The ‘Clean’ Team

Of course, the very best reason for Obama to have made the veep selection he did is that in Joe Biden, he has someone "who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy."

No, wait — that’s what Biden said about Obama.

It speaks well of Obama that he didn’t let that remark, which cast a shadow on Biden’s candidacy from the day he announced, get in his way. Evidently, Obama understood perfectly well what Joe meant — rather than more nefarious, paranoid interpretations that some may have chosen to apply — and agreed with me that Joe was absolutely right. From my column of July 29, 2007:

    Poor Joe Biden, who’s even older than I am, got into all sorts of trouble for calling Obama “clean,” but that’s just what he is. And for those who are focusing on details of the latest 24/7 news cycle’s scandal or whatever, it’s easy to forget how appealing “clean” can be to the fresh-faced.

20 thoughts on “The ‘Clean’ Team

  1. bud

    Brad, you’ve provided a good example of the silly season in American politics. Shame on the McCain campaign for sinking into the quagmire of low level politics with all this stinking nonsense about Obama being a celebrity, or Joe Biden saying something bad about Obama during the debates. The real issues are clear. And the real issues, without exception favor the positions of the Senator from Illinois. The evil, fear-mongers of the GOP will continue with the silly season. But don’t be fooled. Their only interest is to pad the pockets of their extremely wealthy friends. Anything else the McCain camp says is just a ploy to distract voters from any evidence of their real intent. As the president once said, “Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice — er, uh, ah, I won’t be fooled again”.

  2. Reader

    Oh, Bud!!!
    You KNOW you love silly season just as much.
    The Clean Team? What???
    Mitt Romney makes both of these Dems make me want to get a Brillo pad after them.

  3. Richard L. Wolfe

    Bud is actually giving McCain some good advice. Why waste time and money picking on Obama and Biden. If I were McCain I would remind the Republicans that if Obama is elected there will be no one to veto the socialist agenda passed by Pelosi and Reid. I would remind Republicans that Obama will appoint another Ruth Bader Ginsberg to the High Court. I would remind Republicans that 9/11 will be a regular event under an Obama Presidentcy, just like it was under Clinton. So, if McCain is smart he will listen to Bud’s advice. It is the if McCain is smart part of my statement that troubles me.

  4. Mike Cakora

    bud – It is certainly refreshing to find candidates who work for the people, not their cronies. Unfortunately, that’s a tough claim to make for the Obama crew.
    Take the kerfuffle regarding shifting care for the poor away from the University of Chicago Medical Center (where Michelle Obama is currently on unpaid leave from her $317,000-a-year job as a vice president) where one finds the usual suspects: Obama campaign brain Axelrod, real estate facilitator and convicted swindler Tony Rezko, Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, and Michelle Obama. There’s only smoke there, no fire, but it seems to work against your thesis. So does Biden’s connections with MBNA and the lobbying outfit where his son’s a name partner.
    While it probably won’t concern most, I’m disturbed by Obama’s long and continuing association with ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now), a group made up of folks who, if they were any more anarchic, couldn’t hold a meeting. Having run across the jerks in the Twin Cities and Chicago and given their, er, laissez faire approach to voter registration, I find it hard to believe that anyone with a sense of propriety would associate with them, much less fund them with other folks’ money as Obama did while doing that Annenberg thing.

  5. bud

    I would remind Republicans that 9/11 will be a regular event under an Obama Presidentcy, just like it was under Clinton.
    Yes, let’s remind everyone what the year 9/11 occurred in. That’s a great way to remind voters that Republicans can’t be trusted with thier security.
    By the way Wolfe, can’t you think of some other word besides ‘socialist’ to falsely smear pragmatic democrats. That’s just so 80s.

  6. bud

    Mike, you can rant on and on with your Rush Limbaugh spin points. But the fact is your guys have been responsible for an unprecidented (since the great depression anyway) loss of good jobs in the housing sector, autos and other manufacturing while corporate profits that are laundered overseas go untaxed. You can’t make a silk purse out of a sows ear by trying to make anything slightly unusual look like a scandal. The sows ear here is the failure of the GOP to do anything positive for American workers, families or anyone but a handful of filthy rich cronies.

  7. Mike Cakora

    bud –
    You are entirely correct that it’s wrong to take anything slightly unusual and make it look like a scandal. I didn’t mention, for example, that Obama’s VP choice, Biden, has ties to Rezko too

    Biden has described himself as a 30-year friend of a key figure in the Rezko trial who’s pleaded guilty to a federal extortion charge in Chicago and is awaiting sentencing.
    When the Delaware senator began contemplating his own 2008 presidential run, he initially was helped by Chicago lawyer Joseph Cari Jr., who also served as Biden’s Midwest field director in his failed 1988 bid for president.
    In 2005, Cari admitted to taking part in an $850,000 kickback scheme that prosecutors say was part of a larger political fund-raising operation for Gov. Blagojevich verseen by Rezko, who was convicted in June of wide-ranging corruption involving state deals.

    So Joe had no connection to the crime, just an old friend who had, er, hobbies that Biden didn’t know about.
    Or the coincidence with Michelle, that the hospital where she worked — the one that’s not real keen about seeing poor folks — gave her a $200K annual raise right after her husband was elected to the US senate. The following year the freshman senator sponsored a $1M earmark for the hospital.

    When the Chicago Tribune asked about this appearance of impropriety, Senator Obama remarked that he should have given the earmark to another senator instead of handling it himself. “When it comes to earmarks, because of those concerns, it’s probably something that should have been passed on to [Illinois senior Senator] Dick Durbin,” he said.

