Wednesday, July 29, 2015

VP Joe Biden Eulogizes Sen. Arlen Specter as loyal friend

Vice President Joe Biden eulogized the late U.S. Sen. Arlen Specter Tuesday afternoon as a friend who remained loyal in tough times. Biden, speaking at Specter's funeral at Har Zion Temple in Penn Valley, said political allies are easy to come by when times are good. Plenty of people in politics "calculate their friendship with you in terms of the impact on them and their ambition or how they want to be thought of."

VP Joe Biden Eulogizes Sen. Arlen Specter as loyal friend

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 Vice President Joe Biden, second from right, arrives at Har Zion Temple
Vice President Joe Biden, second from right, arrives at Har Zion Temple Matt Rourke

Vice President Joe Biden eulogized the late U.S. Sen. Arlen Specter Tuesday afternoon as a friend who remained loyal in tough times.  Biden, speaking at Specter's funeral at Har Zion Temple in Penn Valley, said political allies are easy to come by when times are good. Plenty of people in politics "calculate their friendship with you in terms of the impact on them and their ambition or how they want to be thought of."

But not Specter, Biden said.  "Arlen reminds me of an old saying: A friend is someone who walks in and when others walk out. Arlen always walked in at moments that were of great consequence."

That was a lesson learned, said Biden, noting that he and President Obama are in a close election.  Biden was due to campaign Tuesday in Colorado and Nevada, two "toss-up" states in the election, he said.  He skipped those election spots, explaining why directly to Specter's widow, former Philadelphia City Councilwoman Joan Specter.

"I ask myself frequently Joan -- no malarkey, that's an Irish thing -- what would Arlen do?," Biden said, drawing laughs from the standing-room only crowd of more than 1,000 people. "Arlen wouldn't have thought about it. He would have been there for me."

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William Bender, a Drexel graduate who landed at the Daily News in 2007, has covered everything from South Philly mobsters to doomsday hucksters. He occasionally writes about local food trucks and always eats everything on his plate, whether it be a bloody rib eye or a corrupt politician. E-mail tips to benderw@phillynews.com
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David Gambacorta, has been a reporter with the Daily News since 2005, covering crime, police corruption and all of the other bizarre things that happen in Philadelphia. Now he’s covering the 2015 mayor’s race, because he enjoys a good circus just as much as the next guy. He’s always looking to get a cup of coffee. Send news tips and other musings on life to gambacd@phillynews.com
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