October 13th, 2008
06:52 PM ET
10 years ago

Biden says some reactions at McCain events 'scary'

Biden said some of what he has seen at McCain events is 'scary stuff.'

Biden said some of what he has seen at McCain events is 'scary stuff.'

(CNN) - Joe Biden said Monday some of the reactions he has seen at recent McCain campaign rallies are downright “scary,” and said the Republican presidential ticket should be careful not to encourage "fringe people."

But in the interview with ABC News, Biden added he does not worry the McCain-Palin rallies could lead to violence as long as John McCain and Sarah Palin adequately control their supporters.

"I'm no more concerned about it, as long as … John pushes it back in a box and Governor Palin pushes it back in a box, because what you don't want to do is encourage - I don't think they intentionally do it - encourage people who really are fringe people," Biden said in the interview. He also said that what he saw at the rallies was "really off the wall" and "scary stuff."

Earlier: Biden: McCain’s speech is ‘attack, attack, attack, attack’

Biden also took aim at recent comments from Virginia’s Republican Party chairman that compared Obama to 9/11 mastermind Osama Bin Laden. The chairman, Jeffrey Frederick said Obama and bin Laden "both have friends that bombed the Pentagon" - a reference to Obama's connection to 1960's radical Bill Ayers.

"I don't believe it … I can't believe it," Biden said of those comments. "I'm surprised John McCain hasn't gone down and whacked the guy with his fist. I mean, I don't think there's a prejudiced bone in John McCain's body. But that kind of stuff is really off the wall. I refuse to let myself believe John McCain has anything to do with any of that.”

Filed under: Extra • Joe Biden • John McCain
soundoff (191 Responses)
  1. WOW!! Biff!!

    but hey….. LEWIS's remarks were the ones that went too far…

    (see how this works, people)????

    You can try and read however you want into Lewis's statement but you know exactly what he was talking about and you know it's true.

    October 13, 2008 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  2. Andy

    You know, while both sides have these crazy folks, McCain and especially Palin have stoked these folks. McCain is rightly dealing with this – but only now. But Palin really fueled these people's ignorance and she should be ashamed of herself.

    October 13, 2008 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  3. Kelly Smith

    Oh come on, I support Obama but I think everyone should know by now that McCain is putting a stop to those inciteful comments made by his supporters. I doubt there'd be any violence from here on in.

    October 13, 2008 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  4. Jill, Kansas

    The gloves are coming off Joe. If you can't take it, drop out.

    We are not going to have a White House where the Rev's. Wright and Flager walk around at their leisure and unrepentent bombers like Bill Ayers give input to policy decisions.

    Forget it-no way, no how, no Osama.

    October 13, 2008 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  5. Toby

    The Right Wing is just being the Right Wing. Same thing all over the world and throughout modern history.

    October 13, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  6. murphy

    Virginia’s Republican Party chairman is trying to regain the electoral votes that are slipping away. Common sense will prevail in the end. No more hate rhetoric.

    October 13, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  7. Liz

    Joe, I think you're being naive. McCain and Palin have encouraged these remarks. It's time to face the fact that your good friend John McCain is not who you thought he was.

    October 13, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  8. Dianne from CA

    That wasn't "fringe" that was the base of the Republican party. They are spinning it now, but the truth is obvious. These same people have been at it for years now. After this I doubt the Republican party will have many converts.

    October 13, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  9. Country Worse

    "Bomb, bomb, bomb"...you no where the rest of that story would lead.

    God forbid.

    October 13, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  10. AZ Senior

    How can MCCain be insulted by Lewis's remarks? – They were the truth, McCain needs to liten to them and handle the problem instead.

    October 13, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  11. California Gold

    Senator Biden, let's not mince words. The McCain campaign spent months sowing seeds of fear and hate. Last week crowds would hear Obama's name and shout out 'terrorist' and to kill him. This is McCain's campaign. Whether or not McCain harbors prejudice is not the issue. He has condoned prejudice and is guilty.

    October 13, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  12. N.S of Huntsville, Al

    Oh contray, JOE your old buddy has become full of rage and deception, now if you don't get that something is wrong with you.

    I like you Biden but i disagree with you on this one. It has been McCains LONG ambition to become PRESIDENT, so McCain feels like all is fair in LOVE and POLITICS.



