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Does Biden help Obama? Lefts Says Yes; Right Says No:

This week's National Journal poll of political bloggers asked: "What is Vice President Biden's impact on the Obama administration?" Of Left-leaning bloggers, 81% said that he is helping "a lot" or "a little." On the Right, nobody thought he was helping a lot, and 23% thought he was helping a little. Fifty-four percent said "Hurts a little."

I voted with the Right majority, and wrote: "Was supposed to be a wise expert in foreign policy. Now rather comical. In the last six months, has greatly underperformed Sarah Palin."

The results page also include the blogger poll on Sonia Sotomayor, which was published earlier this week, and discussed previously on the VC.

OrinKerr:
I think I notice a trend with this National Journal poll of political bloggers.
5.29.2009 12:00pm
Rich B. (mail):
I had always assumed that Biden was picked to help on the "which administration would you want to go have a beer with" standard. To the extent Obama/Biden made Obama look less "other" and more "one of the guys in a idealized Dockers commercial," he has been (and continues to be) helpful.
5.29.2009 12:07pm
PLR:
In the last six months, has greatly underperformed Sarah Palin.

David David David. I'm almost afraid to ask what performance criteria were used, not just to compare the two, but to confirm that the Governor of Alaska greatly outperformed the presiding officer of the Senate over the last four months.

Column inches in wingnut publications? Total elapsed time of YouTube videos?

Can't be wardrobe, Biden's pretty fussy abiout that.
5.29.2009 12:07pm
Dave N (mail):
Yes, that left-leaning bloggers and right-leaning bloggers often disagree. Who would have guessed?
5.29.2009 12:07pm
Thackery:
"Does Biden help Obama?"

Of course he does, and for the same reason that hanging around with the ugly girls makes the cheerleader all that more impressive.
5.29.2009 12:13pm
Cityduck (mail):
This is a waste of space.
5.29.2009 12:16pm
Pyrrho:
I have to wonder if Mr. Kopel has actually been keeping up with the news on Sarah Palin.
5.29.2009 12:17pm
William D. Tanksley, Jr:
"I'm almost afraid to ask what performance criteria were used"

Given the context, I would assume "wise expert in foreign policy." And I'm pretty sure it was meant as a simple insult against Biden rather than a carefully assessed calibration between two public figures. (In case you're wondering.)
5.29.2009 12:21pm
Dave N (mail):
Cityduck,

No one forced you to either a) read the post; or b) respond. If you a particular post doesn't appeal to you, my suggestion is, SKIP IT.
5.29.2009 12:23pm
David Welker (www):
Query:

What great things has Sarah Palin done lately?
5.29.2009 12:31pm
Fugle:
Good question David, since Biden has had a stellar performance thus far as VP -- what with the wise, thoughtful, measured comments and his significant contributions to political thought in general.
5.29.2009 12:35pm
M. Gross (mail):
I'm glad the Democratic party has finally come up with an answer to Dan Quayle.
5.29.2009 12:36pm
ruuffles (mail) (www):

What great things has Sarah Palin done lately?

I don't know, but her former-future-son-in-law has been posing for some child porn.

http://images.politico.com/global/blogs/levi.jpg
5.29.2009 12:37pm
Tugh (mail):
David,

Honest question: what is the value of this post in your eyes?
5.29.2009 12:39pm
Constantin:
I don't know, but her former-future-son-in-law has been posing for some child porn.

You sure, in a post about Biden, you want to get into whose kids (or former future kids-in-law) have been spotted doing what?

I figure both stories are irrelevant and pathetic and tacky. But if you don't, go ahead and tell the other side. Especially since one guy's the Vice President of the United States.
5.29.2009 12:40pm
ruuffles (mail) (www):

You sure, in a post about Biden, you want to get into whose kids (or former future kids-in-law) have been spotted doing what?

Sorry, my post wasn't a remark about Palin or Johnston. Just found it amusing that such a photo was published.
5.29.2009 12:42pm
Constantin:
Sorry, my post wasn't a remark about Palin or Johnston. Just found it amusing that such a photo was published.

