Biden Time

From The New York Times:

WASHINGTON — Senator Barack Obama introduced Senator Joseph R. Biden Jr. as his running mate on Saturday, a choice that strengthens the Democratic ticket’s credentials on foreign policy heading into the general election against Senator John McCain.

In Mr. Biden, Mr. Obama selected a six-term senator best known for his expertise on foreign affairs — Mr. Biden spent last weekend in Georgia as that nation engaged in a tense confrontation with Russia — and his skills at political combat.


Original DVD cover.

[…] at the rally, Mr. Biden quickly demonstrated that he could fight hard, too. He offered a lusty attack on Mr. McCain, after noting that he had been a friend for 35 years.

“Over the past 18 months, I’ve watched Barack meet those challenges with judgment, intelligence and steel in his spine,” Mr. Biden said. “I’ve watched as he’s inspired millions of Americans to this new cause. And during those 18 months, I must tell you, frankly, I have been disappointed in my friend John McCain, who gave in to the right wing of his party and gave in to the Swift Boat politics he once so deplored.”

Mr. Biden is the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and is familiar with foreign leaders and diplomats around the world. Although he initially voted to authorize the war in Iraq — Mr. Obama opposed it from the start — Mr. Biden became a persistent critic of President Bush’s policies in Iraq. Mr. Obama’s acquaintance with Mr. Biden is in no small part a result of the fact that the two serve together on that committee, aides said.

…snip…

Mr. Biden seems likely to fill in other gaps in Mr. Obama’s political appeal that became increasingly clear during the primary season and going into the fall. He is a Roman Catholic, a group with which Mr. Obama had trouble during the Democratic primaries; he has a blue-collar background, potentially giving him appeal among working-class voters, another bloc in which Mr. Obama ran poorly in the primaries; and he was born in Pennsylvania, a battleground state that could be vital to both parties.

…snip…

Although Mr. Biden is not exactly a household name, he is probably the best known of all the Democrats who were in contention for the spot, given his political and personal history, not to mention his regular appearances on the Sunday morning television news shows.

According to the latest New York Times/CBS News Poll, 53 percent of Democratic voters said they had not yet heard enough about Mr. Biden to offer an opinion, and another 19 percent were undecided. Twenty-one percent viewed Mr. Biden favorably, and just 5 percent had an unfavorable opinion of him. The poll was conducted Aug. 15-20 with 370 Democratic voters.

He first ran for the Senate from Delaware when he was 29. Mr. Biden has run twice for the presidency, in 1988 and in 2008, dropping out early in both cases.

…snip…

He was also the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee during two contentious Supreme Court nomination battles: the confirmation proceedings for Robert H. Bork, who was defeated, and Clarence Thomas, who was confirmed after an explosive hearing in which Anita Hill had accused Mr. Thomas of sexual harassment. Mr. Biden led the opposition to both nominations, although he came under criticism from some feminists for not immediately disclosing what were, at first, Ms. Hill’s closed-door accusations against Mr. Thomas.

…snip…

He is also something of a fixture in Washington, and he would bring to the campaign — and the White House — a familiarity with the way the city and Congress work that Mr. Obama cannot match after his relatively short stint in Washington. Sensitive to portrayals of Mr. Biden as a creature of Washington who undercuts Mr. Obama’s claims to represent change, aides to Mr. Obama emphasized that Mr. Biden commutes home by train each evening to Wilmington, where he has continued to live throughout his Senate career.

From CBS News:

(The Politico) In a bit of a bipartisan twist, several Republican senators joined the flood of Democrats congratulating Sen. Joe Biden today after Sen. Barack Obama tapped him as his vice presidential running mate.

As Politico colleague Jonathan Martin notes, Republican Sen. Chuck Hagel of Nebraska went way off message, calling the Delaware senator’s “good news for Obama and America.”

Sen. Dick Lugar of Indiana, the top Republican on Biden’s Senate Foreign Relations Committee, also issued a statement congratulating the chairman, as did Republican Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania.

“No one on the Democratic side knows more about foreign policy than Sen. Biden,” Specter crowed. “He’s been an articulate spokesman on the subject. He also knows about domestic policy. He’s been a leader on crime control.”

23 Comments

Filed under 2008 election, Anita Hill, Arlen Specter, Barack Obama, Catholicism, Chimpy, Chuck Hagel, Clarence Thomas, Democrats, George W. Bush, Georgia, humor, Iraq War, Joe Biden, John McCain, movies, parody, politics, Republicans, Richard Lugar, Sexual Harassment, snark, Supreme Court, Wordpress Political Blogs

23 responses to “Biden Time

  1. jeb

    The question is – to quote the current VP – “so?”

    Until Al Gore, VPs were funeral attenders, stand-ins for photo ops and potted plants who bided (nice pun eh) their time until they could run for the office. Now of course the current VP is the real string puller who has the levers of power without the responsibility and accountability.

    What will Obama do with his VP? Assuming he has a good Secretary of State and National Security Adviser, will Biden be in the mix? Will he be jetting off to all the hot spots to lend a hand? Lord knows after this crowd for the last years, there will be plenty of work for everyone.