    October 13, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  13. OBama already won

    McCain really needs to stop, all he is doing is inciting hate violence and protests against Obama. You can see the videos on youtube with many people calling Obama a monkey and other racial profanities. (and of course the conservatively biased CNN never mentions it until it becomes an obvious issue, isnt you job to stop this from happening and keep people informed)

    Their is a right way to criticize your opponents but Mccain needs all the cheap political points he can get. Where is the old John Mccain who stood for honour?

    October 13, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  14. Howard Roark

    In poor taste...yes...nonetheless, it's factual.

    October 13, 2008 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  15. Nancy, Chicago

    It's only the beginning Joe baby. You and your boy can drop out if you think it's too tough. Afterall, you want to throw in the towel in in Iraq which suits your woos appeaser personality.

    October 13, 2008 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  16. jOE

    McPain have gone too far and its time they pay for this.

    Biff: Lewis's remarks were true remarks. He was stating the facts.

    I mean this lady palin is a nutcase....stupid....She is the one that abused power, violated ethics and she is going around saying otherwise about obama/biden..


    October 13, 2008 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |

    For much too long, McCain said nothing as false rumors about Obama spread. The only reason he spoke up at that rally is because he was sharing a mike with that misbegotten woman and had no choice.

    I agree with Biden that McCain's not a racist. But he's not above permitting racist sentiment to edge him toward the White House.

    Palin is another story. She continues to incite crowds. And it's increasingly difficult to believe that she doesn't have a a few racist tendencies.

    October 13, 2008 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  18. billy

    i thought i was in another country where is the love?

    October 13, 2008 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  19. Frank from Peterborough

    A lot of this is Obama's fault for making speeches about the issues and policies and giving ideas on how to find solutions to the problems in America.

    Even at the last debate he just sat on his stool and listen to John McCain when he was speaking then addressed the issues when John was finished. All the while poor John wandered around the stage while Obama was addressing the audience in a state of confusion looking very disoriented.

    In short it's not fair for Obama to show so much stature and look so presidential which of course makes John & Sara look so desperate and out of touch.

    It's just not fair I tell ya and this is what is causing the problem I betcha.

    October 13, 2008 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  20. e.j.mohammed

    It's horrendous to make this kind of comparison and try to keep the American people living in fear. Especially at this time when the economy is suffering so and the people have enough worries, losing their homes, jobs, securities and investments! Joe Biden is right I can't imagine McCain having any acknowledgment of this chairman's comments! I f he does he should repudiate this then he would look like the old McMcain!
    Obama/Biden 08

    October 13, 2008 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  21. TN Lady in OK

    Let's get back on track and figure out where our country is going...the hatred has no place...tell us what you have in mind to pull us out of this economic turmoil and get us back on our feet, making ends meet again instead of having to rob Peter to pay Paul, so to speak. Give our country some hope for the future, and not too far in the future. We need results now!

    October 13, 2008 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  22. Patricia from Las Vegas

    Ummm, some nut case yells out a threat to a Presidential Candiate and that is scary but Mr. Lewis tells the truth and that is "too far" ... dang some people sure have a strange perspective.

    I personally think that anyone who shouts out a threat, and yes that is a THREAT, should be treated accordingly, which is to be arrested.

    The comment from Mr. Frederick is unforgiveable! To compare Senator Obama to Osama Bin Laden is slander of the highest degree.

    October 13, 2008 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  23. Frank

    I wonder if we will find out eventually that McCain backed away from the hate-mongering because the Secret Service asked him to.

    October 13, 2008 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  24. susan

    It's sad to see the level of underlying racism still in this country.It goes to show you that we haven't fully come out of that dark place.I believe John McCain has acted like Jerry Springer,stadning around watching as horrible words are thrown around and not stopping any of it..Until he was called out about it.This is not the man I want in office..Vote Obama/Biden..The choice has always been a clear one.

    October 13, 2008 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  25. victoria Durkin

    McCains statements are the mark of a desperate man. Read today in the NYT's how McCain shaped his biography based on fictional
    characters in literature. The man in general is getting his just desert, he's too brash, acts before he thinks. He's not the geniune article. He's already reached his zenith and its all down hill from here with his ego leading him.

    October 13, 2008 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
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