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As Joe Biden raises money in California, will he be on tape-recorder alert?

October 18, 2008 |  2:06 pm

Joe Biden embarked today on a treacherous mission, one fraught with the potential to knock the Democratic presidential ticket from its seemingly lofty perch -- behind closed doors, he was raising money in California's Bay Area.Biden

True enough, he could hardly imagine a friendly audience at the three events that will fill his day -- a luncheon, an afternoon reception and a dinner, all at private homes. But that's just why danger lurks. With his guard down, might the voluble Biden make the same foot-in-mouth mistake that Barack Obama made in the same region a little more than six months ago?

It was at a fundraiser in San Francisco, of course, that Obama -- unaware that a Huffington Post "citizen-journalist" was in the audience with a tape recorder -- uttered his now-infamous "bitter" comments about Americans living in small towns.

Obama's rarely been allowed to forget those words since (hammering him over them was an early staple of Sarah Palin's stump speech). And in a recent interview with the New York Times Magazine, he characterized the remarks as his "biggest boneheaded move" in his run for the presidency.

Biden presumably has been prepped. And rather than go off on a philosophical tangent, he likely will regale well-heeled Californians with more than they ever wanted to know about a medium-sized town: Scranton, Pa.

-- Don Frederick

Photo credit: Associated Press

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