WASHINGTON — On Tuesday evening, President Biden voted. The process involved a hasty announcement to the press, multiple motorcades and two jet flights.
In a last-minute move that demonstrated how the presidency complicates even the most mundane of tasks, Mr. Biden and the first lady, Jill Biden, flew home from the White House to Wilmington, Del., arriving at the polls less than an hour before voting in the state’s primary contests ended at 8 p.m. About an hour after they landed, they climbed back aboard Air Force One and jetted back to Washington.
The trip had not been on the president’s publicly released schedule. But the pilgrimage back to his home state to cast a vote is a familiar one for sitting presidents, and typically affords an opportunity to connect with voters.
Former President Barack Obama traveled to Illinois to vote in the 2014 midterm races while helping campaign for Gov. Pat Quinn. Mr. Biden also voted early from Wilmington during the 2020 presidential election, while his rival, former President Donald J. Trump, cast an early vote from West Palm Beach, Fla.
Mr. Biden also returned to his birthplace, Scranton, Pa., on the day of the 2020 election. He addressed his supporters and signed “from this house to the White House with the grace of God” on the living room wall of his childhood home.
But Mr. Biden’s whirlwind trip on Tuesday left little chance to do anything but travel to and from the polling place, in a performing arts center at a school, answer a few questions from reporters and make a quick stop at his Wilmington residence.
The one contested primary for a statewide office in Delaware on Tuesday was for state auditor — a race in which Lydia York, a lawyer, defeated Kathleen K. McGuiness, the scandal-plagued incumbent.
In July, a jury found Ms. McGuiness guilty of misdemeanors stemming from her hiring her daughter and awarding a contract to a consulting firm that had also worked on one of her previous campaigns. But she was allowed to remain on the ballot after the Delaware Supreme Court ruled that misdemeanors do not disqualify candidates from holding office in the state.