Joe Biden says he doesn’t ‘like’ Barack Obama – he ‘loves’ him

‘I don’t like him, I love him. And it’s a mutual thing. We have each other’s backs, and I’ll be there for him for anything he ever wants,’ says Vice President

May Bulman@maybulman
Saturday 14 January 2017 15:29
Biden on Obama: 'I don't like him, I love him'

Out-going US Vice-President Joe Biden has made a heartfelt admission about President Barack Obama, saying: “I don’t like him, I love him.”

During an interview with MSNBC, Mr Biden opened up on his close friendship with Mr Obama, who he has served under for the past eight years.

After speaking at length about the closeness of the two families, describing the friendship between their daughters and his admiration for Michelle Obama, Mr Biden summarised his relationship with the President in a few words.

“I don’t like him, I love him,” he said.

“And it’s a mutual thing. We have each other’s backs, and I’ll be there for him for anything he ever wants.”

Earlier in the interview, Mr Biden discussed Mr Obama’s reaction when he heard he was considering selling his house after his son, Beau, was diagnosed with brain cancer.

“We were having the private lunch we have once a week, and he grabbed me and said: ‘Joe, promise me you won’t sell the house. I’ll give you the money,’” he said.

“So this is real. And I feel the same way about he and his children.”

The Vice-President also revealed that the reason Mr Obama’s youngest daughter Sasha wasn’t at his farewell speech was because she studying for a chemistry exam with his granddaughter, who he said was her “best friend of eight years”.

“This has become a family,” he added.

“And Michelle. I think Michelle is the finest first lady in history – and I mean in history.

“There have been plenty of great first ladies, but she is so smart, so decent, so inclusive. She conveys America.”

The touching words came days after Mr Obama paid tribute to the Vice-President during his farewell speech on Wednesday, saying his appointment was “the best” decision he had made and referring to him as his “brother”.

He said: “You were the first decision I made as a nominee and it was the best.

“Not just because you have been a great Vice-President, but because in the bargain I gained a brother.

“We love you and Jill like family and your friendship has been one of the great joys of our life.”

The outgoing President then surprised Mr Biden a day later when he awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom with Distinction, the highest civilian honour, in a surprise tribute at the White House.

Mr Obama celebrated the long-time Delaware senator, describing him as a “lion of American history” and the “best Vice-President America’s ever had”.

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