Joe Biden’s campaign event Sunday afternoon in the gymnasium of Alvirne High School in Hudson, NH opened on an emotional note with the former vice-president dedicating a large portion of the beginning of his speech to speaking about family members he had previously lost, specifically his son Beau.
Biden related this back to the passage of the Affordable Care Act during the Obama administration, and how he often thought about what he would have done if he had run out of insurance and money, while his son was sick. “What the hell would I do?” he said.
Among the topics in Biden’s wide-ranging speech was a pledge to double the number of school nurses. “We have a president who doesn’t think in terms of people,” he said.
Another topic that Biden brought up was his history with the media and women, specifically his tendency to hug women.
“They’re not hugging me because they love me, they’re hugging me because they’re afraid,” he said, referencing the challenges that they are facing in their personal lives.
There were a few other moments where Biden told the audience something and then immediately acknowledged the large number of press in attendance.
This happened when Biden said that he could “take Trump, physically and mentally,” and then immediately told the media that he was joking. He then followed that statement by saying: “I challenge him to a golf game, if he carries his own bag.”
He also acknowledged both the press and the audience, who were circled around him in the gym, a second time, later in his speech. “This is complicated stuff, and you can read it the wrong way,” he said.
During the question period, a woman in the crowd asked a question about Puerto Rico and how Biden plans to be there for its citizens.
He told the woman that he would like to provide “significant opportunity to get the benefit of having employment moved to Puerto Rico to provide manufacturing capacity.”
“My generic point is, that the contribution is enormous, that could be made, and the investment should be significant. We should do more than throw paper towels at people,” he added.
Biden’s question period continued longer than his organizers presumably expected. Biden was told that his last question would be at 5 p.m., about an hour after his appearance began, but actually took his last question at 5:45 p.m.