Vice President Joe Biden has drawn the ire of Republican Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign with a loaded remark he made about Romney’s economic plan this morning at the Institute for Advance Learning and Research in Danvillle.
“He [Romney] said the first 100 days, he’s going to let the big banks once again write their own rules — unchain Wall Street,” Biden said. “They’re going to put y’all back in chains.”
Biden’s comment drew this response from Romney campaign spokeswoman Andrea Saul:
“After weeks of slanderous and baseless accusations leveled against Governor Romney, the Obama Campaign has reached a new low. The comments made by the Vice President of the United States are not acceptable in our political discourse and demonstrate yet again that the Obama Campaign will say and do anything to win this election. President Obama should tell the American people whether he agrees with Joe Biden’s comments.”
But Stephanie Cutter, Obama’s deputy campaign manager, called the Romney campaign’s outrage “hypocritical.”
“For months, Speaker Boehner, Congressman Ryan, and other Republicans have called for the ‘unshackling’ of the private sector from regulations that protect Americans from risky financial deals and other reckless behavior that crashed our economy,” Cutter said in a statement issued by the campaign. “Since then, the Vice President has often used a similar metaphor to describe the need to ‘unshackle’ the middle class. Today’s comments were a derivative of those remarks, describing the devastating impact letting Wall Street write its own rules again would have on middle class families. We find the Romney campaign’s outrage over the Vice President’s comments today hypocritical, particularly in light of their own candidate’s stump speech questioning the President’s patriotism. Now, let’s return to that ‘substantive’ debate Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan promised 72 hours ago, but quickly abandoned.”
Gov. Bob McDonnell said this afternoon that Biden’s statement “seemed incredibly offensive and out of touch, which from time to time is the manner of this vice president.”
“I don’t know, honestly, the whole context, but it just sounded just very, very much out of touch,” McDonnell said in response to a question about Biden’s comments. ” I hope he’s now removed his foot from his mouth.”
U.S. Rep. Robert Hurt, R-Chatham, who represents Danville, also issued a statement criticizing Biden.
“Instead of the Vice President using his stop in Southside Virginia to talk about jobs that are so badly needed and how to put people back to work, he used his speech to divide and distract,” Hurt said. “At a time when we need to come together as Americans to address the serious problems facing our country, comments like the one made by the Vice President only serve to lower the public discourse and pit one group against another.”
– Michael Sluss