By firstname.lastname@example.org (Marguerite Ward,May Teng)
Biden checks a lot of boxes as your typical politician. The 78-year-old has a receding hairline, marked crow’s-feet, white skin, and whiter hair. He stands at 6 feet and flashes a bright toothy smile. Politically, he’s viewed as a moderate Democrat.
But a closer look into the life of the president-elect reveals a man deeply shaped by sadness, comfortable with vulnerability, and in possession of a unique ability to connect with others. And yet, over his nearly five decades in politics, he’s faced controversy, scandals, and gaffes, some of which have led to national discussions over Biden’s fit for certain offices.
Insider spoke with several former colleagues of Biden, including former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and official White House photographer David Lienemann, in addition to leadership experts like the “Grit” author and psychologist Angela Duckworth and the writer Evan Osnos, to get a close-up look at what they say are the strengths and weaknesses of America’s new leader.
- Joe Biden will begin leading the US on Wednesday amid a pandemic, an opioid crisis, and massive political instability.
- The president-elect presents himself as a conventional leader with a moderate stance toward policy.
- Yet deep grief, empathy, adversity, and controversy have all informed his leadership.