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tv   President Obama Awards the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Vice President...  CSPAN  January 12, 2017 3:48pm-4:19pm EST

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consider his nomination because he was appointed by a democratic president. it's outrageous. outrageous. i noted yesterday and the day before the disparate treatment shall we say of afforded by chairman chuck grassley, is he here? [applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, the president and vice president of the united states area. [applause] [applause]
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>>. [applause] [cheering] >>. [applause] all right, that's enough. [applause] welcome to the
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white house, everybody. as i have already delivered my farewell address i will try to be well-adjusted but i just want to get full together to pay tribute to somebody who's not only been by my side the duration of this amazing journey but somebody who has devoted his entire professional life to service to this country. that's the best vice president americas ever had, joe biden. [applause] this also gives the internet one last chance to talk about our bromance.
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this has been quite a ride. it was 8 and a half years ago i chose joe to be be my vice president. there has not been a single moment since that time i've doubted the wisdom of that decision. he's the best possible choice not just for me but for the american people. he's an extraordinary man with an extraordinary career in public service. this is somebody the people of delaware sent to the senate as quickly as they possibly could. i watched it at age 29, more than a dozen years of peace he served as chair or ranking member of the judiciary and foreign relations committee, domestically he championed landmark legislations that make our communities safer and protect our women from
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violence. internationally, his wisdom relationships that shaped our nation's response during the fall of the berlin wall and terrorism, iraq, afghanistan. for the past eight years he could not have been a more devoted or effective partner in the progress that we've made. he helped to make college more affordable, revitalize american manufacturing with his task force, he suited up for our cancer moon shots, giving hope to millions of americans touched by this disease. he led our efforts to combat gunviolence . rooted out any possible misappropriations that might have occurred under the recovery act, works as well as just about any stimulus
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project has ever worked in this country. visited college after college and made friends with lady gaga for its on us campaign against campus sexual assault and when the pope visited, joe was even kind enough to let me talk for a minute as well. behind the scenes, his honest counsel has made me a better president and abetter commander-in-chief . in the situation room, through our weekly lunches, through our puddles after everybody else had cleared out of the room, he's been unafraid to give it to me straight, even if we disagree. in fact, especially when we disagree. and all of this makes in my belief the finest vice president we've ever seen and i also think he's been a lion of american history.
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the best part is he's going to work close to the finish. in the years ahead as a citizen he will continue to build on that legacy internationally and domestically. together, the voice of vision and reason and optimism, he had a love for people and he will leave that spirit and vision as we continue to try to make our world safer and ensure that everybody gets a fair shot in this country so all told, it's a pretty remarkable legacy. it is as joe once said a big deal. [laughter] [applause] but we all know that when a
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gentleman has worked, the list of accomplishments on his resume does not capture the full measure of joe biden. have i not mentioned anthrax yet oraviators ? literally? full, they don't just feel like they know joe the politician, they feel like they know the person. what makes him laugh, his beliefs, what he cares about, where he came from. pretty much every time he speaks, he treats us with wisdom the nuns who taught him in grade school or an old senate colleague but of course most frequently cited, catherine and joseph senior, his mom and dad. no one is better than you and you are better and nobody.
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bravery resides in every heart and yours is fierce and clear. when you get knocked down joey, get up . get up. [applause] get up. that's where you got those broad shoulders, that's where he got the biden heart. through his life in trial after trial he has never once forgotten the values or fiber that made him who he is. he built his faith in god and america and his friends and all of us. joe loves the auto workers whose livelihood he kept safe and through the pain of having to tell his kids he had lost his mother. he talked about hope and opportunity for our children
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as a father who drove the rails home every night to talk his kids into bed. joe speaks up for the little guy, his boys who stand in front of the mirror. emerson, pinning the muscles in his face to distinguish the debilitating stutter. joe taught his goldstar families who lost a hero. another father of an american veteran whose fate had been tested and was forced to wander through the darkness himself knows who to lean on to find the light. that's joe biden. he is resilient and loyal and humble servant but most of all, a family man. it starts with jill, captain of the vice squad. only the second lady in our history to keep her regular day job. [applause] jill says teaching
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is what she does, it's who she is. today after joe and i were inaugurated in 2009 she was back in the classroom. that's why when our administration work to strengthen community colleges we look to jill to lead the way. she has also traveled the world to boost education and empowerment for women. and as a blue star mom, she's worked to honor our military families will go down in history as one of the most laughing and powerful efforts of this administration. like joe, jill has worked is only part of the story.
