October 22nd, 2008
02:08 PM ET
6 years ago

Obama says Biden given to 'rhetorical flourishes'

Barack Obama said Biden has engaged 'in rhetorical flourishes'.
Barack Obama said Biden has engaged 'in rhetorical flourishes'.

RICHMOND, Virginia (CNN) –- Barack Obama dismissed his running mate’s recent comments Wednesday that if elected, his new presidency would immediately be tested by adversaries looking to “test the mettle of this guy.”

“Joe sometimes engages in rhetorical flourishes. But I think that his core point was that the next administration is going to be tested regardless of who it is,” Obama told reporters after meeting with his national security working group. “The next administration is going to be inheriting a whole host of really big problems and so the president is going to be tested and the question is will the next president meet that test by moving America in a new direction by sending a clear signal to the rest of the world that we are no longer about bluster and unilateralism and ideology but we’re about creating partnerships around the world to solve practical problems.”

Obama added that with the economy in a “free fall” the United States is more vulnerable than ever. He said because of the Bush administration’s policies the next president will have to deal “with two unresolved wars, Bin Laden and Al Qaeda communicating regularly and training folks to potentially attack America.”

The McCain-Palin ticket seized on Senator Joe Biden’s comments made at a west coast fundraiser to highlight what they say is Obama’s inexperience, and have said on the stump Obama would need “on the job training.”

Obama dismissed the notion that his group of national security and foreign policy advisors were scrambled together in Richmond to counter Biden’s remarks and the Republican attacks.

“It would be pretty hard to gather this group in two days. They have pretty busy schedules. We actually had this planned about two weeks ago, two to three weeks. It was prompted by the fact that I was focused fairly single mindedly on the financial crisis and I asked my staff to convene this group because I think it’s very important at a time when we are so focused on the economy, and rightly so, that we not lose sight of that fact that we remain threatened and there are a whole host of international challenges that we’re going to have to deal with,” he said flanked by fifteen members of that group, including former Sen. Sam Nunn and several high ranking retired military officers.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Joe Biden
soundoff (225 Responses)
  1. Gia in Los Angeles, CA

    Obama is the wise one, indeed. And, he didn't even have to suspend his campaign in order to put together a group of national security experts!!

    October 22, 2008 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  2. Becky in Vegas

    How could anyone NOT vote for this guy....He just makes so much sense after going through 8 years of an idiot at the helm!!!!

    October 22, 2008 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  3. Countdown with Keith Olbermann & the Racheal Maddow Show

    REPUBLICANS COMMITTING VOTER FRAUD ALL OVER THE UNITED STATES!!! C'MON CNN PLEASE DO YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TO THE PEOPLE OF AMERICA AND REPORT THIS FRAUD!!!

    October 22, 2008 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  4. SC Resident

    I think Obama is starting to regret that he didn't pick HILLARY!
    He wouldn't be having these headaches if he chose her, as that ticket
    would've definitely predominated over McCain-Palin.

    October 22, 2008 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  5. Becky in Vegas

    How could anyone in their right mind NOT vote for this guy...He makes so much sense and McCain just lies!!!!

    October 22, 2008 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  6. Samuel

    And Senator John McCain chose Gov. Sarah Palin over for Gov. M. Rumney as VP candidate of the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

    How Disrespectful? How Ingenious?

    Now, this is Country Forth.

    October 22, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  7. Greg F

    The great words of Immanuel Kant, "Experience without theory is blind, but theory without experience is mere intellectual play"

    October 22, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  8. M. WINNERS

    If McCain were to drop dead or otherwise become incapacitated after two weeks in office could you imagine how fast Palin would be tested?
    All Putin or whoever would have to do is ask her a question about the country's laws and it's all over for the US! In minutes we would all be socialists!

