Republican presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz is apologizing for cracking a joke at Vice President Joe Biden's expense, even as Biden mourns the death of his son.
During an appearance Wednesday in Howell, Michigan, Cruz rattled off a Biden line he's been using in speeches on the stump. In the joke, Cruz pokes fun at Biden's occasionally controversial remarks and tells his audience that one need only mention Biden's name to get people to laugh.
"Vice President Joe Biden. You know the nice thing? You don't need a punchline," Cruz said. "I promise you it works. The next party you're at, just walk up to someone and say, 'Vice President Joe Biden' and just close your mouth. They will crack up laughing."
After Cruz told the joke, he was asked by Detroit News reporter Chad Livengood why he would make a joke about the vice president, whose son Beau Biden — the attorney general of Delaware — died Saturday at the age of 46. The senator walked away without commenting.
"It was a mistake to use an old joke about Joe Biden during his time of grief, and I sincerely apologize," the Texas senator said in his post.
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The post added: "The loss of his son is heartbreaking and tragic, and our prayers are very much with the vice president and his family."
A funeral Mass will be held in Delaware Saturday for Beau Biden. President Barack Obama plans to deliver a eulogy.