Former Vice President Joe Biden may not be a public servant anymore, but it certainly hasn't hindered his efforts at curing cancer. On Wednesday, Biden was among the honorees at ResearchAmerica's annual Advocacy Awards event for his "commitment to accelerating cancer research as the driving force behind the White House Cancer Moonshot," according to ResearchAmerica's website.
Biden has made it his life's mission to cure cancer, a disease that affected his family. In 2015, Biden's son Beau died of brain cancer at 46, and the grief from his death was among the chief reasons the former Veep declined to run for president in 2016.
Speaking after receiving the Gordon and Llura Gund Leadership Award, Biden told the audience that curing cancer was the "one bipartisan thing left in America." He added, "Not a joke. Not a joke. And we have some really, really responsible, informed and persuasive leaders in the Republican Party."
But, he also lamented the intense political partisanship today. Biden spoke of the award he received last year with former Speaker John Boehner for their efforts at bipartisanship, and expressed bewilderment that they were awarded for working together.
"The idea that Notre Dame would say, 'Joe Biden and John Boehner, they actually get along so we should give them an award?' There's something really wrong with what we've allowed to have happen here," Biden said. "I thought that's what we're supposed to be."
According to the Pew Research Center's 2016 findings, Republicans and Democrats have more negative views of each other than any other point in almost 25 years. A poll by the Wishbone app last year found that among young people, 47 percent would not date someone with opposing political beliefs; and 36 percent say their parents would be concerned about their partners' political affiliation. And it's likely safe to say that politics have become all the more polarized of late.
But Biden's words serve as an important reminder that there shouldn't be anything remarkable about bipartisanship — just look at him and Boehner.
Cover image via Evan El-Amin / Shutterstock.com
(H/T: Huffington Post)