(CNN) - Joe Biden's off-the-cuff remarks on the trail have at times taken the Obama campaign off-message, but the Delaware senator's latest riff just may have landed him in hot water with voters - and die hard football fans - in a key battleground state.
Speaking to members of the University of Delaware football team Friday morning, the Democratic VP candidate said he thinks the Fightin Blue Hens (1-1 this season) could thrash a certain team from Ohio.
"I was out in Ohio," he said while fiddling with a football in his hands. "I told the folks in Ohio that we'd kick Ohio State's ass!" (It remains unclear if Biden actually ever told Ohio voters this.)
Biden, a proud University of Delaware alum, was clearly trying to rally his Division 1-AA team ahead of their match-up with Furman this weekend, but the comments couldn't have come at a worse time for faithful Buckeye fans who saw their team suffer a 35-3 trouncing at the hands of USC last weekend.
The comments also come as polls show the race in Ohio could hardly be tighter: A CNN poll of polls in the Buckeye state shows Obama holding a slim 1 point lead there. Close enough, presumably, that enough angry OSU fans could just make the difference - at least that's what Republicans are hoping.
The state GOP is already attacking the Democratic ticket over the comments, as well as his comments yesterday suggesting it was patriotic for some wealthier Americans to pay higher taxes.
"As if his comments about it being a patriotic duty for Ohioans to pay higher taxes weren't bad enough, now Biden is taking pot shots at the Buckeyes," GOP State chair Bob Bennett said. "Barack Obama and Joe Biden must really think they can win this election without Ohio, because they're doing their best to lose it with stupid comments like these. Keep talking, Joe."
David Wade, a spokesman for Biden said, “I think this episode explains exactly why we’ll win Ohio: Joe Biden is loyal to his home team, and John McCain is loyal to President Bush."
"We forgive the Republicans on this one, though," he added. "After watching John McCain flip flop on everything from taxes to torture, they’re just mystified by someone who takes a position and sticks with it.”
UPDATE: Michigan Democrats, fans of OSU arch rival University of Michigan, weighed in on the back-and-forth, calling John McCain a "Panderer in Chief" for recently purchasing Ohio State apparel on a campaign swing.
"John McCain won't be hailing any victors on Election Day if he thinks Michigan fans will let this recent pander slide," said Liz Kerr, a spokesperson for the Michigan Democratic Party.
If I did not know better I might think that the man likes to stick his foot in his mouth
What is really going on CNN??? Honestly, I am a huge supporter of CNN but this is a little stretch to think that being a fan of the team where you went toschool is going to make a huge difference in the political process. Regroup CNN!!!!!!
Are you kidding?! If voters are turning against Biden because of a comment he made to a rival team to get them amped up before a game, what kind of use of democracy is this! How petty and juvenile for someone to say "You're cheering for a sports team in another state? Well I'm not voting for you!" I honestly don't think the American population is that petty, or at least I hope not.
haha...it's funny to see the Republicans so desperate that they'll try to turn college football rvialry comments into political leverage...it's so sad
And for those of you who think McCain's "Bradley Effect" campaign strategy is going to work, I would direct your attention to the 2006 election of Harold Ford. Wake up. McCain is only trying to make it seem like he'll bring change and reform now (like Obama has been saying all along) because he thinks it will convince Obama supporters who aren't sure if they really want to vote for a black guy to come vote for the white guy who will give you the same things without the blackness.
How can this be of relevance to any political campaign???? Wow!
I dont think the people of ohio arethat stupid. To change their vote because a running VP doesnt like their football team. If so GOD help us all...!!
Why is this news? I could see if Sen. Biden made a racist or sexist comment. This is absolutely ridiculous. What people should be getting upset about is the fact that people hit by hurrican Ike are still without power, trying to make it in very poor conditions and even worse, a lot of them have lost everything. Get mad about that!
Are you kidding me? Hot water? Stop it, CNN. STOP IT. This is an insult to the intelligence of Ohio voters.
The best political team my foot!
Get real and report only issues that matter to the U. S. voter. Leave this kiind of stuff to the National Inquirer. I thought CNN was a serious new network.
OK-So Biden likes sports, and trash talks just like every other sports fan.
More importantly, why does Sarah Palin hate America enough to support the Alaska Seccessionist Party.
So a football team is more important than the economy.....republicans are so silly and stupid.
This is just plain STUPID !!! C'mon CNN !!???
OMG, the election is over because of football....
As a Buckeye Alum, I don't think that was a wise comment to make. Ohioans take OSU college football verrrrry seriously. Poor judgment, but I will still his poor judgment in a statement or team choice over the reckless McCain and pitiful Palin.
And the Ohio GOP's response – TOTALLY ridiculous. The last thing on any responsible person's mind in the election booth will not be football. The GOP is pushing independents away with this nonsense.
Wow CNN, very impressive work! LOL
wake up! that's sport
Go OBAMA-BIDEN 08
By that logic I shouldn't vote for Obama since Biden wants his alma mater to win over my alma mater? Give me a break.
Besides, my alma mater (Virginia Commonwealth) beats up on Delaware in men's basketball anyway.
Vote for common sense, not lipstick!
omgaaaa are you serious cnn.... lol its sports football and men.... omgahhh this is to stupid
Must be a real slow news day for this to make the front page of CNN. Oh, maybe not......
On one hand I think Biden sometimes needs to think before he speaks, but on the other hand ... he's talking about his alma mater ... of course he would say something like that ... who wouldn't??
This just in...College football fans will determine our next president. In other news, wrestling fans turn against McCain, who has shown support for the Iron Sheik!
Really no story here!!!! EVER HEARD OF TRASH TALKING!!! No sense of humor! Let me real!!!
Sorry, I don't follow basketball
I think it's great that he has a loyalty for his team. It has nothing to do with the people in Ohio....
Why did Obama pick Biden? Why?