Thursday, October 09, 2008

Biden and Palin. A heartbeat Away

Lost in all the economic news and then the 2nd Presidential debate was how simply wrong Sen. Biden was on so many things in the debate with Sarah Palin.

I came across this piece at Fox News by John Lott who is the author of Freedomnomics and a senior research scholar at the University of Maryland.

Here he details claims made by Biden that were completely false. The media likes to portray Palin as the one not quite on top of things, but reality shows us that Biden is the one who needs some civic lessons. Among them is the role of the Vice President, which Biden got wrong. Read the link to understand it. Here are a few more of Bidem's "mistakes:"

-- Will McCain's health care proposals raise taxes? Biden says that McCain’s proposal will cost people money. The Tax Foundation finds that could easily be "roughly deficit-neutral over ten years."

-- Under an Obama Administration the middle class will "pay no more than they did under Ronald Reagan"? No, the tax rates will be similar to the higher rates under Clinton.

-- Did "we spend more money in three weeks on combat in Iraq than we spent on the entirety of the last seven years that we have been in Afghanistan building that country"? No, one year’s worth of spending in Iraq equaled five in Afghanistan.

-- France and the U.S. "kicked Hezbollah out of Lebanon"? No, and it wouldn't have made much more sense if he had said "Syria" instead.
-- Is it really “simply not true” that Obama said that he would meet with the leader of countries such as Iran without preconditions?
No, Obama said “I would.”

-- Did Obama warn against letting Hamas participate in Palestinian legislative elections in 2005? No.

-- Do “Iraqis have an $80 billion surplus”? No. If oil prices had remained high, it might have reached $50 billion by the end of this year.

-- Finally, an amusing point as evidence that Biden is just one of the people he pointed to, inviting anyone to have a beer with him at "Katie's Restaurant" in Wilmington, Del. Unfortunately, people will have a hard time taking him up on his offer, since the restaurant hasn't had that name for probably 15 years.

Lott also details how even the fact checkers ignored most of this. He ends with a very relevant question:

It might not fit the simple template for a 36-year veteran of the Senate to not understand what vice presidents do (after all, eight vice presidents have served with him), but Biden knew less about this than the political outsider, Sarah Palin. Given that they are running to be vice president, why didn’t that story dominate the news coverage after the debate?