Yesterday, millions of liberal cell phones were a flutter when they received text messages of the exciting news that the NY Times broke the night before. Wunderkind Barack "Barry" Obama had chosen one-time wunderkind, current curmudgeon, Joseph Biden as his running mate in the upcoming election.
Biden, the Michael Phelps of Delaware Senators, once described himself as Barack Obama before Barack Obama. Not so much in that he has a long lost brother living in a shack in Kenya, or because like Obama, he is also (at least) half-white. But more because Biden was once considered the young, brash upstart of the Senate; getting himself elected at the ripe old age of 29.
But that was 36 years ago. Today Biden is better known for his wealth of experience and expertise in foreign affairs. Some pundits posit that the recent clash between Georgian and Russian forces was the final impetus in Obama's choice for Biden as his Veep. However, reports of Biden sending Medvedev and Putin fruit baskets in appreciation have yet to be confirmed.
Biden is also known for his say-anything attitude. Of course we all remember his observations on the nascent candidacy of Obama way back in February of last year:
"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."
I'm sure that's all water under the bridge by now. As I'm sure we won't hear this soundbite hashed out again by the McCain camp.
But other than his occasional (and/or frequent) gaffes, Biden brings a certain gravitas to the Obama ticket. His experience compliments Obama's youth. Biden's regarded as existing outside the DC bubble, (despite his 36 years in the Senate), whereas Obama is a secret Muslim elitist. Biden regularly takes the train home to Wilmington after work, whereas Obama probably owns a segueway. Above all, though, Obama undoubtedly is looking to Biden to help him shore up support in the all too important rust belt states of Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania this November.
Presumptive Republican candidate John McCain has yet to announce his Vice President pick. Early reports are leaning towards one-time rival, and bizarre underwear-owning, Mitt Romney. But in the interest of balancing out the ticket, easing voter's concerns over his age, as well as tapping into the potentially bitter bloc of one-time Hillary supporters, McCain will most likely choose this 5 year old as his running mate.