September 29th, 2008
02:00 PM ET
10 years ago

Palin takes on Biden directly as debate looms


Watch: Gov. Sarah Palin talks about McCain's performance in Friday's debate and what can be expected from her on Thursday.

COLUMBUS, Ohio (CNN) - Before hunkering down at John McCain's Arizona ranch for three days of debate boot camp, Sarah Palin used a Monday rally in Ohio to throw a few jabs at her Democratic counterpart, Sen. Joseph Biden.

She started by taking a swipe at Biden's age and 36-year tenure in the United States Senate.

"I do look forward to Thursday night and debating Sen. Joe Biden," Palin said while introducing John McCain at a rally here. "We are going to talk about those new ideas, new energy for America. I'm looking forward to meeting him too. I've never met him before. But I've been hearing about his Senate speeches since I was in, like, second grade."

Palin, 44, would have been eight years old when Biden was first elected to the Senate in 1972 at the age of 29. John McCain was 36.

Palin turned 18 in 1982, the year McCain was first elected to Congress at the age of 46. If elected, McCain, 72, would become the oldest president in United States history.

The Alaska governor has generally shied away from attacking Biden directly while on the trail, although she did use the "second grade" remark in an interview with Fox News two weeks ago. But Monday marked the first time she has openly engaged Biden in her stump speech.

She also challenged her vice presidential opponent on policy grounds. Speaking in a state that's among the nation's leaders in coal output, consumption and reserves, Palin tried to capitalize on Biden's recent criticism of coal production as environmentally hazardous.

"We're not supporting clean coal," Biden said last week in Maumee, Ohio. "No coal plants here in America. Build 'em, if they're gonna build 'em, over there and make 'em clean because they're killing ya."

Palin promised that a McCain administration will utilize clean coal technologies that seek to mitigate the environmental impact of coal production and use.

"Just recently, Sen. Biden made it perfectly clear that in an Obama-Biden administration, there would no use of clean coal at all," she said, drawing boos from the audience. "From Wyoming to West Virginia and especially right here in Ohio, American coal resources are greater than the oil riches of the Middle East.

"And yet Joe Biden says, 'Sorry Ohio, we're not going to use it.' As for Sen. McCain and I, we will make clean coal a reality, and to help power the American economy with clean coal technology, we're going to look to the hard working people of Ohio to help us do that."

Filed under: Joe Biden • Sarah Palin
soundoff (202 Responses)
  1. Gypsy King

    I laugh at the little girl.

    September 29, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  2. Kristy

    Hey, dummy – the same jab lands directly on your running mate.

    What a moron.

    September 29, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  3. Andrea KC

    This woman is dumber than I thought. Is she seriously attempting to make fun of Biden's age and years in the senate? Has she ever met John McCain. Seriously McCain is 6 years older than Biden (McCain born in 1936; Biden born in 1942). Instead of wasting time acting like a dumb blond (no offense to the smart blonds in the world) she needs to spend her time preparing for the thrashing she'll receive in Thursday night's debate.

    September 29, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  4. Scott Tucson

    1982....let see I was 29 yrs old. I sure would like to go back to those good OLD days!

    September 29, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  5. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Palin is at her best, saying stupid things that have nothing to do with "her" qualifications as VP or issues which she's proven not to know. Palin can't talk on issues but can read a gossip column and quote from that which just ain't gonna cut it.

    September 29, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  6. Trish-NJ

    Wow! This woman is one-of-a-Kind! If I were her, I'd be very careful as to how she throws insults at her counter parts, as her running mate was a guest at the last super! Also, since she thinks that she has foreign policy experience b/c she can see Russia from her house I’d say this makes her some-what of an idiot, and idiots should just keep quiet! I can’t wait to watch her eat her words when she falls flat on her face during the debate. This is must see TV for sure.

    September 29, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  7. margaret

    she better be careful about provoking a fight with Joe. she is bound to lose.

    September 29, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  8. Greg, San Francisco, CA

    Caribou Barbie is unwise to trash talk. Clean coal is a complete oxymoron and she's a complete moron.

    September 29, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  9. Tired of W, OH

    Sure Palin. Criticize Biden's age. Never mind the fossil you call a running-mate. If she wants to make age an issue, so be it. It will come back to bite her.

    September 29, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  10. Anonymous

    palin sounds like a babbling IDIOT!!!

