Biden Crafts Key Niche as 'Adviser-in-Chief'

VP heads major assignments, 'stirs the pot'
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 29, 2009 9:36 AM CDT
Biden Crafts Key Niche as 'Adviser-in-Chief'
Vice President Joe Biden speaks during a press conference in Santiago, Saturday, Mar. 28, 2009, on a one-day official visit to Chile.    (AP Photo/Santiago Llanquin)

Blunt, verbose, and a Beltway insider, Joe Biden could not be more different than his polished, change-loving boss, but he's solidified a key role in the administration just the same, the New York Times reports. When Barack Obama asked Biden to join his ticket, he sought a “uber-adviser” who wouldn’t see his job as a stepping stone to the Oval Office, while Biden wanted more than ceremonial duties. So far, their relationship is going as planned, writes Mark Leibovich.

Obama has turned Biden loose on everything from administering the $787 billion stimulus and handling the White House “middle-class task force,” to Afghanistan and Pakistan. The veep also has access to Obama’s full schedule and can attend any meeting; when he does, Obama often solicits his opinion at the meeting’s close. He “can help stir the pot,” Obama says, voicing views that many would be shy to articulate.
(Read more Joe Biden stories.)

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