DENVER - Barack Obama's selection of Delaware's Sen. Joe Biden as his running mate has put the state and its Democratic chairman in an unusual position - the spotlight.
"For once, the size of the state or particularly geographic location isn't the [deciding factor]", said Delaware Party Chairman John D. Daniello, as his state's delegation gathered for its first breakfast during the convention.
"It vindicates Joe in terms of his ability and his work and his performance as a senator … It vindicates us . Just because we are a small state doesn't' mean we don't have people with ability."
Daniello said he expects Biden's sudden national prominence will make his job as state party chairman just a tad better. "It will be easier to throw events and rally people to our cause" with Biden and his state garnering so much attention. He said he received more than a half dozen calls from Republican friends "who might just vote Democratic just because of the pride they feel in our ticket."
The economy and war in Iraq are top issues Daniello said he thinks an Obama-Biden administration will dramatically change. "Our own attorney general, who by the way is the son of the vice presidential nominee, is on his way to Iraq," he noted. Delaware's attorney general, Beau Biden, is a captain in the National Guard and is being deployed to Iraq in October.
As the Delaware delegates finished their breakfast and headed downtown to the convention for a day of caucuses and rallies and the first night on primetime TV, Molly K. Jurusik, executive director of the Delaware Democratic Party, shouted "You're going to really be excited to see where we are sitting." The state of the vp pick is rewarded with a coveted front and center spot on the convention floor.