Biden's recent meetings with Democrats stoking chatter about possible 2016 White House bid

Ken Thomas, The Associated Press
January 23, 2013

WASHINGTON - Joe Biden appears to be keeping his options open for 2016.

The vice-president is dropping hints that he may be laying groundwork for a presidential campaign.

He packed his schedule with events and receptions attended by party insiders surrounding President Barack Obama's inauguration.

Biden met with Democratic National Committee members during a private reception Tuesday. New Hampshire Gov. Maggie Hassan was among the guests at Biden's swearing-in ceremony, and the vice-president dropped by an Iowa inaugural ball. Both states are important in early presidential voting.

Biden told CNN there were a lot of reasons he wouldn't run and said he was focused on helping Obama.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton remains a heavy favourite for the Democratic presidential nomination if she decides to run.