Fair enough. (I've not seen the picture, as photos with the heading of "child porn" tend to scare me away). This thing just reminded me of Democrats going after Limbaugh (Vicodin), when he attacks Obama (cocaine), for Limbaugh's drug history. The disconnect always stuns me.

Anyway...
5.29.2009 12:46pm
Anton Sirius (mail) (www):

I'm glad the Democratic party has finally come up with an answer to Dan Quayle.


Well, that was the point. Biden's role was never to be a 'wise expert in foreign policy'; he was supposed to be the comic relief sidekick. And he's done quite well in that role so far.
5.29.2009 12:54pm
ruuffles (mail) (www):

I've not seen the picture, as photos with the heading of "child porn" tend to scare me awa

The link is to Politico, who republished them from an article by GQ.

HEre is the link to the Politico blog post.
politico blog
5.29.2009 12:56pm
NaG (mail):
Kopel's posts on poll results for political bloggers always remind me of those studies that find that the sky is indeed blue or that the ocean is wet.

Tell you what: next time just post the question and let the commentators guess how the political bloggers shook out.
5.29.2009 1:07pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
constantin:

This thing just reminded me of Democrats going after Limbaugh (Vicodin), when he attacks Obama (cocaine), for Limbaugh's drug history.


One important difference is that Limbaugh has a history of vehemently mocking and condemning people who use drugs illegally. Obama does not. Another important difference is that Limbaugh has been arrested for using drugs illegally. Obama has not.

So only one of those two people has a documented record of being a hyprocrite, in this regard. And Limbaugh is not attacked for his "drug history." He's attacked for being a hypocrite.

By the way, let us know if you can demonstrate that Obama ever used more than a trivial amount of cocaine.
5.29.2009 1:10pm
one of many:
I'll see your Palin's future-son-in-law-child-porn-pics and raise with a Biden don't-get-on-airplanes&trains-swine-flu remark.


The poll really does a great continuing job of emphasizing the effects of confirmation bias. I'm certain that the left bloggers think that Biden's gaffes are insignificant since Biden isn't an idiot. Conversely I am sure that right bloggers believe that Biden's gaffes are significant because Biden is an idiot.
5.29.2009 1:11pm
Andy L.:
The value of this post in my eyes is mostly comedic. I can't help chuckling over David Kopel continually and voluntarily outing himself as a partisan and ideologue. Why do that? How does that help his credibility on some of the other reasoned/analytical posts (granted, they are increasingly few)that he makes. I don't get it. But it is funny.
5.29.2009 1:21pm
Federal Dog:
"I had always assumed that Biden was picked to help on the "which administration would you want to go have a beer with" standard."

I had always assumed that Biden was picked to preclude the possibility of assassination.
5.29.2009 1:23pm
Constantin:
One important difference is that Limbaugh has a history of vehemently mocking and condemning people who use drugs illegally. Obama does not.

No, one important difference is that Limbaugh has never been the chief executive of a government that imprisons people for drug possession.

The hypocrisy card on this one expired on Jan. 20th at noon.
5.29.2009 1:44pm
martinned (mail) (www):
@Constantin, jukeboxgrad, etc.: Wait, I think I know how this one goes. Let's see...


And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but perceivest not the beam that is in thine own eye?Either how canst thou say to thy brother, Brother, let me pull out the mote that is in thine eye, when thou thyself beholdest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, cast out first the beam out of thine own eye, and then shalt thou see clearly to pull out the mote that is in thy brother's eye.
5.29.2009 1:56pm
M N Ralph:

The poll really does a great continuing job of emphasizing the effects of confirmation bias.



This is a good point. You know this bias exists, but it really is instructive to see its constancy and magnitude across all sorts of questions. Reason to always be a little wary of one's own opinions when they line up with one's preferences.
5.29.2009 2:09pm
levisbaby:
At this point, there is about 1/2 a degree of difference between Stuart Taylor, the VC, Rush and Newt.

