Biden makes first public appearance in months on Memorial Dayby Justin Wise
Former Vice President Joe Biden marked Memorial Day on Monday by participating in a wreath-laying ceremony at a local veteran’s memorial near his Delaware home, in what was his first time in public after weeks of self-isolation amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The presumptive Democratic presidential nominee had not left the area around his Wilmington, Del., residence since mid-March, when the pandemic put an indefinite pause on in-person campaigning.
Biden, wearing a black face mask, was accompanied by his wife, Jill Biden, on his trip to the Veterans Memorial Park at the Delaware Memorial Bridge in New Castle. The Bidens placed a a wreath of white flowers at the site.
“Never forget the sacrifices that these men and women made. Never, ever, forget," Joe Biden told reporters after being asked if he had a message for Americans on Memorial Day.
He added that “it feels good to be out of my house,” according to Reuters. The news service noted that he saluted about dozen veterans and thanked them for their service while observing social distancing practices.
Biden's 2020 White House bid shifted to an entirely virtual campaign in March because of the coronavirus. The former vice president has hosted campaign events online from his home and regularly appeared on news programs to address the current crisis.
Neither he nor President Trump has held an in-person rally since the outbreak caused states to impose restrictions on mass gatherings.
Trump has picked up his travel in recent weeks, visiting Michigan, Arizona and Pennsylvania to tour facilities producing equipment such as ventilators.
The president also participated in a wreath-laying ceremony at the Arlington National Cemetery on Monday and is scheduled to visit the Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine in Baltimore later this afternoon.
Biden has repeatedly criticized Trump's handling of the coronavirus outbreak. After Trump played golf over the weekend, Biden said it was an example of him being unprepared for the job.
"The presidency is about a lot more than tweeting from your golf cart," he tweeted. "It requires taking on the ultimate responsibility for the biggest decisions in the world. Donald Trump simply wasn’t prepared for that. I promise you I will be."