Barack Obama announced last night that he’s picked Delaware Senator Joe Biden as his running mate. Biden, who previously attempted to throw the press off track, brings 35 of Senatorial experience to Obama’s ticket. And, thanks to his seat on the Foreign Relations Committee, first hand international policy knowledge, which will help even Obama’s odds against John McCain.
Speaking of McCain, the Republican’s campaign team wasted no time in releasing an attack ad highlighting Biden’s past criticism of Obama, like when Biden said Obama wasn’t ready to be president. We’ve included that ad after below.
Biden will also help Obama rally working class voters, voters who once flocked to Senator Hillary Clinton and may have felt lost in the weeks since the Senator suspended her campaign. Without that key group Obama would surely lose. Bringing Biden on, however, may level the playing field.
In terms of gay politics, Biden’s a strong supporter of inclusive legislation and earlier this year helped Senator John Kerry overturn the ban on HIV positive immigration. He does not, however, support gay marriage, but the far safer “civil” unions. He’s also a long time supporter of hate crimes laws, as well as an opponent of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. Needless to say, gay groups are tickled pink.
Joe Solmonese of the Human Rights Campaign offered these words this morning:
In selecting Senator Joe Biden as his running mate, Senator Obama has chosen a proven and effective advocate for fairness and equality that our entire community can be proud of… Senator Biden’s record in the United States Senate is one of support and understanding that has been unwavering throughout his career.
The Stonewall Democrats also had kind words for Biden, with executive director Jon Hoadley saying:
With the selection of Senator Biden, Democrats now have a national ticket that is ready to lead our party to victory this November…We know the stark contrast between strong leadership Senator Obama and the anti-equality record that John McCain continues to build. If we are to enact significant pro-equality positions at the federal level, then we must continue our work that is helping to elect Barack Obama as our next President.
The men will appear later this afternoon for their first public event as a team.
Here’s the McCain attack ad, which features Biden’s previous criticism of his then-opponent and also includes Biden’s positive remarks on McCain..