McNerney downplays Biden visit

The campaign of Rep. Jerry McNerney, D-Pleasanton, downplayed this morning’s fundraiser in Oakland with Vice President Joe Biden, carefully keeping the location and details of the visit under wraps.

His campaign spokeswoman Sarah Hersh told me last night that no details were being released because the event was not open to the press.

No offense, but when did open press equate to news value? And what possible down side could there be to news of  McNerney having eggs and bacon with the Vice President of the United States?

My colleague, Josh Richman, unearthed a few morsels this morning, which you can read here. But it was held at the Claremont Hotel, where Biden spent the night. Biden was scheduled to host a fundraiser for Sen. Barbara Boxer later today.

Of c0urse, the campaign of McNerney’s GOP challenger, David Harmer, had something to say about it:

Congressman Jerry McNerney has brought to California today one of the chief architects of the overspending in Washington – Vice President Joe Biden – who is helping raise money for the embattled Congressman’s re-election.

But to avoid the scrutiny of associating with the unpopular Vice President, Jerry McNerney has quietly taken Joe Biden to a high-dollar venue in Oakland, CA, dozens of miles away from any 11th Congressional District voter.

Moreover, details about the Biden event have been carefully guarded from the public as McNerney seeks to avoid being seen in public with the Vice President.

“When a major national figure comes to town, campaigns typically announce it to the world,” said Harmer spokesman Tim Clark. “But details about today’s Biden event have been as elusive as a Jerry McNerney town-hall meeting. They just don’t exist anywhere in the public.”

“No press invites, no insider releases, nothing, nada,” continued Clark. “It must have been a real challenge for Biden to agree to secrecy, especially considering his talent for self promotion. One thing is for sure, with all the hot air from this California heat wave blowing around, Biden will fit right in.”

Lisa Vorderbrueggen