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she seems to walk this earth so lightly. spreads her joy so freely. and it reminds us that although we are in a serious business, we don't have to take ourselves too seriously. he's quick to laugh or with a practical joke, disguising herself as a server at a party she once hosted to lighten the mood. she wants came in the overhead compartment of air force to to scare the senior staff. because why not? she seems to have a sixth sense of when to send a note of encouragement to a friend or staffer , a simple thank you or bouquet of roses. she's one of the most genuine people i've met in politics my entire life. she's kind and generous and caring and funny and that's why joe is proud to introduce himself as joe biden's husband. to see them together is to see what real love looks like. throughthick , thin, good
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times and bad. it's an all-american love story and joe once surprised joe by painting parts on his office windows for valentine's day. and then there are these biden kids and grandkids, they are everywhere. [laughter] they are all good-looking. hunter and ashley who live out that family greed of raising good families and looking out for the least of our brothers and sisters . joe is watching over us with those broad soldier shoulders and mighty heart himself, a man who left a beautiful agassi and inspired an entire nation. naomi and then in the daisy, natalie and little hunter, grandchildren who are the light of joe's i. whenever he seems to bust out the gun around the pool, it's the family that built this country.
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that's why myfamily is so proud to call ourselves honorary biden . the way he put it, because i have to. to quote an anonymous poet and shamus haney was taken, think where men's glory most begins and ends. today my glory was i had such friends. away from the camera, jill and michelle have each other's backs just as much as when they are out championing our troops. the girls are close, best friends at school, come fighting each other for vacations and sleepovers, even though our terms are open, one of the greatest gifts of the past eight years as we are forever bonded as a family. i know the obama's are not the only ones who feel like an honorary biden because joe's heart has radiated around this room. you see it in the enduring
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friendships he's forged with folks of every stripe and background on capitol hill. you see it in the way his eyes light up when he finds somebody in a worldwide to or the tiniest towns in delaware. you see it in the incredible loyalty of his staff, the team knows that family always comes before work because joe tells them so every day. the team that brought his humble service here in these links where there have been no turf wars between our staffs because everybody here it's understood we are all on the same team and we share the same outlook. just cooperation and calm robbery and that is rare. and finally you see joe's heart in the way he consoles families dealing with cancer backstage after an event .
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he meets kids fighting through a stutter of their own. he gives them his private phone number and keeps in touch with them. to know joe biden is to know the love without pretense, service without self regard and as one of his long-time colleagues in the senate, he once said if you can't admire joe biden as a person, you got a problem. he's as good a man as god ever created. so joe, for your faith in your fellow americans, for your love of country, for your lifetime of service that will endure through the generations, i'd like to ask the military aides to join us on stage. for the final time as president, i am pleased to
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award our nation's highest civilian honor, the presidential medal of freedom. [applause] and for the first and only time in my presidency i will bestow this metal with an additional level of veneration, and
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honor of my three most recent successors but the first of only three others, pope john paul ii, president ronald reagan and general colin powell. please and gentlemen i am a proud to for the presidential medal of freedom to do with distinction to my brother joe biden junior. may you please read the citation. >> vice president joseph r biden junior, a career of public service spanning nearly half a century, vice president joseph r biden junior has left a mark on every part of our nation, fighting for a strong middle-class, a fair judicial system and a smarter foreign policy. biting unyielding support for our troops, combating crime and violence against women, leading a quest to cure cancer and safeguarding the landmarks of american recovery and reinvestment act of corruption. >>
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father and grandfather. we thank him for his lifetime of service on behalf of the united states of america. [applause]
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[applause] [applause] [applause] thank you. thank you.
