Biden: Taking Grandkids on Trips 'One of the Great Advantages of Being Vice President'

By Susan Jones | April 15, 2014 | 7:13am EDT

Vice President Joe Biden and Secretary of State John Kerry unveil the FIFA World Cup trophy, the actual trophy that will be awarded to the winner of this year’s World Cup soccer tournament in Brazil, during a ceremony at the State Department in Washington, Monday, April 14, 2014. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

( - The Obama daughters aren't the only ones with travel privileges. Vice President Joe Biden told a gathering on Monday that he likes to bring his grandchildren with him when he travels.

"I literally -- at Christmastime, Mr. Ambassador, I always sit with the kids the last five or -- and say, well, where do you want to go this year? Because one of the great advantages of being vice president, I'm able to take, if I'm not going into a war zone, one of my grandchildren with me. And I do take them all. They're good kids. They don't get in the way. And it's a great experience."

Biden said his granddaughters all told him they wanted to go to the World Cup: "It was an honor to be at the last World Cup and watching Spain win," Biden said.

Biden led the U.S. delegation to Johannesburg in 2010 when Spain won the World Cup, defeating the Netherlands 1-0.

The 2014 World Cup begins on June 12 in Brazil, and the actual trophy is now on an 88-nation tour, making its first stop in the United States at the State Department on Monday. That's where Biden was speaking.

Biden told the gathering he'd like to be in Brazil for the next World Cup: "And although my plans are not yet final, I want you to know I intend to go to the games. I'm looking at my niece, Missy Owens, who works for Coca-Cola, to get me a good seat if I go. (Laughter.) I'm not so sure we can handle it, but Missy, maybe you'll be able to help me out." (Coca-Cola is sponsoring the trophy tour.)

Biden called it a "thrill" to "actually stand here with the cup, the real deal."

The vice president said of all the thousands of sporting events he's attended in his life, the World Cup was the "most unusual" and the "most consequential."

"You know, we have our Super Bowl, we have our World Series, we have the NBA Finals, we have March Madness, but My Lord, it is nothing quite like the World Cup. And it not only brings countries together, it generates a sense of enthusiasm that's hard to believe, except, maybe the Olympics. But even there, there seems to be a greater intensity among countries about the World Cup. It's like it's a measure of -- it's how they measure themselves."

Biden said the 2014 World Cup will be "heard in every single corner of the world -- people cheering, hollering..."

Biden noted that although soccer historically has not been a U.S. game, 25 million people in the U.S. play soccer -- and 80 percent of them are young people who will be players and fans for years go come.

"And our major league soccer teams are selling out stadiums and our national teams are looking strong. And the world should know, we're coming ready to play."

Biden said he expects the World Cup to return to the United States soon  -- "in the hands of our players rather than being delivered by someone else."

MRC Store