E.J. Dionne coddles Joe Biden 

E.J. Dionne recently had a sit down with Vice-President Joe Biden with the intention of discussing the stimulus bill. However, Dionne ended up writing about a different topic that he discussed with Biden. Note this paragraph near the bottom of Dionne's column:

Obama's handlers can be terribly tough on Biden for digressing from the narrow point they want him to make. So let the record show that he spent most of our interview ably defending how the stimulus money has been spent and what it has accomplished.

Poor little Joey Biden. "Terribly tough"? I mean can't the vice-president and six-term senator be expected speak his own mind without having to be coddled by the most friendly of journalists, lest he be chastised by the White House for going off message? Wait, don't answer that. The fact Dionne felt the need to include this passage says volumes.

And as a bonus, here's Dionne's grotesquely unfair summation of the economic debate in Washington:

For Republicans, American power is rooted largely in military might and showing a tough and resolute face to the world. They would rely on tax cuts as the one and only spur to economic growth.

Obama, Biden and the Democrats, on the other hand, believe that American power depends ultimately on the American economy, and that government has an essential role to play in fostering the next generation of growth.

Oh is that what we've been debating? Really. I don't expect to agree with Dionne, but he's usually more thoughtful than that.

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Mark Hemingway

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