The First Draft: “Nobody messes with Joe”

February 25, 2009

One decent laugh line in President Barack Obama’s address to Congress had to do with Vice President Joe Biden and his new assignment in the financial crisis. Obama gave Biden the task of overseeing the recovery process. The Capitol Hill audience broke up when the president announced Biden’s new task:

“With a plan of this scale comes enormous responsibility to get it right and that’s why I’ve asked Vice President Biden to lead a tough, unprecedented oversight effort, ’cause nobody messes with Joe.”

That was last night. This morning, Biden made the rounds of the morning talk shows. On NBC’s “Today” program, he said his wife Jill — shown in the gallery during Tuesday’s nationally televised speech — was skeptical about the “nobody messes with Joe” line. But then he got down to business, telling the “Early Show” on CBS television that his first move is to meet with Cabinet members “to make sure I know specifically … what resources they have available, how they’re going to distribute those resources, how we’re going to follow the money.”

It’s a full day at the White House, with Biden’s recovery meeting followed by a late morning news conference by Obama to introduce former Washington state Governor Gary Locke as the new nominee for commerce secretary (the two previous nominees, New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson and Republican Senator Judd Gregg of New Hampshire, withdrew their names from contention).

Then the president meets with Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and the top banking honchos from Capitol Hill in the Oval Office, and he’s scheduled to make remarks about the meeting in late afternoon. In the evening, Obama and first lady Michelle Obama host Stevie Wonder at a White House honoring the pop music great, who is to receive the 2nd annual Gershwin Award for Lifetime Achievement from the Library of Congress.

Photo credit: REUTERS/Pablo Martinez Monsivais/Pool (President Obama addresses Congress, as Vice President Joe Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi applaud, February 24, 2009)


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there is a saying”many a true word is spoken in jest’,and because of the jokes that are around ,that obama is trying to get joe out of the way,i think that is the reason he has to try to validate his choice for VP.joe has a reputation of gaffs and these are more apparent as he is thrusting him self into the lime light.fortunately those of us who are not among obama,s swooners, are not impressed as we know joe is always going to a liability because of his ego.

Posted by brian lee | Report as abusive

Breaking the ice shows President O and VP. B are
human. Lighten up.

Posted by Shrub Whacker | Report as abusive

Whatever degree of liability that is ever ascribed to Joe Biden will always pale in comparison to the liability that ripped our country to shreds, both finanically and ethically, whose name is Dick Cheney.

Posted by don webster | Report as abusive

Everyone has an opinion on the Obama adminstration’s plan. Regardless of one’s political agenda, we can only hope the proposal will have a positive impact of some kind because if is doesn’t, the average citizen will face something even worse than the great depression.

Posted by Gary D | Report as abusive

Somebody should just flush Joe Bidet.

Posted by Sam Erwin | Report as abusive

Better “Joe the Vice-President” than “Joe the Plumber!”

Posted by Rat Man | Report as abusive

the words “Dick Cheney” should officially be classified as a vulgarity. if Biden were a mass murderer he would still be head and shoulders above Cheney.

Posted by get a job | Report as abusive

I love it when posters like brian lee rap someone like Biden for their “gaffs” when his own post shows him to be barely literate. Yeah, Joe will be a constant source of unintended humor, but compared to the last Chief Exec. he’s William Jennings Bryan.

Posted by Andy | Report as abusive

Great comment..”rather Joe Biden than Joe the Plumber”…lol. We all have to remember…it was the inept Rescumicans and those that voted for them that got us into the mess we are in. Bush inherited a 1 trillion surplus and squandered that and added another 1.2 trillion in deficit. The Republicans posting here clearly are not qualified to comment on the excellent President Obama and the Honorable Joe Biden.

Posted by Rob | Report as abusive

thanks andy for the diagnosis but i am not paid to be smart like joe,but smart enough and secure enough to let stuff like that bounce of me.incidentally the problem it is called dyslexia like winstone churchill,and the same politics.

Posted by brian lee | Report as abusive

Republicans and Democrats, that argument is very contrived and counter productive. We have a large scale economic issue and we have the elected officials we hope have concocted a good solution. Republican or Democrat; who cares I know Americans expect politicians to do what it is they blather on about. We as Americans need a ray of sunshine and soon. The past eight years have just been miserable that is due to mismanagement not the party affiliation.

Posted by Dust | Report as abusive

the words “Dick Cheney” should officially be classified as a vulgarity. if Biden were a mass murderer he would still be head and shoulders above Cheney.

– Posted by get a job

Truly ignorant.

Posted by Matt | Report as abusive

”1.75 trillion dollars”,what a big number.i did not think it is need so many money for the recession.the reason of the recession is not the goverment have too much money, it is because most of the money is owned by the little.citizens can’t buy life necessary for they don’t have enough money in their they are scared of consumption.who would spent tommorow or the last money in this situation.i think it is necessary to make the rich spent their excessive money.if they did’t do,we can take more tax with is a very moment,we need very way.

Posted by tkbutcher | Report as abusive

voted for Obama, but am getting concerned about runaway spending. I wanted change not a blank check to government to spend trillions while I’m asked to cut back and budget. Shouldn’t government look to live within it’s means and not end up having to borrow money from China to support these trillions? I don’t know about having China as our “landlord”

Posted by tb | Report as abusive

Too much money was spent under, not only the last administration, but the last Congress. Please do not forget, that spending can’t go on without the Congress’s approval. What I don’t understand, is how people who believed we had too much spending in the last eight years, think spending all this money now is o.k. tb is right, China will be our landlord, and why are folks o.k. with that? And the help for foreclosures? You should see my house compared to the houses of the folks our taxes are going to help. I was raised to be responsible for myself, so I’m really steamed that my responsibility gets me the opportunity to help out irresponsible people who overextended to get a better house, or borrowed too much against it; and, instead of adding money to my savings for a remodel on my existing home or new home, I’ll be putting money into helping those irresponsible folks. Seriously??! This is not the change I was hoping for!

Posted by Maria | Report as abusive

Many good changes are coming out from crisis.
+ Eliminate unnecessary and costly subsides to save tax dollars. Get rid job-creation programs that are no real value and add burden to long term healthy economy.
+ Pedestrian plaza for NY’s Time Square. Go Green NY to control pollution.

Posted by tran quang | Report as abusive

Rob, Bush also inherited Bill’s Clinton’s deregulation which is the root cause of the banking industry’s present condition, AND the subprime mortgage and foreclosure mess which has impacted the American people and the economy.

As for Obama, a neophyte politician in the White House, when what we need is a saavy business person who understands that in order to boost this economy, we need to grow our business community, not the government. As long as it is more financially lucrative for businesses to move and/or grow their overseas offices, that’s where the jobs will be. Until the US starts offering the same tax incentives for businesses, there will be no job creation, other than in the government and believe me, I have been there and don’t want to go there again.

Posted by maryann | Report as abusive

[…] Obama said nobody messes with Joe….! Perhaps that’s because nobody needs to, Joe messes things up just fine all by […]

Posted by Video – Joe Biden Stimulus Czar Messes with Joe Biden | 186 k per second | Report as abusive