While speaking Thursday night at Colgate Gate University in Hamilton, N.Y., former Vice President Joe Bidden revealed that he regrets not being president, as he strongly believes that had he run last year, he could have defeated then-GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump.
“I had planned on running for president and although it would have been a very difficult primary, I think I could have won,” he said. “I don’t know, maybe not. But I thought I could have won.”
“I had a lot of data and I was fairly confident that if I were the Democratic Party’s nominee, I had a better than even chance of being president,” he added.
Some data does indeed show Biden may be correct in his assessment.
Joe Biden Admits To Regretting He’s Not President, Predicts He Could Have Won Election
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When the presidential election first began heating up during mid-2015, for instance, Biden was out-polling Democrat primary candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders. Not only was he performing significantly better than Clinton in general election matchups, but he was beating both Clinton and Sanders in favorability ratings.
Moreover, polls from as recently as last October showed Biden easily crushing Trump in a general election matchup.
Despite the positive polling data, however, the former vice president ultimately opted to stay out of the election, due in large part to the grief he still felt over his son Beau Biden’s death in 2015 from cancer.
He explained Thursday that he “just couldn’t do it” [run for his president] due to his son’s death.
“I lost part of my soul,” he said. “Do I regret not being president? Yes. Do I regret not running for president, in light of what was going on in my life at the time? No, I don’t regret it. I made the right decision.”
He added that he chose not to run because he felt that he would not be able to give 100 percent to his “attention and dedication” to the election effort.
It should be noted that what Biden said Thursday about him being able to defeat Trump was in contradiction to what he claimed last October, when he disputed claims that he could win the presidential election.
“Couldn’t win,” he told CBS News correspondent Norah O’Donnell at the time. “I’ll be very blunt. If I thought we could’ve put together the campaign that our supporters deserve and our contributors deserved, I would have gone ahead and done it.”