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N.C. delegates praise Biden's selection

N.C. delegates reacted favorably today to Barack Obama's pick of Sen. Joe Biden as his running mate.

“I love it,” said Vani Hari, 29, a delegate from Charlotte. “He's dynamic. He's a great talker. He goes the extra mile when he wants to jab the opponent.”

Other delegates, converging on Denver for the Democratic National Convention, said the veteran lawmaker from Delaware and chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee complements the less experienced Obama.

“He brings to the ticket what Obama is missing in a lot of dimensions, especially foreign affairs,” said Elizabeth Albright, 37, of Durham.

In a Charlotte Observer survey this month, most who expressed a favorite for vice president named Sen. Hillary Clinton of New York.

“I'm disappointed that it's not her,” said July Gilbert, a Clinton delegate from Lincolnton. “But I can see a lot of things in the future for her down the road. … I really like Joe Biden and I think it's going to make a very strong ticket.”

Ray Riffe, an Obama delegate from Greensboro, said Biden would be ready to step into the White House.

“He's very capable of being president,” said Riffe, 42. “I'm very pleased with the selection.”

In a fresh TV ad, Republican John McCain showed clips of Biden making positive comments about McCain during the primary season while suggesting Obama wasn't ready to be president.

“No choice of Vice President can make Barack Obama more experienced,” state GOP chair Linda Daves said in a statement. “By choosing a man who has been one of his harshest critics on the issue, Obama merely further exposes his own flaws.”

A handful of GOP senators, including Richard Lugar of Indiana and Chuck Hagel of Nebraska, praised Biden and his selection.

State Rep. Tricia Cotham of Charlotte, an Obama delegate, called Biden “a good fit.” So did Jimmie Lee Bonham of Winston-Salem.

“Each compliment one another,” he said.

The only sour note for Albright was the 3 a.m. timing of Obama's much ballyhooed text message announcing the selection.

“I was kind of annoyed that it woke me up,” she said.