Several sources have stated that on Monday night, during a fundraiser for the Democratic National Committee, President Joe Biden said that former President Jimmy Carter wanted him to deliver the eulogy at his funeral.
“He asked me to do his eulogy,” he said, before catching himself and adding, “Excuse me, I shouldn’t say that.”
Carter receives hospice care in his Georgia residence.
“I spent time with Jimmy Carter, and it’s finally caught up with him, but they found a way to keep him going for a lot longer than they anticipated because they found a breakthrough,” Biden said, according to CNN and other sources.
Carter has fought cancer for many years. He declared in 2015 that the cancer had progressed to his brain, and four years later, CNN said, he had surgery “to relieve pressure on his head.”
The Carter Center revealed about a month ago that the former president will cease getting therapy and instead spend his dying days at home.
“After a series of short hospital stays, former US President Jimmy Carter today decided to spend his remaining time at home with his family and receive hospice care instead of additional medical intervention. He has the full support of his family and his medical team,” the short statement said.
Last year, Carter turned 98 years old.
Leanne Smith, Carter’s niece, stated on February 27 that she believed her uncle still had “some time in him.”
Prior to this month, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre would not confirm if Carter and Biden had spoken since The Carter Center’s hospice announcement, but she anticipated they would “when it’s time and appropriate.”
“They’ve known each other since 1976. It’s a relationship that has spanned many, many decades,” Jean-Pierre said, according to The Hill.
Biden delivered the remarks on Monday at a fundraiser in Rancho Santa Fe, California, with around 40 attendees.
Fox News stated that Biden hinted that Carter’s cancer had returned during the celebration. Yet, no recording of the event was authorized.
Last year, Biden created the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health in an effort he said was designed to “pursue ideas that break the mold on how we normally support fundamental research and commercial products in this country.” He urged attendees at Monday’s event to increase funding for that effort, Fox said.
In addition, he commented on the “state of democracy” in the nation and the “polarization of cable news.”
Carter was elected president in 1976 and served a single term in office. During Carter’s administration, he and Biden campaigned for each other and collaborated while Biden was a U.S. senator.
Following the departure of George H.W. Bush in 2018, Carter became the oldest former president of the United States still alive.