Vice President Joe Biden pulled no punches when he told delegates at the Democratic National Convention what he thought of Donald Trump’s claims that he understands the middle class.
“That’s a bunch of malarkey,” Biden said to the boisterous cheers from the audience.
The comment drew cheers outside of the arena too, as members of the New York and Virginia Delegation at the Loews Philadelphia Hotel lobby watched on a projector screen.
“This guy doesn’t have a clue about the middle class, not a clue,” Biden said.
The audience took his lead.
“Not a clue!” they chanted.
[A Bittersweet Night for Biden] Biden’s speech was a goodbye of sorts, but many Democrats were hopeful he would still have a voice in the public sphere.
Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said he looked forward to seeing Biden on the campaign trail.
“He has done a great job trying to help us take back the Senate,” he said. “And I believe he’ll continue to work hard on that the next several months.”
Schumer said Wednesday night that he expected to see Biden continue working on the Cancer Moonshot.
Biden decided against running for president after his son, Beau, died of cancer. President Barack Obama put him in charge of efforts to cure cancer during his 2016 State of the Union Address.
Biden has been a fixture in Washington for more than 40 years.
He was elected a senator for Delaware in 1972, a bad year for Democrats. It was the year that Richard Nixon won the presidency in a landslide.
[Biden Gets Pope’s Support for Cancer ‘Moonshot’] Biden alluded to his political longevity Wednesday night.
“I am more optimistic today than when I was a 29-year old kid in the senate,” he said.
After a long career in the Senate, Biden was picked to be Obama’s running mate in 2008. As Obama’s vice president, he served critical function as a liaison between the White House and Congress.
In his speech Wednesday, Biden reminisced about when he accepted the Democratic Party’s nomination to be vice president.
“And every single day since then, is been the honor of our lives for Jill and me,” he said. “Every day, we’ve been grateful to Barack and Michelle for asking them to join us in this incredible journey.”
Bob Gilligan, the former speaker of the Delaware House of Representatives, said Biden’s compassion was an example.
“He was compassionate then. He is compassionate now,” he said. “The only way he’s changed is that he became wiser.”
Gilligan called Biden “a role model for Americans, especially the way he’s dealt with personal tragedy.”
Former Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell said there might be a future in service for Biden.
“Probably more of a role as a special envoy, because no one is more highly regarded around the world, no American is more highly regarded around the world than Joe Biden,” Rendell said.
Sen. Chris Coons of Delaware, said he was sure Biden would be a great resource for Clinton in the future.
“His international network of contacts and resources from his 36 years as the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, his eight years as vice president are unmatched,” he said.
Bridget Bowman, Niels Lesniewski, Alex Roarty and Simone Pathe contributed to this report