Friday, September 12, 2008

What About Biden?

In all the hoopla surrounding the newly minted Republican VP candidate Gov. Sarah Palin, Democratic VP candidate Joe Biden seems to have been lost in the crowd. So what has he been doing the past couple of weeks?

It seems to be business as usual for the nominee, aside from the fact that at every event he attends, he must politely answer questions about the Palin phenomena. The senator does not appear to be phased by his opponent's sudden popularity. Though he may have been eclipsed by the media frenzy over Palin, Biden doesn't seem to be worried. And frankly judging by the way Palin not-so-successfully attempted to dodge some of Charles Gibson's more probing questions, I'm not so sure he needs to be.

To many, the Democrats may have underestimated the strength of the Palin choice in the very beginning. This may be true but it appears that Biden is not trying to appear intimidated by her star-status and vigor, though many others are. He seems to be taking on an approach which says that sure, she became a celebrity overnight and people are loving her but that initial wave will die as quickly as it came and then we'll have to examine the substance of what she has to offer. It seems like we may be hitting this new lull in her stardom, considering the hits and misses of last night's ABC interview. While he has no solid personal judgment on his opponent as of right now, he maintains that once she really starts to open up about key policy issues, like she did last night, the fascination exhibited by the American people will turn into critical assessment. When this happens I think Palin will need to be on her guard, prepared to answer questions she hasn't had to really talk about since she was chosen to be McCain's No 2.

Basically, Palin and the McCain campaign have been riding an intense wave of refreshed excitement, coasting along in the Gallup polls, not having to respond to the other side for a change. However, I think this ride will be ending very soon. Excitement and new faces are great but when the novelty wears off, people want to know exactly what they are left with. Wait for October 2, the day of the vice presidential debates. I think that is when we will really see if Biden was right in just sitting out the Palin storm.

Check out Politico for more.


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