In reality, Biden, 72, had not arrived in Washington with his mind made up. And as he and his advisers weighed options, things did not look favorable.
His advisers were confident that he could raise the money and recruit the talent for a successful campaign, and they told Biden so. But they all agreed that there were not enough days left to execute those tasks, while also participating in debates and campaigning actively in the early states, before the voting began in February.
As he and his family were going through the emotionally wrought grieving process after the death of his son Beau Biden, who died of brain cancer on May 30, the vice president had finally run out of time to mount and run a serious campaign.
The final decision did not come until Tuesday night, after late meetings with his family and senior advisers following a dinner for former president Jimmy Carter and former vice president Walter F. Mondale.