Vice President Joe Biden has canceled a speech at the Human Rights Campaign's (HRC) 17th annual National Dinner.

Biden was scheduled to give the keynote address at Saturday's event which is expected to draw more than 3,400 people to the District of Columbia's Washington Convention Center. HRC is the nation's largest LGBT rights advocate.

The AP cited the partial shutdown of the federal government, which has forced hundreds of thousands of federal workers on furlough, as the reason behind the cancellation.

HRC President Chad Griffin called Biden “a champion of civil rights for his entire career” in announcing the vice president's participation.

Biden, considered a possible 2016 presidential candidate, is credited with pushing President Barack Obama to support marriage equality during the 2012 presidential campaign.

(Related: Joe Biden calls gay marriage the “issue of our day.”)