Opinion: Breaking: Obama selects Joe Biden as his VP running mate
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So the recent events in Georgia involving Russian troops sent shock waves all the way down Chicago’s Michigan Avenue to Obama headquarters. He decided to call in one of the Senate’s top foreign policy experts to counter another of the Senate’s top foreign policy experts.
Two high-ranking Democratic Party officials have confirmed the choice of the veteran to The Times. Republican reaction is included at the end of this item.
The official announcement should come shortly, as promised, in an e-mail and text message dispatched to hundreds of thousands of Obama supporters around the world.John McCain, a longtime national security expert and personal friend of the embattled Georgian president.
Obama, who has said geography would not be the major factor in his running mate choice, was true to his word.
He obviously decided that the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee from a tiny state famous for seafood and lax business incorporation laws, brought much more to the campaign table in terms of foreign policy expertise than he costs in terms of being a lifelong D.C. insider.
Last weekend after consulting with Obama, Biden made a hasty two-day trip to Georgia himself to assess the situation and voice support for the democratically elected government there.
Biden, who is a Roman Catholic, has been a well-spoken if underfunded campaigner during his own two attempts to win the Democratic nomination. In fact, the Pennsylvania-born son of a car salesman is known for being quite a long-winded talker, sometimes close to a loose cannon with his verbal barbs.
Back in his first White House run in 1987, Biden ran into trouble for plagiarizing a speech by a British labor leader and withdrew, blaming the ‘exaggerated shadow’ of his offense.
Ironically, as the unpredictable twists of American politics would have it, last winter it was Biden during his latest unsuccessful bid for his party’s nomination who provided a stinging sound bite to Republicans about his new political marriage partner.
He was asked by moderator George Stephanopoulos during one Democratic primary debate about his criticism of Obama as being unprepared to become the chief executive, adding that the Oval Office is not a place for on-the-job training.
‘I think I stand by that statement,’ said Biden, who was standing right next to Obama at that moment. (See video below.)
Presumably, the veteran senator has changed his mind now.
BE SURE, and let us know what you think of Obama’s pick in the Comments section below. We might want to write about your reactions.
(UPDATE: The McCain campaign quickly released a statement: ‘There has been no harsher critic of Barack Obama’s lack of experience than Joe Biden. Biden has denounced Barack Obama’s poor foreign policy judgment and has strongly argued in his own words what Americans are quickly realizing -- that Barack Obama is not ready to be President.”)
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-- Andrew Malcolm