(CNN) - John McCain's campaign hit back hard at Joe Biden Tuesday after the Democratic VP candidate appeared to suggest Republicans who do not support stem cell research - like GOP VP candidate Sarah Palin - are lacking in their support of children with disabilities.
“Barack Obama’s running mate sunk to a new low today launching an offensive debate over who cares more about special needs children," McCain-Palin spokesman Ben Porritt said. "Playing politics with this issue is disturbing and indicative of a desperate campaign."
The sharp response, indicative of the increasingly heated rhetoric from both presidential campaigns as the election enters the final stretch, came shortly after Biden said advocates for people with disabilities should support stem cell research.
Biden did not mention Palin - the mother of a baby with Down syndrome, and someone who has said she will be a “friend and advocate in the White House" to parents of children with disabilities - but seemed to direct a question to her.
Election Center: Where the candidates stand on stem cell research
“I hear all this talk about how the Republicans are going to work in dealing with parents who have both the joy…and the difficulty of raising a child who has a developmental disability, who were born with a birth defect,” he said. “Well, guess what folks? If you care about it, why don't you support stem cell research?”
Biden spokesman David Wade insisted Tuesday the Delaware senator's comments were not directed at Palin.
"This is a clash of policies, not a clash of personalities," Wade said. "We've heard not a dime's worth of difference between the McCain-Palin ticket and the Bush Administration on medical breakthroughs that millions of parents and doctors believe could save lives and transform the quality of life for countless Americans."
"Playing politics with this issue is disturbing and indicative of a desperate campaign." Right...and that's why Palin used her special needs child in her political speech. Way to not use this issue to play politics, Palin.
Good job, Joe!!!!!!
This guy is just WEAK! Oh, and voted for the war, and against the surge. Based on BO's rhetoric, Biden was wrong twice on foreign policy, but he picked him because of his foreign policy experience. More proof BO is all smoke and mirrors....an empty suit with a resume that wouldn't even be called back for an interview.
it is not sinking low if you are talking about someone's policies and how they are being hypocritical
as someone who is NOT voting for bama/biden, whats the big deal with what he said? Or is CNN making up stories?
Truth hurts ye GOP? Your lies and stupidity. Republican party made this election a soap opera with this drama queen. No devate on issues.
Ignorant and mocking the Contitutional Law and Community Organistion.
We don't want dummies like you. You are taking the country backwards.
Even Bush noticed how important it is to follow Obama's proposals .
This mad team is not Change.It is a disgrace.
yes, who can sink any lower than the GOP, they attacked Obama about supposedly being of the Muslim faith, but if he was, all faith have inherent flaws according to the way they are practiced by man, Biden must go for the jugular,
Did not Plain cut the funding for children with disabilities? Tell me if I am wrong....
Good shot Joe!!!! Love it !!!!
Well why don't Republicans support stem cell research?
It might be because a bunch of right-wing fanatics like Sarah Palin are anti-science.
Biden is right. McCain gets soooo bent out of shape when he's hit with the facts. Informed women would NEVER vote for McSame/Pinochio.
Is this the only defense the McCain campaign has? Whining and complaining. If Palin supports disabled children, shouldn't she also support stem-cell research?
Maybe they are guilty of something to become so angry. Stem cell perhaps could help alot in curing or aiding someone with a disability.
At least Biden was not lying.
Yeah...how dare Biden actually talk about issues rather than stick to his biography and lies about his political past. How dare he...doesn't he know this is an election about biographies and personalities? Please Biden....be like McCain and Palin and avoid the truth and issues at all costs!
Smooth, Joe. Really smooth.
Leave Palin alone you democrats are sick
Oh for heaven's sakes! Repubs really know how to play the "OUTRAGED" card.
Opposing stem cell research does indeed harm children with disabilities in the long run. Joe Biden just stated a fact. Democrats have to learn not to be cowered down by this old and yet surprisingly effective republican strategy of creating diversion by being 'oh so outraged' by everything.
People think we are stupid, so they play on us. From the 2 years ago, the only one person called out 'Change' was Obama. That time people was teasing him. Now, McCain-Palin followed Obama's lead and went with 'Change', so who has better judgment, who is real commander-in-chief in this election ?
Did Palin veto legislation before she knew she was having a baby with Downs Syndrome??
Why is the press constantly driving a wedge between the parties?
Sen. Biden is entitled to his opinion as are the other candidates.
Let's not try to make this into something it is not.
This campaign is about issues and policies, not personalities.
Press, high school is over, stop instigating and report on the positive aspects of each campaign!
There is too much at stake here!
Considering that many scientists will say that few advances are made with stem-cell research (unlike what the proponents would have us believe) leads me to think that the issue is far more political than scientifically or medically important.
CNN-you should make the headline of this piece available on your main page. You saying that Biden has sunk to a new low vs. the McCain camp saying Biden has sunk to a new low are two very different things. As you have it now, it seems like CNN is not supporting what Biden said. Please provide fair, accurate and balanced political coverage.
I'm sorry - I don't understand - Joe Biden was precisely correct. If you are planning to be an advocate for persons with disabilities, why DON'T you support some - any - form of stem-cell research? This is just the latest example of the McCain/Palin ticket's decision that the best way to be elected is to dodge the real questions and then accuse your opponent of unfairly attacking you. Shameless cynicism, in my book.
The McCain campaign is frighteningly dishonest and hypocritical. Palin herself is the person who sought to exploit her special needs child for political advantage at the convention. By addressing the ISSUE, Senator Biden was behaving appropriately.
Just a quick note as I have a special needs child. I appealed to my US congressman and also my state senator about some of the things in the community that were lacking. Never heard directly for my Dem senator but the GOP congressman promptly called. left a bad taste in my mouth for the Dem party that acts like they always champion these issues.