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[applause] thank you. you're fired. [laughter] to the press, he is my chief of staff. i had no inkling. i thought we were coming over michelle, for you jill and barack and i and a couple staff to toast one another and say what an incredible journey it has been. mr. president, you got right the
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part about my leaning on jill, but i've also leaned on you and a lot of people in this room. i look around the room and i see great friends like ted kaufman who has so much wisdom, guys like mel, i look around here and i'm startled. i keep seeing people i didn't expect. look at my new boss over there. but you know, i get a lot of press credit i don't deserve, to state the obvious. i've always had somebody to lean on. from back in that time in 1972 when the accident happened,
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eileen don, and i mean this in a little literal sense, i leaned on my sons beau and hunter. i continue to lean on hunter who continues, in a bizarre kind of way, to raise me. i leaned on him and mr. president, you observed early on that neither one of my boys, when they would walk up to the room they would say dad ,-comma what can i get you ,-comma what do you need. then jill came along and she saved our life. no man deserves one great love let alone to. everyone knows i am her husband and i love her more than she
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loves me, for good reason. she gave me the most precious gift, the love of my life, the life of my love, my daughter ashley. we continue to lean on the family. mr. president you were kidding me once, you heard in the preparation for the two debates, the vice presidential debates i had only had to that beau and hunt would be the last people in the room and bo would say look at me dad, remember homebase. when the secret service can tell you, mr. president, that bow and hunt and ashley continue to have to corral me. we were at the national park and i was climbing on top of the bridge to jump off the bridge with a bunch of young kids and i hear my sons yelling, dad, get
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down, now, now. i started laughing so hard i couldn't stop. i said i was just gonna do a flip, a full gainer off here. they said, dad, the secret secret service doesn't want you up there, dad. look at me, dad. we've never never figured out who the father is in this family mr. president, you know that with good reason, there is no power in the vice presidency. as a matter of fact, i just did for nancy pelosi's daughter, they had me read the provisions relating to the vice presidency in the constitution. there is no inherent power, nor should there be. so mr. president, you have more than kept your commitment to me
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by saying you wanted me to help govern. the presidents, people don't often hear it, but when you say can you get jo to do something, he says i don't to his schedule and he doesn't do mine. everything you've asked me to do, mr. president, you have trusted me to do, and that is a remarkable thing. i don't think, i see the president of georgetown here as well, i don't think as the presidential and vice presidential scholars that kind of relationship has existed. for real, it's all you mr. pres. the reason why, when you send me around the world nothing is
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missed between the cup and the lip because they know when i speak i speak for you. it's been easy because we not only have the same political philosophy and ideology, but i tell everyone and i've told them from the beginning and i'm not saying this to reciprocate, i have never known a president, and few people i have ever met in my whole life, i can count on less than one hand, who have the integrity and the decency and the sense of other people's needs like you do. i know you are upset when i told the story that hunter and i were worried that bow would, as a matter of of honor, decide he had to step down while he was fighting his battle because he
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had aphasia and he was losing his ability to speak. he didn't want ever to be in the position, to him everything was about duty and honor. i said he may resign, i don't know, i just have a feeling he may and hunter and i talked about this. i said he doesn't have any other income, but we are alright because hunter is there and i can sell the house. we were having a private lunch like we did once a week and he got up, grabbed me by the shoulders, looked me in the eye and said don't you sell that house. you love that house. i said it's no big deal, mr. president. he said we will give you the money. promise me, you won't sell that house. i remember with ashley, mr. president, ashley was in the elevator and the elevator plummeted to the ground.
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immediately the service was worried that she may have been badly hurt. i got up to take the call, and you didn't let up until you are sure your service followed through mh were everything was all right. you know, mr. president, you know we kid about marrying up, we both did, and that kind of thing, but the truth is, i said this to michelle last night, michelle is the finest first lady in my view that has ever served in the office. there are other great first ladies, but i genuinely mean it. [applause] [applause]
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>> when i got to meet michelle's brother, and he told me about how you were raised, and i got got to know and love your mom, if your mom were 15 years older, she could have been my mom. literally. the way you were raised in the way we were raised, it wasn't any different. i knew this decision to join you, which is the greatest honor of my life, was the right decision. on the night we had to go except the nomination, when we were formally nominated at the convention, and again who was 18 years old, she was ten years old and she came to me and said pop, is is it okay that the room that we are in, that we have the beds taken out.
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i said why. he said maybe the obama's girl and your brother's children would like to come down and sleep and sleeping bags. >> the senate has been in recess. the lawmakers have returned and now we will take you back to the senate floor, live on c-span2 imd behind the drug trade. unfortunately it's happening in all of our states, including my home state of ohio. and it's growing as a problem. a up come of weeks ago two people were arrested in my hometown of cincinnati in connection with sex trafficking. police charged a woman with luring an undersage girl to commit a sex act with a 56-year-old man. that was two weeks after police just up the road broke up what they said was a sex trafficking ring in a hotel. police said the two men and two women rented two rooms at a hotel, paying cash and forced four different women to perform sex acts. they were given crack cocaine


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