Biden and Dodd: a Stupidity Sandwich

Senators Joe Biden (D., Del.) and Chris Dodd (D., Conn.) in 2007 (Brian Snyder/Reuters)

I’ll get into this at more length later, but there’s a problem with Joe Biden’s naming Chris Dodd to run his vice-presidential search beyond the obvious waitress-sandwich stuff.

The Democrats talk a pretty good “diversity” game, but think about what that really looks like in a party where the bosses are rich and white and the voters are less affluent and less white. Joe Biden, an eternal party hack and white-guy visitor from the age of black-and-white television, pledges to name a woman to the VP spot. Okay — which woman? The woman recommended to him by Chris Dodd, eternal party hack and white-guy visitor from the age of black-and-white television.

A model of internal party politics in which the young, minorities, and women advance only at the sufferance of such creatures as Chris Dodd seems to me to be at odds with how the Democrats talk about diversity.

The question of what decisions get made is separate from the question of who gets to make those decisions. Almost 30 years after Bill Clinton’s promise of a cabinet “that looks like America,” the Democrats’ decisions are being made by a 75-year-old prep-school graduate at a white-shoe law firm first elected to federal office in 1974. I’m sure the Democrats don’t need me to be irritated in their behalf, but this seems like an obviously bone-headed move to me.

That Biden made this decision and that nobody around him stopped him is of interest.

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