“Here and now I give you my word: If you entrust me with the presidency, I will draw on the best of us, not the worst,” the former vice president said from a crowd-free convention center in Delaware. “I will be an ally of the light, not the darkness.”

Biden turned repeatedly to that theme, casting himself as uniquely positioned to heal the country at a time of historic division.

“The choice could not be more clear,” he said. “No rhetoric is needed — just judge this president on the facts.”

Still, he frequently underscored a message of hope that political gaps could be filled. “We are so much better than that,” he said, adding later that the crossroads at which the nation finds itself “is not a partisan moment — this is an American moment.”