Information provided by the candidates’ campaign.
Meet Barack Obama
President Obama was born in Hawaii on August 4th, 1961, to a father from Kenya and a mother from Kansas. Growing up, he was also raised by his grandfather, who served in Patton’s army, and his grandmother, who worked her way up from the secretarial pool to become middle management at a local bank.
After working his way through college with the help of scholarships and student loans, President Obama moved to Chicago, where he worked as an organizer to help rebuild communities devastated by the closure of local steel plants.
He went on to Harvard Law School, where he became the first African-American president of the Harvard Law Review. Upon graduation, he took a job teaching constitutional law at the University of Chicago. He also remained active in his community, leading a drive that registered more than 150,000 voters in Illinois leading up to the 1992 election.
Barack Obama was first elected to the Illinois State Senate in 1996. During his time in Springfield, he passed the first major ethics reform in 25 years, cut taxes for working families, and expanded health care for children and their parents. Elected to the U.S. Senate in 2004, he reached across the aisle to pass the farthest-reaching lobbyist reform in a generation, lock up the world’s most dangerous weapons, and bring transparency to government by tracking federal spending online.
As President, Barack Obama has dedicated himself to putting Americans back to work and restoring economic security to middle-class families. He’s been driven by the basic values that make our country great: America prospers when we’re all in it together, when hard work pays off and responsibility is rewarded, and when everyone—from Main Street to Wall Street—does their fair share and plays by the same rules.
Vice President Joe Biden was born in Scraton, Pennsylvania on November 20, 1942, to Joesph Robinette Biden Sr. and Catherine Eugenia Finnegan. He was the first of four siblings in a Catholic family. When Biden took office on January 3, 1973, at age 30, he became the sixth-youngest senator in U.S. history. In 1974, freshman Senator Biden was named one of the 200 Faces for the Future by Time magazine.
Biden was subsequently elected to six additional terms, in the elections of 1978, 1984, 1990, 1996, 2002, and 2008, usually getting about 60 percent of the vote. He did not face strong opposition; Governor Pierre S. du Pont, IV chose not to run against him in 1984. Biden spent 28 years as a junior senator due to the two-year seniority of his Republican colleague William V. Roth, Jr. After Roth was defeated for re-election by Tom Carper in 2000, Biden became Delaware’s senior senator. He then became the longest-serving senator in Delaware history. In May 1999, Biden set the mark for youngest senator to cast 10,000 votes.
Biden became the 47th Vice President of the United States on January 20, 2009, when he was inaugurated alongside President Barack Obama. He succeeded Dick Cheney. Biden is the first United States Vice President from Delaware and the first Roman Catholic to attain that office.Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens administered the oath of office to Biden.