With just six weeks until the presidential nominating contests begin, Joe Biden is fine-tuning what will soon be his final pitch to voters: that he is uniquely qualified to unite.
"I refuse to accept the proposition that we will be in a state of perpetual war with Republicans, because you can't govern the country if that's the case," the former vice president said. "We are a democracy. And a democracy depends upon consensus. We have to be able, we have to be able to pull the county together."
Biden says most of his opponents don't believe consensus is realistic.
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It is a key theme of his remarks to an audience in Exeter, New Hampshire, as is his experience.
"With experience, hopefully, comes some judgment, and hopefully comes some wisdom," he said.
On matters ranging from foreign policy to health care to climate change, Biden says no other candidate has his depth of knowledge.
"I've passed more major legislation than everybody, combined, that's running," he said.
And there was a swipe at the most progressive candidates, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, who promote free college and Medicare for all.
"Who among us do you think can implement what we say we want done?" he asked.
Biden has maintained his national lead among Democrats despite the Ukraine controversy and his share of mishaps — most recently his shift over the weekend from saying he would not comply with a subpoena in the president's impeachment trial to saying he would comply.
He did not address that topic Monday.
With all this talk of unity, Biden was asked if he would consider a Republican for a running mate. He said he would, he just couldn't think of one.