The Washington Post

Biden’s book collection includes Cheney tome

Vice President Biden served turkey; meanwhile, we scanned his shelves. (Cliff Owen/AP)

While our colleague Greg Jaffe was inhaling second-hand turkey aroma, he and a handful of other reporters covering the Bidens’ meal for wounded troops were escorted into a living room in the residence, where the shelves were filled with family pictures and the family’s books.

So what’s a naturally nosy reporter to do but take notes?

Jaffe provides this report on the state of Biden’s literary tastes, and he notes that the selection skews heavily toward searing critiques of the George W. Bush administration and of Biden’s predecessor, Dick Cheney. To wit:

“Angler: The Cheney Vice Presidency”: Former Washington Post reporter Barton Gellman’s book chronicles how the canny and often secretive former veep wielded the power of his office.

“The $3 Trillion War”: Joseph E. Stiglitz and Harvard professor Linda J. Bilmes document the staggering costs of the eight-year-long Iraq conflict.

“The Dark Side”: New Yorker writer Jane Mayer argues that Cheney and David Addington, one of his closest advisers, used the heightened fear after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks to enhance presidential powers and eviscerate Constitutional protections.

Emily Heil is the co-author of the Reliable Source and previously helped pen the In the Loop column with Al Kamen.


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