SLIDEL, LOUISIANA – Inside the sparsely populated community room of the Peaceful Twilight Convalescent Home, Vice President Joe Biden was concluding his three hour speech on health care to a mostly unconscious audience. Though there were four women in the back of the room who were alert and functioning, they were engaged in a highly competitive game of euchre and seemed unaware of the vice president’s message. Biden wrapped up his talk with a joke.
“So a guy walks into his doctor’s office and says, ‘Doc, whenever I get up after sleeping, I’m dizzy for half an hour, but then I’m all right.’ The doctor looks over his glasses at him and said, ‘then wait a half hour before you get up!’”
Biden sighed through a forced smile and stepped down from the podium. He made a few attempts to shake hands but except for the women in the back playing cards, nobody was awake.
When the vice president left the community room he was met by a handful of local reporters who wanted to ask him about the tragic Arizona shootings. Relieved by the attention, Biden eagerly stopped to chat.
REPORTER: Mr. Vice President, how do you feel about the attacks over the weekend in Arizona?
BIDEN: I feel a deep sadness and I feel other things too. But I also feel that with a concerted effort, we in the government can fix the problems that led up to this awful event.
REPORTER: What do you think about the idea that Sarah Palin was somehow responsible for the violence?
BIDEN: Personally, I doubt if Palin was acting alone. I really have misgivings at this point of saying she alone is responsible.
BIDEN: Well, within hours of the massacre Jane Fonda said that Palin was responsible. She wrote it on her tweeter thing. But, and this is very important, Jane Fonda went on to say that Glenn Beck was also responsible and so is the Tea Party. So I hesitate to say it was Sarah Palin acting alone.
REPORTER: Are you putting that much faith in Jane Fonda? Even now the authorities are saying the investigation is ongoing. How does Jane Fonda know more than the FBI and Arizona investigators?
BIDEN: That I cannot answer. But Jane Fonda has solved many crimes and been a legitimate source for news as far back as I can remember. Don’t forget that she was married to Ted Turner for a while. In case you are not aware, he started CNN! I’m sure I don’t have to tell you guys that CNN is a pretty big news station.
REPORTER: But Mr. Vice President, is it wise to lay the blame for the atrocity on Sarah Palin?
BIDEN: I said that I doubt if she acted alone. C’mon, look at your newspaper stories today! South Carolina Congressman Clyburn said that Sharon Angle is also responsible. And Paul Krugman of the NY Times said that not only is the Republican party responsible, but so is Bill O’Reilly and Glenn Beck. Even that guy from the Daily Kos wrote on his tweeter thing ‘mission accomplished Sarah.’ So there seems to be an overall consensus that a wide swath of characters on the Right are responsible. The American people deserve better.
REPORTER: There are a lot of Democrats demanding strict new gun laws now. How do you feel about that?
BIDEN: How could it hurt? If you can’t buy a gun then you can’t shoot anyone. Case closed.
REPORTER: But some would argue that only criminals would have access to guns.
BIDEN: I’m sure the laws would include criminals too.
REPORTER: But the violence in the urban areas of the country is mostly committed with illegal guns.
BIDEN: That’s right! So stay out of those areas.
REPORTER: Mr. Vice President, do you think it’s dangerous when people who don’t have any facts point their fingers, indiscriminately blaming others for acts of deadly violence like the Arizona tragedy?
BIDEN: How is that dangerous? If the shoe fits…
REPORTER: But you may recall, after the attempted car bombing in Times Square, Mayor Bloomberg suggested it was probably carried out by somebody with a political agenda who didn’t like the health care bill. Others said it was probably Tea Party people or right wing extremists. As you are aware, it turned out to be an Islamic terrorist.
BIDEN: Yes I’m aware of that. In case you’ve forgotten, I am the Vice President.
REPORTER: So what happens if it’s discovered that the Arizona shooter was just nuts and Sarah Palin had no influence over his actions?
BIDEN: Then we will move on. The American people don’t like to dwell. They deserve better than dwelling. Now, I’m being told that I’m running late for my next convalescent home appointment.
An FBI spokesperson issued a statement that FBI Director Mueller will be meeting with Jane Fonda at the White House tomorrow to get instructions on who to arrest.