Biden on VP

His exchange with Brian Williams was extremely amusing on MTP yesterday, but if you’re reading it on TNR, you’d miss the crux of it:

Mike Kinsley famously said that a gaffe is when a politician tells the truth. If that’s so, Biden made a big one yesterday: “The answer I’ve got to say is yes,” he said on “Meet the Press” when asked about his willingness to be Barack Obama’s running mate, breaking a rule that commands all possible veep candidates to mince around the subject of their own desirability with as much false modesty as a Jane Austen coquette. He went on:

Of course [I would say yes]. If the presidential nominee thought I could help him win — am I going to say to the first African-American candidate about to make history in the world that, ‘No, I will not help you out like you want me to’? Of course . . . I’ll say yes.

The problem is that, at best, that’s half the story. Biden did say that he’d say yes if asked, a refreshing bit of honesty from the veepstakes game, but he also added emphatically that he didn’t want to be asked, and didn’t think he would be asked. So to say he just up front stated that  he wanted it is a rather glaring misnomer.