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Joe Biden update: To Ohio and back in one day

Democrat vice president Joe Biden either getting on or off of Air Force Two

A few folks may recall we've once or twice mentioned Vice President Joe Biden's less-than-crammed, less-than-transparent official schedule. So it's only fair to mention when he's publicly a busy Biden.

That would be today.

First, despite the H1N1 swine flu national emergency the president declared Saturday, the vice president is off this morning aboard Air Force Two to politic in Columbus, Ohio, for Rep. Mary Jo Kilroy. And then it's up to beleaguered Cleveland for more Democratic politics, on behalf of Reps. John Boccieri and Zack Space.

And then, to split the expenses of the day, he'll do an official VP event at Cleveland's airport with Sen. Sherrod Brown and Mayor Frank G. Jackson to point out how the Obama administration's $787-billion economic....

...stimulus plan is working, though Ohio's unemployment rate remains 10.1%. The national unemployment rate last month inched up to 9.8%, from 9.7%. (See this news video for more detail.)

From Cleveland the VP will join via video-conference the president's strategy session on Afghanistan and Pakistan. The latest U.S. commander there, Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, appointed by the current administration, submitted a report to the Pentagon and president at the end of August reportedly saying, among other things, that allies had one year to turn the war around toward victory.

Nearly two months later the president continues his strategy meetings on the report, which is either deliberate, as his political allies maintain, or dithering, as Republicans are starting to suggest more loudly. Either way, U.S. casualties so far this year have already exceeded all of 2008. One soldier dies about every 16 hours.

Late Monday afternoon Biden will be back from Ohio to attend and speak at a National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund ceremony at the Capitol and receive a service award.

-- Andrew Malcolm

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Photo: Getty Images

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Mr. Malcolm,

For the record, Cleveland is not beleaguered as you state in your article above. In fact we are doing better than most cities. Despite the "unneccessary" comment about Cleveland, this is actually a project that ARRA was designed to help. Over 200+ construction jobs will be created on a shovel ready project that will be completed on time.

Thank you.


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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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