    Why disclose when you can conceal?
    Heck, I guess it’s even wrong to point out that Obama arranged for a state grant to a client of his private law practice, although that one seems worthy of greater attention, as I’m sure you’ll agree.

  8. bud

    Mike, this is pretty flimsy stuff. The key paragraphs are these:
    Illinois ethics disclosure forms are designed to reveal possible financial conflicts by lawmakers. On disclosure forms for 2001 and 2002, Obama did not specify that EKI provided him with the bulk of the private-sector compensation he received. As was his custom, he attached a multi-page list of all the law firm’s clients, which included EKI among hundreds. Illinois law does not require more specific disclosure.
    Stanley Brand, a Washington lawyer who counsels members of Congress and others on ethics rules, said he would have advised a lawmaker in Obama’s circumstances to separately disclose such a singularly important client and not simply include it on a list of hundreds of firm clients, even if the law does not explicitly require it. “I would say you should disclose that to protect and insulate yourself against the charge that you are concealing it,” Brand said.
    The key point: “the law does not explicitly require it”
    How about doing a bit of research on the Keating 5 incident. I’m sure you’ll find something a bit more damning than “the law does not explicitly require it”.

  9. Richard L. Wolfe

    O.K. Bud, How about Regressive Progressives. Who would like to take us back to the middle ages, when King Obama and his head nobles, Pelosi and Reid handed out gifts to their loyal peasants.

  10. Mike Cakora

    bud –
    That’s fine. In your book it’s okay for politicians to reward supporters with grants of taxpayer funds. Ted Stevens will be relieved.
    I did look up “Keating Five” in volume V of the Encyclopedia Pentafantasia — it’s between “Jackson Five” and “Nanny-State Time-Wasting Fuel-Saving Speed Limit” — and found this:

    After a lengthy investigation, the Senate Ethics Committee determined in 1991 that Alan Cranston, Dennis DeConcini, and Donald Riegle had substantially and improperly interfered with the FHLBB in its investigation of Lincoln Savings. Senators John Glenn and John McCain were cleared of having acted improperly but were criticized for having exercised “poor judgment”.

    Both McCain and Glenn were sentenced to re-election.
    I’m pretty upset about it all — thanks for pointing it out. The episode further burnishes McCain’s reputation for bipartisanship: he was the only Republican of the five.

  11. Lee Muller

    Yeah, Barack Obama and wife, who have hardly held 5 years of real jobs between the, go from being unable to rent a car in 2000, and unable to own any home in 2004, to having Mrs. Obama suddenly come into a $360,000 do-nothing job, have a convicted swindler help them buy a house for over $2,000,000 and collect $4,000,000 in “speaking fees”.
    But they represent “CHANGE”.
    Like a chameleon.

  12. MAB

    Just hope Obama is careful with Biden…by his own admission “I (Biden) exaggerate when I’m angry,”
    Taken from a 22 Sept 1987 NYT article in which Biden discusses his exaggerations (lies) regarding his education, his scholarships, and various awards.
    Bring back Clinton and the “it depends on what the meaning of the word “is” is” arguments!

  13. bud

    Lee, show me the indictment or just shut up about all this. The Obama’s have not been charged with any crime, none, nada, zippo. You have nothing, absolutely nothing, on the Obamas and you damn well know it.
    But it’s all you conservative idiots have. Smears and accusations, that’s it. Funny really. The Bush administration has been a complete utter catastrophe and yet for some inexplicable reason a few people still want to continue with the failures. Must be some kind of drug at work.

  14. bud

    Keven Cohen was hilarious yesterday. One of his regular callers, John, called in and got Keven’s gander up. So how does Keven respond when confronted with a few uncomfortable facts about the failed Bush presidency? He rants about Bill Clinton’s marital infidelity. Now how funny is that. Keven must not read much. His guy deserted his wife for a rich trophy bride. Yet somehow that must be different. Only in the mind of a conservative would there be any substantive difference.

  15. bud

    What a fantastic night last night in Denver. The dems are getting their act together at the right time. Caroline, Teddy, Michelle and her brother were all just fantastic. With Barack Obama in the White House the nation will be a much better place. I just wish everybody could see that. Hopefully all the silly season nonsense will backfire in the face of the GOP. But I’m not holding my breath.

  16. bud

    Well Mike I’m sure you’ll be glad to know that you won’t have Ted Kennedy to kick around much longer. Isn’t it time to quite with all the MJK quips. It’s been nearly 40 years since that tragedy. You don’t hear Dems yaking endlessly about Laura Bush killing her ex-boyfriend. We have more class than that.

  17. p.m.

    If McCain had done anything attributed here to McCain or Biden, bud, you’d be having a hissy fit about it.
    And the reason you’re not “yakking endlessly” about Laura Bush is that she’s not a policy maker and doesn’t hold public office, because you’ve been “yakking endlessly” about McCain, Cindy McCain, or anything you can stretch into a slight against the GOP candidate.
    To suggest that the Democratic Party “has more class” than anything is a stretch. Research would probably show the Democrats invented lying.

  18. p.m.

    Pardon me, bud. If McCain had done anything attributed to Obama or Biden, you’d be having a hissy fit about it.
    Your Democratic proselytizing obviously has me confused I can’t identify the enemy.
    Must be some Democratic dirty trick.
    God speed McCain.

  19. p.m.

    So confused, dang it.
    The Democrats have obviously invented a virus that negates education.
    I think they call it the NEA.


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