This morning's news summaries are full of the political jousting expected this week between the Romney and Obama campaigns. In particular, for President Obama, it’s business as usual—a Medal of Freedom ceremony at the White House, meetings with advisors, travel, and so on. And the vice president, that indispensable partner and surrogate?

He’s sitting this week out: Biden will be at home in Wilmington, Delaware for the rest of the week.

In the last couple of weeks, Biden has been particularly buffoonish, and polling data came out that shows, pretty incontrovertibly, that he'd be a drag on the 2012 ticket. Now he's taking a week off. (Even Michelle Obama has a packed media schedule this week!)

Is this just a break for the older Biden? Or is it a time out, at the instruction of the White House, so he can get his act together? Or has it been suggested to him that he might seriously consider stepping down from the ticket, and is this private time for him to come to terms with not running again, and to think about how to make the announcement, and what, if any, consolation prize he’d want?

And even if it is just a break—if Obama has a good week sans interruptions from Biden, that will itself be suggestive, won't it?

UPDATE: The vice president's office called to explain that his week off is due to the fact his daughter is getting married Saturday in Delaware. We offer congratulations and a hearty mazel tov to the vice president and Dr. Biden, and we’ll try not to dog him about his problematic place on the ticket until next week, after the happy event.

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