Sunday, August 24, 2008

The Biden Factor

The wondering has ceased and the political world cannot stop talking about Barack Obama’s choice to be his vice presidential running mate, Delaware Sen. Joe Biden.

Many Hillary Clinton supporters are no doubt furious that the presumed Democratic nominee did not choose the New York senator, but it was a calculated maneuver that he had to take. As it has been mentioned before, having a double-minority ticket would be too much for some closed-minded Americans to accept.

In addition, many are already having a hard time swallowing the hypocrisy of having Clinton throwing support to the Illinois senator after hearing from her about how unqualified he is to be president during the long campaign trail.

But sadly, many of us have to deal with a double dose of that hypocrisy, because Biden too has said that Obama does not have what it takes to be president. And that’s not all he said.

“I am not running for vice president,” Biden said at the time, as a Democratic presidential candidate himself, in an August 2007 interview with FOX News. “I would not accept it if anyone offered it to me. The fact of the matter is I’d rather stay as chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee than be vice president.”

Of course Biden would take it. Not too many politicians would refuse to have that job title. But that is something that Obama has to be concerned about: Biden’s infamous “running of the mouth.” Who can forget in a February 2007 interview that the Delaware senator said this to his possible future boss?

“I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy. I mean, that’s a storybook, man,” Biden said in a New York Observer article. That “openness” created a backlash and it just might cost Obama his chance at the White House.

However, Biden does have a lot to offer as vice president because of his long history of being in the Senate. And his liberal voting record may help Hillary supporters swallow the bitter pill that Obama picked someone else, but who does mirror Clinton’s views.

Biden’s experience will clearly help Obama’s inexperience and he can certainly guide him on important issues. But this grandfatherly portrayal just might magnify Obama’s inability to lead this nation.

Only time will tell if Obama made a wise choice in Biden.

Yet, Obama seems to be one step ahead of his Republican counterpart, John McCain. The Arizona senator is expected to announce his own vice presidential running mate soon, but Obama made sure he beat him to the punch by doing it first. It shows that Obama is more organized than McCain and the Democratic Duo has already politically attacked him.

McCain will have to make a quick recovery and wisely choose his partner if he hopes to overcome an Obama-Biden ticket in November.