Welcome to the new and shiny Republican echo chamber.
5.29.2009 2:15pm
A. Non E. Mouse (mail):
People who go on about Limbaugh and drugs have no truck with me. Out of the many surgeries I've had, ear surgeries are the most painful, and I didn't even have a machine permanently implanted in my head. I can imagine how painful that would be. I also have compassion for the injured coal miners here that get back injuries and have to take serious painkillers and some of them get addiction problems because of it.

What impressive thing has Sarah Palin done? Oooh, I dunno, govern a state? Sheesh.
5.29.2009 2:17pm
rosetta's stones:
I guess I subscribe to the theory that Joe Biden is the stupid person's idea of a smart candidate. If you're looking for the caricature of a blowhard, do-nothing politician, it'd be him. He'll forever be an accident waiting to happen, and little else to compensate.

It would have to be handled delicately, but the best thing for Obama would be to ease Biden aside, and seek out somebody of weight, someone who might help him in his reelection. Geographically, Indiana or Virginia would be advantageous places to tap into.
5.29.2009 2:30pm
geokstr (mail):

jukeboxgrad:

constantin:
This thing just reminded me of Democrats going after Limbaugh (Vicodin), when he attacks Obama (cocaine), for Limbaugh's drug history.

One important difference is that Limbaugh has a history of vehemently mocking and condemning people who use drugs illegally. Obama does not. Another important difference is that Limbaugh has been arrested for using drugs illegally. Obama has not.

More typical phony moral equivalence from the Daily Kos Diarist. BTW, where is that huge database of "quote mines" anyway, on Media Matters, or some other Soros site?

To equate someone who gets hooked on one of the most addictive drugs known that was initially legally prescribed for him by his doctor to help with extreme pain from failed back surgery, to someone who uses illegal drugs for the purpose of getting high would be merely laughably disingenuous if it wasn't so dishonest.

Then, to say that somehow Limbaugh is worse simply because he got caught, than the POTUS who admitted recreational use of illegal drugs but managed to evade arrest while doing so, says more about you than Limbaugh.

I for one would be nothing but sympathetic to even a leftie who got hooked in Limbaugh's circumstances but the two situations are only superficially comparable, and then only if you squint just right when looking at them. I don't see the hypocrisy in Limbaugh's criticizing the recreational use of psychedelic drugs while trying to feed a habit he did not get by choice.

But then again, I don't share the left's politically convenient compassion, or unidirectional honor and ethics.
5.29.2009 4:45pm
Public_Defender (mail):
I thought that the purpose of having Biden as Veep was to make sure there was an outsider non-yes-man in the inner circle. Biden's verbal diarrhea would be a big problem in a president, but having someone close to the President who is willing to tell him he's wrong is a good thing, even if the President rejects his advice.
5.29.2009 5:58pm
Careless:


I had always assumed that Biden was picked to preclude the possibility of assassination.

We're going to get all the non-"potatoe" Quayle jokes retold before these four years are up, aren't we
5.29.2009 8:53pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
constantin:

Limbaugh has never been the chief executive of a government that imprisons people for drug possession. The hypocrisy card on this one expired on Jan. 20th at noon.


It's possible that you haven't read the Constitution for a long time, but it turns out that the president is required to enforce all the laws, and not just the ones with which he personally agrees, and not just the ones that he has never personally broken. And when he does so, he's not being a hypocrite.

By your wacky 'logic,' Gov. Bush was a hypocrite because he was "the chief executive of a government that" enforced laws against drunk driving. Really?

It's also not unusual for people's attitudes about certain things (like drugs) to change between, say, age 20 and age 40. Obama was not "the chief executive of a government that imprisons people for drug possession" at the same time that he was using drugs himself. Whereas Rush was indeed using drugs illegally at the same time that he was on the radio condemning people for using drugs illegally.

As I said: only one of those two people is a hypocrite.

==================
A. Non E. Mouse

People who go on about Limbaugh and drugs have no truck with me.


