SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Vice President Joe Biden and former Speaker of the House John Boehner set aside their political differences Sunday to jointly accept a University of Notre Dame award given to prominent Catholics.
The school presented the Laetare Medal to Biden and Boehner at the school's commencement in Notre Dame Stadium, the South Bend Tribune (http://bit.ly/1V4faC0 ) reported.
Biden called it "the most meaningful award" he's ever received, and urged graduates to work together to find common ground.
Boehner, a Republican former congressman from Ohio who left office six months ago, echoed Biden's remarks about working across political and ideological divides, even as he drew laughter for mentioning his "many disagreements" with the vice president.
"Governing isn't about promising the impossible," he said. "You can find common ground with the other side without compromising your beliefs."
While some in the audience gave Biden a standing ovation, anti-abortion protesters picketed outside the stadium, calling the Democrat's support of abortion rights contrary to Catholic teachings.
Announcing the honor in March, Notre Dame's president, the Rev. John Jenkins, said Boehner and Biden have dedicated their lives "to genuine public service." He decried "a toxic political environment where poisonous invective and partisan gamesmanship pass for political leadership."