Why Biden's Plagiarism Still Matters
Stephen McGarveyStephen McGarvey's weblog
- 2008 Aug 26
It's surprising to me that the media hasn't really been talking about the plagiarism scandal surrounding Senator Joe Biden's withdrawal from the 1988 presidential race. It was also surprising that Obama picked him as his running mate for that reason. As the '88 election was the first one I followed closely, albeit from junior high school, I remember it vividly. David Greenburg over at Slate gives an excellent recap of that little footnote in election history that the DNC is probably wishing didn't exist. From the piece:
Biden's exit from the 1988 race is worth recalling in detail, because his transgressions far exceeded Obama's own relatively innocent lifting of rhetorical set pieces from his friend Deval Patrick, which occasioned a brief flap last February. Biden's misdeeds encompassed numerous self-aggrandizing thefts, misstatements, and exaggerations that seemed to point to a serious character defect...
The sheer number and extent of Biden's fibs, distortions, and plagiarisms struck many observers at the time as worrisome, to say the least. While a media feeding frenzy (a term popularized in the 1988 campaign) always creates an unseemly air of hysteria, Biden deserved the scrutiny he received. Quitting the race was the right thing to do.
Perhaps people don't care anymore, but Biden should be forced to address it at some point. Kudos to Greenberg and Slate for the reminder and analysis. Read the full article: The Write Stuff?