Statement by the Vice President on the Passing of Wendell Ford
Jill and I were very sorry to hear of the passing of Senator Wendell Ford.
He was one of the most effective legislative leaders I’ve ever worked with throughout my entire career. His philosophy was summed up when he said, “why make a speech when you can sit down with your colleagues and work something out?”
He always took care of Kentucky, but never lost sight of the fact that he represented all of America.
During Wendell’s time in the Senate, he helped bring greater transparency to government, greater safety to the airlines, and greater access to the polls.
It was thanks to his leadership as Whip that the Violence Against Women Act passed in 1994 as part of the Biden Crime Bill, changing the lives of so many women and men in this country and around the world.
On a personal note, Senator Ford has been an important part of our family for a long time. He gave Sara Jones Biden, from Owensboro, Kentucky, her first job on the Hill when she graduated from Duke Law School, and that’s how she met my brother Jimmy.
Last May, Jill had the honor of speaking at Owensboro Community College in Wendell’s hometown, and it was clear that his legacy will long outlive him in Owensboro, in Kentucky, and across the United States.
Wendell was an extremely effective senator and a great personal friend whose advice I sought long after he had left the Senate. I will miss him.
Our thoughts are with Jean, Steve, and Shirley during this difficult time. He was a good man.