OK, go ahead and call me a flip-flopper. I call it "changing my mind." Joe Biden looks good to me now as a V.P. pick, after I trashed him in a one-liner a few days ago.
That smile will take down the ticket. Talks too much. Yawn.
Wrong, wrong, and wrong. At least, based on what I saw of Biden at his big introduction in Illinois today. I liked what he said; I liked how he said it; I liked the energy he brought to the Obama campaign.
Regarding his smile and loquaciousness, I read in a David Brooks column:
Biden's most notorious feature is his mouth. But in his youth, he had a stutter. As a freshman in high school he was exempted from public speaking because of his disability, and was ridiculed by teachers and peers. His nickname was Dash, because of his inability to finish a sentence.
He developed an odd smile as a way to relax his facial muscles (it still shows up while he's speaking today) and he's spent his adulthood making up for any comments that may have gone unmade during his youth.
This explains Biden's habit of smiling at odd moments, much as McCain does (but McCain doesn't have a good excuse). In Senate hearings, I've seen Biden say something angrily and intensely, but with a big smile.
Disconcerting. Leaves you with a feeling that he's not really sincere, or is playing some sort of game. However, today I didn't see any sign of that habit.
It wouldn't surprise me if Biden has been practicing in front of a mirror this week, working on controlling his smile in anticipation of all the focus that'll be on him as Obama's vice-president candidate.
Biden is going to be a great asset to the campaign. Now I'm happy that Clinton wasn't picked, notwithstanding my previous advice to Obama.
Another reason for liking Biden: he's a gray-haired, 60-something guy who is tall and in pretty good shape. From my utterly biased personal perspective (and by looking in a mirror), what's not to like?