Saturday, August 23, 2008

The Message

The real reason Barack Obama picked Joe Biden to be his Vice President nominee is because he's from Scranton. Forget all that foreign policy expertise and gravitas -- it's the Scranton connection that counts.

As the Scranton Times put it, Biden's NEPA roots run deep:

With confirmation that he’s Illinois Sen. Barack Obama’s choice as Democratic vice presidential nominee, Delaware Sen. Joseph Biden is the first Northeast Pennsylvania native to become part of a major party presidential ticket.

He was born here, lived in the city’s Green Ridge section, hopped across garage roofs with his buddies, played Little League here, moved away with his family to Delaware when he was 10 years old, but has returned frequently since.

Though he has spent the bulk of his 65 years in Delaware, Scranton is close to his heart.
As the Caucus blog of NYTimes added, Reaction in Scranton to Biden News:

When Barack Obama introduces Joseph R. Biden Jr. in Springfield, Ill., at 3 p.m., there will be a TV-watch party at an Irish pub in Scranton, Pa.

Scranton is not only Mr. Biden’s hometown, but a place where Hillary Rodham Clinton has deep family roots — and a place not all that enthusiastic with Mr. Obama.

Mrs. Clinton defeated Mr. Obama in Scranton in the April primary, 74 percent to 26 percent — even though Mr. Obama had the backing of another Scranton favorite son, Senator Bob Casey.

Feelings about Mrs. Clinton’s failure to advance were still so raw there that just last week, her younger brother, Tony Rodham, and other Clinton allies met with Carly Fiorina, a top adviser to Senator John McCain, the presumptive Republican nominee.

Ms. Fiorina was on a bus tour of the state, reaching out to disillusioned Clinton supporters who might be willing to cross party lines and vote for Mr. McCain.

While the Democrats who attended the meeting downplayed its significance and called it purely social, it did raise questions about the degree of enthusiasm Mr. Obama might be able to muster there in November.

But short of picking Mrs. Clinton as his running mate, Mr. Obama probably could not have done better to salve the wounds than to pick Mr. Biden, who spent the early part of his life in Scranton and shares its Catholic, blue-collar values.

See also, Obama Introduces 'That Scrappy Kid from Scranton'.

(Do your own sign @ RedKid, via Blue Gal)

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