This? This is supposed to be a bad thing for Obama and Biden?
Vice President Joe Biden got caught in a stunning photo with a female biker sitting on his lap.
The Associated Press snapped the shot at Cruisers Diner in Seaman, Ohio on Sunday....
Four years ago, John McCain attended the annual biker rally in Sturgis, South Dakota; he even said his wife should enter the Miss Buffalo Chip beauty pageant there. His '08 running mate attended a biker rally in 2011 when it appeared she might be ready to jump into the presidential race.
But now this kind of thing is unacceptable to the right. Romney? Ryan? The Republicans on the ticket are the clean-cut, preppy, brown-nosers. They're the Omegas in Animal House. They think America wants the Omegas to win.
Another photo of Biden:
This is exactly how you campaigned back in Boston when I was a little kid, at the tail end of the Last Hurrah era. This is supposed to be bad for Democrats?
(And I'll throw in the pizza place owner who gave Obama a bear hug -- a great image. And, no, I don't think it hurts Obama in any meaningful way to have described "Made in the USA" as "three proud words" -- but this trivial gaffe that inspires a sniffy "Who Is Dumber, Joe Biden or Barack Obama" headline from the Omega-iest of right-wing blogs, Power Line).
Here's why none of this is bad for Obama and Biden.
First of all, the message of all this is that the Obama administration is stupid, bumbling, ineffectual, asleep at the switch, fiddling while Rome burns. The problem is, Republicans have been telling us for four years that the Obama administration is a ruthlessly efficient machine systematically and relentlessly dismantling everything that's good about America in a deliberate, cold-blooded effort to enslave the population and destroy freedom. You can't be both. Either you're a juggernaut or you're stumblebums -- both of these things can't be true. Even people who don't buy the former message in its entirety have absorbed the notion that these guys have done stuff. So you can't turn around and try to convince people that they're goof-offs. (This is also why Republicans can't successfully attack Obama as an empty chair, or as a guy who plays too much golf, though Repubs will never stop trying.)
Beyond that, there's the fact that the most important dividing line in American politics is the perceived line between heartlanders and cosmopolitans. Republicans have defined every Democrat in the last several decades as cosmopolitan, often to those Democrats' detriment. It's becoming less of a handicap -- otherwise Obama, unlike Dukakis and Kerry, couldn't have won -- but it still hurts in the red states and rural areas. But now, after relentlessly portraying Obama as an urban, urbane, Ivy League, effete, elite slickster, Republicans are trying to say that he and Biden are rubes. It doesn't work. It can't work.
The parties really are switching positions:
On the campaign trail, the most thunderous applause for Mr. Ryan often comes when a local politician introducing him mentions the Oct. 11 debate with Mr. Biden. The Republican faithful are spoiling for the matchup, which they see as pitting Mr. Ryan, with his cold command of budget facts, against an outclassed Mr. Biden, whom they portray as gaffe-prone...."Cold command of budget facts"! Forget whether it's true. Republicans apparently think there's nothing voters love more than that.