    September 29, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  11. S L M

    Is this suppose to be good since her running mate good be your grandfather?

    September 29, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  12. demwit

    It should be a gas... Thurston Howell III vs MaryAnn

    September 29, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  13. Sean

    Does Palin really want to antagonize Biden? And is it really a good idea to tease about Biden's age, considering the fact that she's running with a 73 year old man?

    September 29, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  14. KJS

    Sarah Palin – Wiccan free since 2003

    September 29, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  15. Bulldog

    Wow, she can get away with it but as soon as Biden says something they call him sexist. What a hypocrite.

    The more this lady opens her mouth the more i dislike her. All she can do is attack but she can't back an ounce of it up with substance.

    September 29, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  16. Former Clinton supporter

    Biden be careful- they're trying to egg you on, it's so obvious!

    They're such dirty players- she has no clue about the issues so she's diverting her comments to his age.

    September 29, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  17. Mo

    If Sarah Palin is so "experienced" – why is she being "coached "on how to "debate"? Someone please tell me.........

    September 29, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  18. Jim F

    She sounds like she wrote her speeches in second grade too.

    September 29, 2008 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  19. Cam

    Wow, have some respect Sarah.

    I mean, isn't McCain older than Biden? 72 seems to be older than 65. The bar has been set so low for this tragic VP pick that everyone says Biden has to go easy on her. That doesn't stop her from disrespecting a man who has forgotten more than she will ever know.

    It is a sad day when just because of a person's gender their opponent is not allowed to point out their serious shortcomings. If she was a man, everybody would be just fine with Biden shredding her. Only in America could a potential VP use her gender, inexperience, and lack of knowledge as a way to shield herself from scrutiny. If I was American (which I'm not) I would be ashamed to have her as a VP pick.

    I hope Biden shreds her. Then all the spinners can just say, well Joe is Joe and he went over the line......poor Sarah. How pathetic.

    September 29, 2008 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  20. Change..just the SAME

    She can't be talking about no one age. If age was the problem then McCain would not have used her on his ticket. I am so sick of PEOPLE yelling sexist, she a soccer mom, ect...SHE does NOT have the RIGHT to go around to town to town RUNNING her mouth and expect not to BE talked about.
    Biden ask her:
    -Palin depicts herself as a pit bull fighting good old boy politics in her years as mayor she and her friends RECEIVED special benefits.
    -Palin needed to sell her house during her last year as Wasilla mayor, she got the city to sign off on a special zoning EXCEPTION…and did so without keeping a promise to remove a potential FIRE hazard.
    -She gladly accepted gifts from merchants.
    -Palin’s actions after being elected mayor in 1996 raised possible ETHICAL RED Flags.

    Obama/Biden 08

    September 29, 2008 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  21. Tom

    I think Sarah Palin will do better in the debate with Joe Biden than most people think. She will spit out the lines that they have pounded into her head at debate camp. Now here is where it gets really interesting, understanding what you say and saying it with believable conviction is the real test. Smart people can generally pull this off however from what I have seen Sarah is not one of those people. I believe the rehearsed lines and gestures will come across to those well informed loud and clear. I do not wish her any ill will however the fact that she does not seem to realize she is in way over her head is very troubling . This old issue is compounded by the fact that it is obvious the McCain campaign seems to know she falls way short.

    September 29, 2008 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  22. ajks

    Democrats can not use age as a talking point, but Palin can? Again she is using her female gender to get away with what other politicians can not do.

    September 29, 2008 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  23. Heather, Cleveland, OH

    It's funny that Palin can attack Joe Biden's policy positions. It will be difficult for Biden to do the same because Palin has NO policy positions whatsoever. Maybe she'll "find ya some and bring 'em to ya", but after a month of campaigning, the only major policy position on which she has taken a stand is the one she took about following Bin Laden into Pakistan if need be – one that her running mate, the man actually OLDER than Joe Biden has to retract the next day.

    What a bumbling pair these two are!

    September 29, 2008 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  24. demwit

    Joe has hair plugs older than all 4 of Sarah's children..

    September 29, 2008 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  25. Sweetgreen

    CNN...FYI, this isn't news. Palin has said this several times. Her speeches are all the same. Palin began saying this over 2 weeks ago, now here you come with "breaking news" as if she just started this. I thought you guys were journalist. It's called research and someone is obviously not on the job @ CNN.

    September 29, 2008 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
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