Biden’s 35 years in Congress Won’t Hurt Obama’s 'Change' Message, Dems Say

By Penny Starr | August 28, 2008 | 7:21 PM EDT

Denver, Colo. ( – House Democrats attending the National Democratic Convention said vice presidential nominee Joe Biden’s 35-year Senate career won’t hurt Barack Obama’s campaign pledge of bringing change to the country if he is elected president.
 “Any presidential ticket is a balance,” Rep. Jim Costa (D-Calif.) told “(Obama’s) message of change, the new generation, the excitement he has been able to develop also needs to be balanced with the level of understanding and experience that Joe Biden brings to the table.”

Biden, who was elected as Delaware’s senator when Obama was 11 years old, said in his acceptance speech Wednesday that he will be part of the change Obama pledges, while at the same time diminishing GOP candidate John McCain’s military credentials.

“The choice in this election is clear,” Biden said. “These times require more than a good soldier; they require a wise leader, a leader who can deliver change -- the change everybody knows we need. Barack Obama will deliver that change.”
Rep. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz (D-Fla.) told that Biden is not running for president.

“Barrack Obama will be the president of the United States and Joe Biden has 36 years of experience in the United States Senate and has wisdom and experience and ideas, and the balance between the two of them is an incredible one, two punch to help this country move in a new direction,” Wasserman-Schultz said.

But according to a recent Gallup poll, Obama picking Biden as his running mate follows in the tradition of choosing a candidate that will “do no harm.”
David Plouffe, manager of the Obama campaign confirmed that fact, according to Gallup.

"Whether someone helps win you an election, I think, is kind of a side benefit,” Plouffe said. “You certainly want to pick someone who doesn't hurt you.”

Gallup polls reveal that Biden won't hurt Obama in the election. But while 14 percent of voters say they are more likely to vote for the ticket with Biden on it,  7  percent say they are less likely to vote for the ticket as a consequence.

Rep. Russ Carnahan (D-Mo.) said it is not change but experience that Biden brings to the Democratic ticket.

“I think Joe Biden is uniquely qualified to help rebuild our economy and our damaged image around the world,” Carnahan told “He’s been a champion for working class folk his whole life.”