Bad Idea: Biden tweets for Obama campaign

Barack Obama (AFP Photo / Brendan Smialowski)
It could be a big boost for the Obama re-election campaign — or a thorn in its side — but regardless of what it does for the current commander in chief, Joe Biden’s new Twitter account is guaranteed to be a good time for his critics.

Or, if you want to put it in Biden-terms: “This is a big fucking deal.”

That’s how Vice President Joe Biden explained Barack Obama’s signing of his trademark health care bill back in 2010, and Americans from coast-to-coast have their fingers crossed that they'll get much of the same thanks to Biden’s newest social media endeavor.

Vice President Joe Biden launched a new Twitter account on Monday (@JoeBiden), and if the micromessages that the United States’ second-in-command constructs are anything like the outbursts he’s brought us during the last three years, Americans can expect more than just a good chuckle from the cankerous old uncle of the Obama administration.

Although the VP’s new account has only existed long enough to spawn just a handful of tweets, seven months still stand between now and Election Day. With the Obama administration facing opposition on and off the campaign trail from congressmen, American citizens and the Republican Party rivals seeking to usurp the president from his White House role, the hilariously outspoken Biden could just make or break reelection hopes, and all under 140 characters.

During past public addresses, Biden has gone on the record to describe Barack Obama as "the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy” that was, as he put it, “storybook, man,” –but not before introducing him as “Barack America.”

African Americans weren’t the only ethnic group insulted by the former Senator, either. In 2006 he said during a live C-SPAN broadcast, "You cannot go to a 7-11 or a Dunkin' Donuts unless you have a slight Indian accent,” and, in case you were curious of if he meant it, he even added, “ I'm not joking."

During another incident, to calm Second Amendment advocates, VP Biden told them that Barack Obama “ain’t taking my shotguns, so don’t buy that malarkey.”

One would only guess why they’d let Vice President Biden anywhere near a Twitter account, but as you can imagine, he won’t be manning the helm alone. An older Twitter handle, @VP, had already been assigned to the vice president, but the eponymous account just unleashed this week will serve as a launching pad for campaign trail tales from both Biden and occasional ghostwriters. "Campaign staff will run this account to keep you up to date on what the VP's up to, but you'll see occasional tweets from Joe himself, too," an administrator of @JoeBiden writes in the second official tweet from the handle. The first micromessage only introduced the account as being the official Twitter conduit for the 2012 campaign trail, which has so far failed to provide any fodder that could be used either for against the administration’s re-election efforts. Given the limited computer literacy of the VP, though (in 2009 he asked an aide for “the Web site number” of a government-run site), that might be a godsend.

If he does get free-reign of the account, however, it also might be devastating. Although VP BP has been more-or-less behind the scenes thus far into President Obama’s oval office tenure, his occasional ramblings have led both opponents and supporters of the current president begging for more Bidenisms.

Since even before Barack Obama clenched the Democratic Party’s nomination in 2008, outbursts on the campaign trail then brought guffaws from both sides of the aisle thanks to Ol’ Man Biden. There was the time he asked wheelchair-bound Missouri Senator Chuck Graham to stand up during a 2008 speech, which, unfortunately, came only two days after a gaffe where he gave his opinion that, frankly, Obama might have been better off nominating someone else as his running mate.

"Hillary Clinton is as qualified or more qualified than I am to be vice president of the United States of America. Quite frankly, it might have been a better pick than me,” Biden told supporters at a town hall meeting only a month before Election Day in 2008.

Nearly four years later, Biden may (or may not) have finally learned the last name of that other guy, but for the sake of humor, we can hope that the VP will soon be closing in on News Corps’ Rupert Murdoch for the award of “most unintentionally hilarious old dude on Twitter” for 2012.

Then again, there is also the possibility that the vice president is oblivious to what year it is.

In showing his support for Obama’s ordered kill of al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden (which he said he was opposed to at the time), last month Biden called the decision the most “audacious” plan of the last 500 years. Was the execution a good move for America? Absolutely, most will say. Does it rival, say, half a millennia of history — much of which the United States didn’t exist for — though? In the brains of Biden, yes, and for the sake of humor let’s hope he keeps the quips coming.