'That was such a surprise': Dr. Jill Biden reacts to Wall Street Journal op-ed where she was called 'kiddo'

By Azmi Haroun

On Thursday night, president-elect Joe Biden and future first lady Dr. Jill Biden sat down on "The Late Show With Stephen Colbert," and addressed an op-ed saying that Jill Biden should not use the "Dr." title. 

In the episode, the Bidens answered a range of questions about the incoming administration's priorities, personal attacks and attacks against Hunter Biden, and the controversial op-ed in The Wall Street Journal by Joseph Epstein.

The essay, which was torched by many who came to Dr. Jill Biden's support, was titled, "Is There a Doctor in the White House? Not if You Need an MD." 

In the essay, Epstein argues that although Dr. Jill Biden has a doctorate, because she is not a medical doctor, the educator's title "feels fraudulent, not to say a touch comic." Epstein addresses the future first lady as "Madame First Lady — Mrs. Biden — Jill — kiddo."

"That was such a surprise," Jill Biden told Colbert. "It was really the tone of it. He called me 'kiddo,' and one of the things I'm most proud of is my doctorate. I mean, I've worked so hard for it."

Joe Biden beamed with pride as he spoke of his wife's academic accomplishments to Colbert. "I got to hand her the doctorate on the stage at the University of Delaware," Joe Biden said. "You had two master's degrees. She kept going to school all the time while teaching at night. And then what happens is, I said, 'Jill, why don't you get a doctorate and make us some real money,'" Joe Biden said. 

The President-elect then joked, "She gets the doctorate, gets a $2,000 raise."

"Look at all the people who came out in support of me," Jill Biden told Colbert. "I am so grateful, and I was just overwhelmed by how gracious people were."

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Colbert asked Joe Biden if he would consider going "full corn pop" on Epstein and his supporters, in a reference to a story Joe Biden told during the presidential campaign about confronting a gang at a Delaware pool in his youth.

"The answer is, it's close," Biden joked. "I've been suppressing my Irishness for a long time."

Michelle Obama, among others, came to Dr. Jill Biden's defense this week noting the sexist tone and message of the essay, and the diminishing and determining of women's accomplishments based on a singular man's take. 

The Bidens insisted on Colbert that they preferred to take the high road rather than lob insults at Epstein.