From: Daniel Flitton
Sent: Sunday, July 17, 2016 21:22
To: Goodman, Meghan Hays K. EOP/OVP
Subject: VP Pool Report #3
Fluttering high above the building was the bright banana yellow flag of the Victorian governor (your pool correspondent has republican leanings - that's small "r" in Australia for the benefit of our American friends).
VP Joe Biden was guest of honour at a lavish dinner hosted by Victorian Governor Linda Dessau, including Premier Daniel Andrews, federal Trade Minister Steve Ciobo and Opposition Leader Bill Shorten and about 90 local dignitaries.
Again, for American friends, Australia's Governor-General is the local representative of the Queen, a largely ceremonial job, and at state level, Governors perform a similar (redundant) role.
Timing for Mr Biden was slightly askew - the toasts and speeches delayed about an hour with pre-dinner drinks running overtime.
But once eventually underway, Mr Biden praised what he calls irrepressible ties of "optimism" linking Australia and America.
He spoke of stories from his grandfather in World War Two and son in Iraq who each served alongside Australian troops.
He, as protocol demands, he then raised a glass to toast the Australian head of state, The Queen. (sigh)
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