A couple of weeks ago, the Obama campaign released a campaign ad sneering that John McCain doesn’t use a computer. (Link via Power Line.) Protests soon arose that the ad was a cheap shot, since the reason McCain doesn’t use a computer is because his Vietnam-era injuries make it very uncomfortable for him to use a keyboard. (McCain also has trouble with things like tying his shoes, combing his hair, and putting on a shirt, for the same reason.)
Most people had given up waiting for the Obama campaign to apologize, or express regret, or at least disclaim any intent toward horrendous taste, in some buried statement issued over a weekend when nobody would read it.
As it happens, no such statement has been forthcoming from the Obama campaign, let alone Sen. Obama himself, but a surprise confession has issued from what you might think was the unlikeliest of places: Obama’s running mate, Joe Biden.
Details, plus a whiplash-inducing UPDATE, below the break.
During a CBS News interview, Biden’s famously runaway mouth actually worked to his credit, though it didn’t make the Obama campaign in general look too fabulous:
Asked about the negative tone of the campaign, and this ad in particular, during an interview broadcast Monday by the “CBS Evening News,” Obama’s running mate, Sen. Joe Biden, said he disapproved of it.
“I thought that was terrible, by the way,” Biden said.
Asked why it was done, he said: “I didn’t know we did it and if I had anything to do with it, we’d have never done it.”
By dissociating himself from the campaign’s decision-making process while condemning the ad as out-of-bounds, Biden manages to make himself look gracious while leaving Obama and the campaign holding a big ol’ bag of poop. Either Biden is chafing at being overshadowed not only by Obama but by Sarah Palin as well (turns out she’s 30 times the draw he is), or he’s such a loose cannon that even when he does something nice he damages the people he’s supposed to help.
UPDATE: The new line for Biden, freshly back from the woodshed: McCain deserved it.
I was asked about an ad I’d never seen, reacting merely to press reports. As I said right then, I knew there was nothing intentionally personal in the criticism of Senator McCain’s views which look backwards not forwards and are out of touch with the new economic challenges we face today. Having now reviewed the ad, it is even more clear to me that given the disgraceful tenor of Senator McCain’s ads and their persistent falsehoods, his campaign is in no position to criticize, especially when they continue to distort Barack’s votes on an issue as personal as keeping kids safe from sexual predators.
Statement released by Obama campaign. OK, message received: we now return you to your regularly scheduled Joe Biden.