Is anyone actually surprised by this?
President Obama has no intention of getting rid of Vice President Biden as his running mate, the White House said Thursday.
Republicans are being “ridiculous” and are trying to “distract attention” with their focus on Vice President Biden and his controversial comments earlier this week, White House press secretary Jay Carney said.
“They know that what they’re saying about this is ridiculous,” Carney said at a briefing with reporters, adding that it’s an “obvious” attempt to take attention away from policy issues.
Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign lashed out at Biden and President Obama this week after the vice president in an address in Virginia said the Republican’s approach to the financial industry would “put y’all back in chains.” Biden made the remarks in front of a racially mixed audience.
For Republicans, Vice President Biden is almost a gift sent down from heaven. His consistent gaffes are so comedic, sometimes it’s hard to separate the real Joe Biden from the one often fictionalized in the pages of The Onion. (The Onion‘s content isn’t always in the best taste, so I’ll leave it up to those of you who’d be interested in reading more to find those Biden gems yourself rather than linking to it here.) And I don’t think there’s any real doubt who is going to be coming out ahead in the Vice Presidential debates. Congressman Ryan is a gifted speaker and rhetorician. Even those on the other end of the political spectrum respect his integrity and competency.
So why keep Biden on amid so much speculation that he might be passed over for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton?
The answer is simple: it would be terrible PR. It would show that the Obama campaign not only made a mistake with their choice to pick Biden in 2008, but that they have now been pushed back on their heels as they fight to retain the White House. They’d be entering the most intense portion of their campaign season on the defensive. They can’t let that happen. The theme coming out of this White House, as the country continues into high unemployment and economic uncertainty, is “Move along, folks. Nothing to see here. Business as usual.”
This is not an administration known for its humility. And at this stage of the game, switching VPs would only make them look incredibly desperate.
There is, of course, another possibility, for those who are sure a back-room deal was in the works. Hillary Clinton, who went from presumed nominee to being shoved aside in 2008, may have turned the campaign down. That’s just speculation, of course, but one thing is hard to argue: payback is, as they say…not a very pleasant thing.