't do this if the family isn't ready."

Biden had previously ran for presidential election in 1988 and 2008, but on both occasions had pulled out.

TRTWorld and agencies