Biden: A V.P., or a Cliche?

In today’s New York Times, we have the latest evidence that Vice-President Joe Biden remains without a meaningful role in the Obama administration.  Indeed, a slate of high-profile interviewees – President Barack Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Senator Ted Kaufman, and David Axelrod – attempts to define Biden’s function within the administration by using a startling number of clichés:

Mr. Biden has settled into a role of what Mr. Obama compares to a basketball player “who does a bunch of things that don’t show up in the stat sheet,” the president said in an interview Friday. “He gets that extra rebound, takes the charge, makes that extra pass.”

Of course, none of these clichés describes an actual job.  Clearly, this is the way the administration wants it: administration officials are so wary of Biden (can you blame them?) that they prevented the Vice-President from being interviewed in an article about himself!