Off-Message Biden Is Right: US Must Stay on Top

EJ Dionne: Vice president recasts the political debate perfectly
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 4, 2010 3:40 AM CST
Vice President Joe Biden gestures during a speech at the University of Tampa last month.   (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
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(Newser) – Straying off-message yet again during an interview on the stimulus plan, Joe Biden gave EJ Dionne a new perspective on the Obama agenda. The vice president passionately insisted America will remain the world's most influential country—because of its economy, which needs the stimulus. "So many people have bet on our demise that it absolutely drives me crazy," he said. Dionne loved it.

The Obama agenda now seems like a patriotic effort to keep America on top instead of "old-fashioned Democratic spending," Dionne writes in the Washington Post. The debate over whether America can maintain leadership through economic clout (Democrats) or military might (Republicans) is the hidden issue of this year's elections. "Transforming a listless national argument about the stimulus and health care into a larger debate over how to maintain American preeminence is both audacious and useful," writes Dionne. "Off-message, Biden found the right message."

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