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Biden's projected victory comes 48 years to the day after his first Senate win

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CBS News' projection that Joe Biden has won the presidency comes 48 years — to the day — after he first won election to the Senate on November 7, 1972. Biden was just 29 years old when he won his seat in Delaware, and would serve for 36 years.

Just over a month after his 1972 victory, Biden's wife and infant daughter were tragically killed in a car crash that also hospitalized his two sons, Beau and Hunter. 

Biden considered resigning after the accident, but the Senate's Democratic leader convinced him to take his seat. He was sworn in next to his son's hospital bed in Wilmington, Delaware.

Obit Beau Biden
In this January 5, 1973 file photo, 4-year-old Beau Biden, foreground, plays near his father, Joe Biden, as he's sworn in as U.S. senator from Delaware in a Wilmington hospital. AP

Nearly five decades later, he is in line to lead the nation as the 46th president of the United States. 

CBS News projected Saturday that Biden will win Pennsylvania, giving him the Electoral College votes he needs to win the White House.

When he is inaugurated on January 20, Biden will be the first president from Delaware, the 11th man to defeat an incumbent president, only the fourth vice president to be elected as commander-in-chief since the ratification of the 12th Amendment in 1804, and the first vice president to be elected president in nonconsecutive terms since Richard Nixon.

At 78, Biden will also be the oldest man to ever occupy the Oval Office. On November 3, Biden was the same age — 77 years, 11 months, 14 days — as Ronald Reagan was the day he left office.   

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