WASHINGTON (RNS) — Both presidential candidates kicked off Election Day on Tuesday (Nov. 3) with visits to places where they’ve spent ample time.
For former Vice President Joe Biden, that place was church. For President Donald Trump, it was Fox News.
Biden — along with his wife, Jill, and two of their granddaughters — woke up early to attend the 7:10 a.m. Mass at his home church of St. Joseph on the Brandywine in Greenville, Delaware. They left the service early to venture over to the church’s cemetery, where Biden’s first wife, his son and daughter are all buried.
Biden visits the graves often, but there might have been a special significance Tuesday: It was his late son, Beau, who reportedly urged his father to run for president in 2015 before succumbing to brain cancer. The elder Biden ultimately didn’t run at the time, telling a group of Catholics who visited his home later that year that his son’s death had simply taken too hard of an emotional toll.
But he did throw his hat into the ring this go-round, and he has made faith — including his own — a fixture of the long campaign.
“Look, I have the great advantage (that) my faith, the Catholic social doctrine, and my political views coincide,” Biden said in one of his final digital ads. “It’s about: You are your brother’s keeper.”
Trump has also often appealed to faith during the hotly contested election, stressing his opposition to abortion when speaking to conservative Christian audiences, attending services at evangelical churches and once declaring that Biden is “against God.”
But the president began his day on Tuesday paying a telephonic visit to a different locale he frequents often: Fox News.
Trump was 45 minutes late to his interview with “Fox & Friends,” and though he did not explain his tardiness, he sounded notably tired after a late night of campaigning amid an already vigorous campaign schedule.
Nevertheless, he insisted he would win, dismissed polling that pegs him as an underdog in many states and rejected assertions he would prematurely declare victory before votes are adequately tabulated.
“If there’s victory — I think we’ll have victory,” he said. “I think the polls are suppression polls. I think we’ll have victory, but only when there’s victory — there’s no reason to play games.”