The problem is not with "Limbaugh and drugs." The problem is with Limbaugh and hypocrisy.

I also have compassion for the injured coal miners here that get back injuries and have to take serious painkillers and some of them get addiction problems because of it.


I have compassion for them too, except for the ones who "get addiction problems because of it" while nevertheless hypocritically mocking and condemning other people who have "addiction problems."

==================
geo:

where is that huge database of "quote mines" anyway


Is your google broken? You should get someone to fix it for you.

To equate someone who gets hooked on one of the most addictive drugs known that was initially legally prescribed for him by his doctor to help with extreme pain from failed back surgery, to someone who uses illegal drugs for the purpose of getting high would be merely laughably disingenuous if it wasn't so dishonest.


It would be nice if the compassion you're expressing for him had ever appeared in the numerous statements he made condemning drug users. Because he's not the first drug user in history to have some sad story about how it all got started.

And he was perfectly capable of legally obtaining what he needed to address the "extreme pain from failed back surgery." Which means that when he was illegally obtaining and using drugs in excess of that, and after that, he was indeed doing it "for the purpose of getting high."

to say that somehow Limbaugh is worse simply because he got caught


Except that Limbaugh is not being condemned "because he got caught." He's being condemned because he's a brazen hypocrite.

the POTUS who admitted recreational use of illegal drugs but managed to evade arrest


Let us know if you can show that Obama ever used more than a trivial amount of recreational drugs. And presumably you know that Palin admitted smoking pot, right? The issue is not drug use. It's hypocrisy.

I don't see the hypocrisy in Limbaugh's criticizing the recreational use of psychedelic drugs while trying to feed a habit he did not get by choice.


Except that this distinction that is now so convenient for you to raise was never a part of his fervent anti-drug sermons. He never expressed any compassion for people who were "trying to feed a habit [they] did not get by choice." And his illegal drug use was indeed a "choice."
5.29.2009 10:00pm
Kevin P. (mail):

jukeboxgrad:
By your wacky 'logic,' Gov. Bush was a hypocrite because he was "the chief executive of a government that" enforced laws against drunk driving. Really?


The federal government enforces laws against drunk driving? I realize the left has not heard of federalism but it is almost always the states that enforce driving laws.

You're a partisan fanatic, jukeboxgrad. If there is any issue X, all we have to do is look at the leftist position on X to figure out where you stand on it. You sleazily hammered and slandered Sarah Palin for months on the flimsiest of issues. Biden is turning out to be the biggest clown VP of all time and it is instructive to imagine how Sarah Palin would have been treated by people like you if she had said a tenth of the things that Biden says on a weekly basis.
5.29.2009 11:13pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
kevin:

By your wacky 'logic,' Gov. Bush was a hypocrite because he was "the chief executive of a government that" enforced laws against drunk driving. Really?


The federal government enforces laws against drunk driving? I realize the left has not heard of federalism but it is almost always the states that enforce driving laws


Do you notice what I typed immediately preceding the name "Bush?" Do you recall that he had another job before he started running "the federal government?" Then again, maybe that was before you were born.

Reading is fundamental.

You sleazily hammered and slandered Sarah Palin for months on the flimsiest of issues.


If you can find an example of something I said about her that was incorrect, that would be helpful. But I think you read my posts about her as carefully as you read my posts in this thread.
5.30.2009 1:16am
Kevin P. (mail):
Got me on that one, jukebox. I did not read the Gov. part. Mea culpa.

To find an example of your slandering Sarah Palin, now that the election is over and your guy won (Mission Accomplished), just go back and read through your own posts and you will find plenty of examples. You're a true believer and I doubt you will do that. You have the same mindset as Andrew Sullivan about her - she is the devil incarnate and must be exposed as Satan herself. I wonder what it is about you guys that you find so threatening about a woman.
5.30.2009 9:37am
Kevin P. (mail):
I note you passed on the Biden comparison too. If McCain-Palin had been elected, and Palin had said even a tenth of the things that Biden has, you would be all over it like stink on s***.
5.30.2009 9:38am
jukeboxgrad (mail):
go back and read through your own posts and you will find plenty of examples


Unlike you, I check what I post carefully before I post it. And I read what I'm responding to carefully before I respond to it.

