Story highlights
Joe Biden’s announcement ended feverish speculation that increasingly consumed Washington
Biden decided against a White House run on Tuesday night

The ceremonial venue, the stolen glances at a teleprompter and word that President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden would appear told the reporters all they needed to know.

Biden used the space reserved for the most ornate and somber presidential theater to announce he wasn’t running for President, suddenly ending the feverish speculation that increasingly consumed Washington.
This account of the swift and poignant end of Biden’s presidential prospects is based on interviews with multiple friends and aides of the Vice President. It illustrates the excruciating process he went through over the past several months to determine whether he could mount a winning campaign after the death of his eldest son this summer and take on front-runner Hillary Clinton. And it shows that for all the groundwork Biden appeared to be laying, his decision not to run seemed to come suddenly.
Biden told the gathered reporters on Wednesday that he had already warned — in a soul-bearing interview with Stephen Colbert’s show — that his family’s grief over the loss of Beau Biden could cause his window for a credible White House run to close.

“I’ve concluded it has closed,” Biden said simply before a clutch of senior administration officials including national security advisor Susan Rice and White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough, who were hurriedly rounded up to witness Biden end his presidential dreams.

Broad outreach
But Biden’s broad outreach to a lifetime of political allies and associates in recent weeks left many convinced he would indeed mount an unlikely bid to become the oldest man ever elected president. Just this week, Biden reinforced that impression by staking out political ground, jabbing Clinton and sharpening rhetoric that seemed to augur a run.
READ: How Hillary Clinton benefits from Joe Biden’s decision
A senior Biden aide confided that the vice president only made his final decision on Tuesday evening as the clock raced towards filing deadlines and milestones on the road to early nominating contests that he could no longer ignore.
Ultimately, according a source familiar with Biden’s thinking, the Vice President became hung up on a couple of key points.

First: The emotional marker Biden laid in his Colbert appearance — one of the most heart-rending and honest glimpses into a politician’s pscyhe in …Read More

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