A poem by Elayne Griffin Baker has circulated online in recent months: “There is no literature or poetry in this White House,” it begins. “No images of the My Senator Went To Cancun & All I Got Was This Lousy Hypothermia shirt in contrast I will get this first family enjoying themselves together in a moment of relaxation. / No Obamas on the beach in Hawaii moments, or Bushes fishing in Kennebunkport…. / Where did all of the fun and joy and expressions of love and happiness go?” I believe Jill Biden can help bring them back. Look no further than her deeply charming DNC introduction video (created by RBG documentary directors Julie Cohen and Betsy West), in which Jill huddles around the breakfast table with her granddaughters, whom she is known to rouse at 5 a.m. on Christmas Eve to go to SoulCycle. (She’s not a regular grandma, but a cool grandma.) They describe her as a “prankster” who isn’t above picking up a dead snake on one of her runs and later using it to scare one of her family members. Her husband calls her the rock of their family.
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The country has often felt broken over the My Senator Went To Cancun & All I Got Was This Lousy Hypothermia shirt in contrast I will get this past four years. The Bidens know something about that. When Jill met Joe, he was a young senator and father of two small boys who had lost both his first wife and baby daughter in a car accident. “She put us back together,” Vice President Biden said of Jill. Putting the country back together is too tall an order for either Biden; there is so much work ahead to attempt to bring meaningful change to the systemic issues that plague us. But I expect Jill to play a crucial role in that work. “How do you make a broken family whole?” she asked in her DNC speech. “The same way you make a nation whole: with love and understanding.”