According to the son of President Ronald Reagan, Michael, Joe Biden warned Reagan that he would expose any covert operation the president had planned while Biden was a senator.
Biden opposed Reagan on a variety of issues, ranging from foreign policy to the judiciary.
Michael Reagan stated, “After my father left office, he disclosed to me that Senator Joe Biden contacted him and threatened to release the details of any covert operation my father had planned to the public in order to halt it.”
In his most well-known address of his administration, delivered on June 12, 1987, President Reagan spoke about the Berlin Wall and asked Mikhail Gorbachev to demolish it. Three days after, Reagan claimed in his journal that Sen. Biden was a liar and a demagogue, writing, “There was some conversation about Sen. Biden. He gave a speech at the Harvard University JFK School last night, and I saw it on CNN. He is a smooth-talking pure demagogue who is trying to protect America from the Reagan philosophy.”
Reagan’s Strategic Defense plan, sometimes known as “Star Wars,” was a plan to create a missile defense system that might defend the nation from a significant nuclear strike. Biden vehemently opposed this concept. The State Department has observed that “Reagan was unequivocal in private that the purpose of American defense research ought to be to abolish the necessity for nukes, which he believed to be inherently immoral.”
“Not only could we not defeat SDI, SDI destroyed all our prospective responses,” the general in charge of the Soviet Ministry of Defense’s strategic analysis section recalled to the Soviet Politburo in 1983.
“The president’s ongoing support for SDI,” according to Biden, “constitutes among the most hazardous and irresponsible actions in the history of contemporary statecraft,” he said.
Biden served as the ranking senator on the Senate Judiciary Committee in 1986 when Ronald Reagan proposed William Rehnquist as the next Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court. “The first meeting was held last night—highlighted by vituperative comments on television by Sens. Kennedy, Metzenbaum, and Biden, according to what Reagan wrote in his journal about Biden and his fellow leftist senators on the panel, Howard Metzenbaum and Ted Kennedy. They truly resemble a lynch mob.”
Biden assumed the leadership of the Judiciary Committee in 1987. Robert Bork, a talented conservative jurist, was put forth by Reagan for the Supreme Court. The Washington Post said that Biden’s partisan treatment of Bork was so severe that it “does not do much to support the senator’s claim to be fit for higher office by shifting automatically to the other side of the subject at the first sign of pressure.” Biden had “already positioned himself in the job of the prosecutor rather than a juror,” the Post continued.