So, believe it or not, I have actually read my own posts about Palin, and they do not contain "plenty of examples" of what you claim they contain. If they did, you and others would be presenting those examples. So your claim is pure wind.

Here, I'll even give you the obvious google so you can look more easily. There's no time like the present. I'll be waiting patiently.
5.30.2009 10:34am
Toby:
jbg

If everyone on the board can predict your responses and quotes every time, then you are a hack. Do you check carefully on the big database of partisan memes?

I must admit though, the bizarre indenting schem you have picked up for the last few weeks was unpredictable...so there is something new.
5.30.2009 2:56pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
toby:

If everyone on the board can predict your responses and quotes every time, then you are a hack


If you can demonstrate an instance where someone was able to "predict [my] responses and quotes," that would be helpful.

Do you check carefully on the big database of partisan memes?


Yes, I'm quite familiar with "the big database of partisan memes." I even know its special name. It's called 'the internet.' And I pay special attention to the vast quantity of right-wing "partisan memes" that are pure bullshit.

I must admit though, the bizarre indenting schem you have picked up for the last few weeks


The blockquote style I use is in common use here, and I've been using it for a year or more (example).

I must admit though, you have an interesting relationship with reality.
5.30.2009 3:39pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
If everyone on the board can predict your responses and quotes every time, then you are a hack


One more thought about this.

So you mean that when righties post baloney, and then I show proof that it's baloney (as happens routinely, including in this thread), the person who posted the baloney knew all along that it was baloney, and they posted the baloney anyway? Even though they knew I was just going to prove that it was baloney?

Wow. I knew the GOP was self-destructive, but I had no idea it was that bad. Thanks for letting us know.
5.30.2009 3:49pm
Kevin P. (mail):
Jukeboxgrad:

Dozens of other readers have repeatedly pointed out your major and minor errors of fact and logic hundreds of time. However, you are always right and everyone else is always wrong, and you will never concede a point. Instead, you will argue any and every point ad nauseum, like Glenn Greenwald, until your opponents give up in disgust. Unlike you, they have a life. Thank you for your invitation to point out the threads where you are mistaken - I have done this in good faith before and already know what the end result is going to be.

You remind me of Tim Lambert who used to debate guns and gun policy a lot. He performed a valuable service in calling out John Lott on the whole questionnaire business. While many gun people were resistant, they eventually came around and had the honesty to admit that Lambert had a point that Lott did not convincingly answer.

Lambert himself however, was like you - he was always right and everyone was always wrong. I called BS on him one time when he claimed that burglars know which neighborhoods and which homes have guns in them so that they steal them and crimes go up. I called BS because there is no feasible way that a burglar (or anyone) in America can know or deduce this information barring the homeowner being stupid. To this day, Lambert has not conceded this point.

You are like Lambert. This is not a compliment.
5.30.2009 4:14pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
kevin:

you are always right and everyone else is always wrong, and you will never concede a point


Really? I did exactly that, here, here, here, here, here, and here. So this particular false accusation of yours is just the latest in a series. So now you have a chance to do another mea culpa.

Thank you for your invitation to point out the threads where you are mistaken


I just showed you some examples of threads where I was mistaken. But I'm still waiting for you to show examples that I don't already know about, and which I have not already addressed. In particular, I'm waiting for you to substantiate this false accusation: "you sleazily hammered and slandered Sarah Palin for months on the flimsiest of issues."
5.30.2009 4:47pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
until your opponents give up in disgust


Uh, no. They give up when they get tired of being proven wrong. Which I've done to you twice, in this thread. And if you "give up," it will be apparent that was the reason.

And anyone who doesn't have the time or energy to defend their bogus claims should refrain from making bogus claims.
5.31.2009 10:33am

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