The Daily Mail published excerpts Tuesday from an upcoming book which claims that former President Barack Obama was frequently frustrated with Joe Biden, first as a Democrat senate colleague and then as his vice president.
“Shoot. Me. Now,” Obama reportedly wrote in a note to one of his aides as Biden delivered long, rambling remarks during a 2005 senate confirmation hearing for then-President George W. Bush’s choice for Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice.
Details of the Obama/Biden relationship are featured in the book The Long Alliance: The Imperfect Union of Joe Biden and Barack Obama by New York magazine journalist Gabriel Debenedetti. The book reveals the complex layers between the aging Democrat dinosaur, who viewed Obama as aloof and condescending, while the latter viewed Biden as a rambling windbag.
“Joe Biden is a decent guy but man, that guy can just talk and talk. It’s an incredible thing to see,” Obama reportedly told his advisor David Axelrod.
One story featured in the book recounts a time Biden offered to get Obama dinner when he first joined the Senate, saying they could go to a place he knew that was “nothing fancy.”
“We can go to a nice place, I can afford it,” Obama replied, prompting Biden to view the young senator as arrogant and presumptuous.
As Obama’s VP, Biden was suspicious and defensive, repeatedly standing up for his views when they differed from the president’s. “I’m not going to grovel to this guy. My manhood is not negotiable,” he said, according to the book.
The book also reports that Obama was worried by Biden’s 2020 run for president, believing he was “tired” and that it would be “unthinkably painful” for the aging, gaffe-prone, rambling candidate to campaign. He wasn’t wrong.