Someone tried to sell a videotape they claimed showed Ashley Biden, daughter of VP Joe Biden, to the New York Post for $250,000. Political payback, or just another tale of politicians' kids gone wild?

The seller showed the Post 90 seconds of the 43-minute tape. Here's the tabloid's description of a woman resembling Ashley Biden inhaling powder at a Wilmington, Del. house party:

The video, which the shooter initially hoped to sell for $2 million before scaling back his price to $400,000, shows a 20-something woman with light skin and long brown hair taking a red straw from her mouth, bending over a desk, inserting the straw into her nostril and snorting lines of white powder.

She then stands up and begins talking with other people in the room. A young man looks on from behind her, facing the camera. The lawyers said he was Ashley's boyfriend of a few years.

The camera follows the woman from a few feet away, focusing on her as she moves around the room. It appears not to be concealed. At one point she shouts, "Shut the f—- up!"

The woman appears to resemble Ashley Biden, 27, a social worker for a Delaware child-welfare agency and a visible presence during her father's campaign for the White House.

Ashley may be a social worker now, but she wasn't always a goodie-two-shoes. In 2002, at the age of 21, she was arrested on a misdemeanor charge of obstructing police in a brawl outside a Chicago bar. That story gained new circulation after Joe Biden's opponent in the VP race, Sarah Palin, was embarrassed by the revelation of her teenage daughter's pregnancy. Some traced the resurgence of the years-old story to GOP operatives. What a boringly Beltway view of a juicy scandal, where every news story must some plot within a plot: Can't this just be another tale of a powerful man's child behaving self-indulgently?

(Photo by Getty Images)