About a month ago I'm flying home from New York and I had a connecting flight in Charlotte, North Carolina. I'd never flown through Charlotte before, and would later discover the airport gates were laid out by an architect thinking it would be cool to separate the gates by about five football fields.
Anyway, on this day the flight is going smooth. We actually took off on time (A small miracle flying out of New York) and were getting ready to land. Not a cloud in the sky. Beautiful day.
Until the pilot came on the intercom. "Ladies and gentlemen, we're going to be in a holding period indefinitely because Joe Biden's plane is on the ground. No one is permitted to land or take off right now."
Now over the years I've heard the typical groans when announcements of weather or equipment delays were announced. But this little bit of information really struck a nerve with the passengers, many of whom were business travelers who had appointments to make. And more importantly, like me, connections to make.
The comments that floated around the cabin were priceless. The old Jewish man with the yarmulke sitting behind me called Biden an unflattering Yiddish term. Some guy from Charlotte wondered aloud why the VP didn't use a private airport where he wouldn't have to inconvenience everyone. Another man said, in a pretty loud voice, "He just lost my vote."
Forty minutes later we were given clearance to land. I looked at the board, and of course, the domino effect had taken place. Everything was delayed by forty minutes. Which of course would no doubt create another domino effect across the country.
After getting in my two mile run to my connecting gate, I noted Senator John McCain was in line to board my flight. This part of the story will come into play later. I had never met him so I went up and introduced myself. Nice guy.
So now we board the flight and we've taxied down the runway. And then the dreaded intercom again.
"Ladies and gentlemen, we are not able to take off because of Air Force Two. There will be an indefinite delay."
A guy a few rows in front of me, who had obviously been delayed on a previous flight, yells, "Again with Joe Biden!" The guy next to me says, "He's just doing it to get back at John McCain."
So, after all those delays, I'm just wondering how many passengers got ticked off that day in North Carolina. Granted, not all of them live there. But if Romney carries that state by a handful of votes, you can trace it back to the day the VP tied up the airport.
And that's the only prediction you'll get out of me.