Vice President Joe Biden has become the poster child for flubs and gaffes. Quite often, the President has had to take action for something his VP has said and spin it to make it more palatable to the public. In a way, Mr. Biden reminds me of the Michael Scott character on NBC’s “The Office” whereby he speaks to the camera to make some sort of witticism that is either baffling or just plain embarrassing. The Vice-President’s blunders are well documented in both print and video. On “YouTube” for example, there is quite a library of his most embarrassing remarks.
When interviewed on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” Biden delighted Republicans by referring to Governor Mitt Romney as “President Romney.” He also seemed to have trouble understanding who exactly he worked for as he referred to the president as “President Clinton.”
His most recent faux pas was in Virginia when he said, “Look at what they (Republicans) value, and look at their budget. And look what they’re proposing. (Romney) said in the first 100 days, he’s going to let the big banks write their own rules — unchain Wall Street. They’re going to put y’all back in chains.”
This little remark angered the black community on both sides of the aisle and caused the administration to go into damage control.
In Athens, Ohio ( home of my Alma Mater), the Veep experienced a problem in counting: “Look, John’s last-minute economic plan does nothing to tackle the number-one job facing the middle class, and it happens to be, as Barack says, a three-letter word: jobs. J-O-B-S, jobs.”
Somehow, this incident reminded me of the Dan Quayle 1994 “potato” spelling error, except without the fanfare from the press.
For an administration extremely sensitive to racial remarks, they cringed when they heard Biden say on C-SPAN, “You cannot go to a 7-11 or a Dunkin’ Donuts unless you have a slight Indian accent…. I’m not joking.”
In April 2012, Biden tried to defend the president’s foreign policy by making a comparison to Teddy Roosevelt’s “Big Stick” policy: “Speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far. I promise you, the President has a big stick. I promise you.”
Like Michael Scott, he was puzzled why his remarks resulted in gales of laughter from the audience.
In welcoming the Irish Prime Minister to the White House in March 2012, he shared “An old Irish saying; May the hinges of our friendship never go rusty”; and when describing the relationship between the two countries, he insisted, “there’s no doubt about them staying oiled and lubricated here.”
I’m sure the Irish PM is still shaking his head over this stereotype.
This has been but a small sampling of the Vice President’s gaffes. There are, of course, many more. He has consistently made statements that have embarrassed not only the administration but Americans everywhere; yet the press treats him with kid gloves and merely says, “Oh, that Joe, there he goes again.” Had a Republican made any one of these comments, he would have been unmercifully attacked by the press. Dan Quayle is an excellent example; any slip of the tongue by the VP during his term, and the media chastized and berated him. The same was true with Sarah Palin when she ran as John McCain’s vice presidential nominee. So much for “fair and balanced.”
The one remark of Biden’s which I consider somewhat prophetic was in 2008 when he said, “Make no mistake about this. Hillary Clinton is as qualified or more qualified than I am to be vice president of the United States of America.”
Wow, he got that one right. We certainly do not need a Michael Scott as Vice President.
Keep the Faith!
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Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 30 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at email@example.com
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Copyright © 2012 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.
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