    John Nance Garner once noted that the vice-presidency wasn’t worth a warm bucket of spit (or so that was how they reported it in the papers in the day). Is Biden just a prop to help Obama with voter perception and the media’s insistence that we all believe he has an experience problem or does it even matter?

    Inquiring minds want to know.

  2. jeb,
    first things first, i think that joe biden is going to get obama a lot of votes. i know that he is very popular down here in south floriduhhhh. i have a biden story that i will tell later.
    now, what will he do once he is in office? well, i was thinking about that. if nothing else, he has the tie-breaking vote in the senate. that could come in very handy, especially with joe mcliebercain still having to be dealt with. he also has a lot of friends in congress, and he will be invaluable in twisting some friendly arms when there is legislation to be introduced or passed.
    p.s. why didn’t you say that my title was a nice pun when you used the same one and called it nice then? huh? i’m a little insulted, jeb. 😐

  3. jlms qkw - jenn

    what a fantastic pun in your movie title, nonnie! 😉

    it’s a beautiful site, your poster tonight! the stuff made of dreams that we hope will be true soon!

  4. jeb

    Hopefully McLieberfluffer won’t be relevant in ’09. As important as the presidency is, it is really essential that Dems take the Senate in a big way so that the Rethugs can’t block things. Looking at the numbers, I hope that the that possibility becomes a reality and the Indy Joe can go caucus with his real buddies until the good people of Connecticut can finally dump him. Actually, the smart thing to do would be for President Obama to ask him to take an Ambassadorial appointment – or even a minor cabinet post – and get him out of the Senate.

    I’m taking a page from Biden’s book, no sourcing of my thoughts. Just kiddin’. No, I meant that we can have fun with this all day but I probably should have said that. Am I banned now?

  5. why thank you, jenn! it’s nice to get a little recognition around here. 😥

  6. jeb,
    i don’t want to jinx anything, so i will keep my predictions about the senate to myself.
    and, yes, you are banned. just as soon as i figure out how to ban someone. that will probably take some time, so just carry on as usual until then.

  7. geez, what a maroon! i forgot to add the button!

  8. Friend of the court

    No ban button? Oh, dear.

  9. i meant the button in the diary, but i like the way you think, fotc! a ban button–ooooh

  10. jeb

    Hmmm, I wonder if there any nice prizes that go with the honor of being the first one banned from the Raisin?

  11. Friend of the court

    Last.

  12. you get a box of dried fruit, jeb. 😳 look what you made me do! i ruined fotc’s last! 😡

  13. jeb

    Now let’s not start that again!

    Oh, and last.

  14. hey, you kids! don’t make me get up!!

    last.

  15. jeb

    You’ve got mail.

    last

  16. nightowl724

    Last? Not so fast!

    How could anyone here expect to be last when I haven’t commented yet?

    nonnie, nice one! No snark, but it made me laugh anyways… and it tickled my “hope button.”

    Did everyone see Dems in Black by Dood Abides?
    http://tinyurl.com/6ycn6u

    Now, you can all play your silly little “Last Game” again!

  17. i like biden, but in the end (as i keep saying) it comes down to – can most of america vote for the black guy.

    period.

  18. nightowl724

    distributor cap –

    Indeed.

  19. jlms qkw - jenn

    i am thinking that the folks on the obama campaign are at least as smart as us, and are weighing the balance of the senate and house like we are.

    i believe biden is eligible to run for both his senate seat (he’s up this year) and VP. and delaware has a dem gov to appt. a dem replacement . . . and biden as the vp would have the tiebreaker vote.

    last 😉

    nonnie, you rock! every single day!

  20. nightowl,
    i loved, loved, loved dood’s men in black poster! he’s on my hotlist over at the big orange, so i never miss his stuff.

  21. dcAp,
    there will be some who just won’t vote for the black guy, but there are a lot of others who will feel a lot more comfortable now that biden is on the ticket. at least, that’s how it is in south floriduhhhh. it isn’t just a matter of obama being black. there are a lot of people–especially seniors–who don’t feel like he earned the right to run for president. however, a lot of them also think that captain underpants is too old, taking into consideration their own age-imposed limitations. biden is not too old and not too young. he’s been in the senate for a long time, and his personal story is compelling. the choice of biden also allows dems to bring up capt u’s extraordinary wealth, his marriages, and his cheating. it also means there is a smart pretty blond to compare to cindy lou. we have a thieving, drug-addled, botox-drenched beer heiress vs an intelligent beautiful woman who achieved things on her own, raised her husband’s motherless children as well as her own daughter, teaches at a community college, and has a foundation for breast cancer and raises money for military families (this is all in tonight’s post).
    the irony here is that, because of chimpy and deadeye dick, the vice presidency is looked upon as much more important than it used to be. i really think biden is going to make a big difference.

  22. jenn,
    i wonder who the governor will pick to replace biden. it will be interesting. the only rep from delaware, mike castle, is a rethug and won’t be picked (and i hope he loses his house seat–maybe to jerry northington!!). i’m not up on delaware politics, but i am sure there is a good dem waiting in the wings.

  23. jlms qkw - jenn

    one of the biden sons was mentioned in some diary or another.

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