Biden’s Stock Rises in Obama Vice Presidential Speculation

By Ed O'Keefe

Aug 22, 2008 9:12pm

ABC News’ Ed O’Keefe reports: Sen. Barack Obama still isn’t saying who he’s picked as his vice presidential running mate, but speculation surrounding Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del., has increased as the Democratic ticket’s unveiling in Springfield on Saturday nears.

On his blog, Marc Ambinder first reported on an in-bounded private charter from Chicago Midway (KMDW) to New Castle, Del. (KILG).  The flight — EJA863 — took off at 6:05 p.m. ET and arrived one hour and 28 minutes later at 7:36 p.m.

Just as the Raytheon Hawker 800 took to the sky, ABC News has confirmed that Sen. Evan Bayh, D-Ind., and Gov. Tim Kaine, D-Va., had both been told by Obama that they were not going to join the Democratic ticket.

Reached by phone by ABC News’ Teddy Davis just after 8 p.m. ET, former Sen. Birch Bayh, D-Ind., father of Evan Bayh, was not in a position to either confirm or deny the report that his son had been scratched off Obama’s short list.

"Tim and Evan aren’t in the mix? I don’t know anything about that," the elder Bayh said.

Activity outside Biden’s home in Delaware has increased this evening. 

Biden’s son Joseph R. "Beau" Biden, Delaware’s attorney general who served in Iraq in the Army National Guard, arrived at the residence as had, for a short while, both his state director and driver.

Biden, 65, first won his job in the Senate over 35 years ago and has been re-elected five times. The Delaware Democrat has chaired both the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and Judiciary Committee, and has cast more than 12,500 votes during his political career. 

A Biden pick, so goes conventional political wisdom, would bring gravitas as a running mate to the 47-year-old presumptive Democratic nominee.

Earlier this week, Biden told reporters outside his home, "I’m not the guy." 

The long-awaited text message from the Obama campaign confirming or disproving that statement has yet to arrive.

ABC News’ Justin Anderson, Lisa Chinn, Matt Jaffe, Jay Shaylor, and Jake Tapper contributed to this report.

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