    October 22, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  9. Viet Vet

    It's nice to have a candidate that speak with intelligence instead of one that has included in his famous speech "Oceans no longer protect us" – -How enlightening!.
    And you can believe McBomb will continue in this line because his whold campaign has been to catch Obama and friends in any slip of the tongue to twist it to mean something derogatory. You don't hear anything about issues concerning this country. If Obama doesn't respond then it must be true. McBomb is the same old same old.
    Palin? **crickets**

    October 22, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  10. Carol

    Biden never said Obama would be tested but McCain would not.

    I'll take my chances with Obama Biden a lot sooner than I would McCain Palin.

    McCain's response to anything would be another war or, of course, bomb, bomb, bomb, Iran. And Palin? Don't even want to think about it.

    October 22, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  11. Cindy

    heh.. rhetorical flourishes. That's a good term to describe Biden's verbosity.

    I really like Joe Biden. I think his rhetorical flourishes compliment Barak Obama very well. They make a great team. McCain and Palin, on the other hand, don't compliment each other at all. In fact, I'll bet they get on each others nerves.

    October 22, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  12. Oakbrook, IL

    In your face Mccain/Palin!

    October 22, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  13. SDunn

    Excuse me? No one is experienced enough to be the President of the United States! NO ONE! If you people think McCain is ready from being a POW and a soldier then you're just as crazy as Palin. Look at how McCain has ran his campaign. That is exactly how he would run our Government! Look at who he chose as his running mate. That's how he would choose his cabinet.

    October 22, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  14. Steve

    More great words from the savor. Quick, put them on a tablet!

    Wake up dumbies! Are you blind to what is happening? This empty suit has control over you and will get more if elected. You dumbies belong in 1930s Germany.

    October 22, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  15. KG, Twin Cities

    Okey-doke people, when you're running against someone as Biden was in the primary, you're gonna say some things to get elected. It could a stretching of the truth, it could be a difference of policy. But often times, it's something you hope will work to get you ahead of your opponent. It also tends to be an opinion, not fact. What is true, is what Senator Biden said about a test for the new President. Historically speaking, all 1st term Presidents face some sort of crisis, sometimes it's unforseen, sometimes not. He wasn't inferring some sort of pending disaster if Obama is elected. He was pointing out that when that crisis comes, Obama will be able to handle it.

    October 22, 2008 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  16. FL Rep for Obama

    Roland Martin says it best: "The Republicans ran Congress for six years. The Republicans have held the White House for the last eight years. The Republicans have advanced the deregulation agenda that played a major role in creating the financial mess we are currently in.

    The Republicans have led the foreign policy we have in place that has destroyed the moral authority we once held. Their president is one of the most unpopular in history, so bad that he and Vice President Dick Cheney can't even come out of the White House to campaign on behalf of McCain because they are so reviled by Americans.

    Can someone please remind these folks of this?"

    October 22, 2008 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  17. Samuel

    And Senator John McCain chose Gov. Sarah Palin over former Gov. M. Rumney as the VP candidate of the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

    How Disrespectful? How Ingenious?

    Now, this is Country Forth.

    October 22, 2008 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  18. THIS IS A SERIOUS MATTER---PLEASE MAKE YOUR VOTE COUNT

    While Obama / Biden are out trying to make this country better.
    The Barbie doll is out spending our tax paying money on a $150K shopping spree.. What the hell is going on in this country.. HELL the country is in a crisis and they are spending money like it's falling off the tree. I'm sick of the loose Republicans in Congress, fired all of the AZZ.

    October 22, 2008 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  19. Garrett

    What a ridiculous explanation. I am liking Obama less and less with every day that goes by.

    October 22, 2008 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  20. Philly

    Obama has the potential to be one of the best presidents in US history. This hopefully will be a landslide victory for him. We will not be swiftboated by the idiot conservatives this time around!!!
    Go Obama/Biden

    October 22, 2008 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  21. AUSTIN,TX

    Obama is questionable candidate–I rather have Obama/Biden any day over senile McCain and 2 sentence Palin. These 2 or not the candidates to keep us safe and thats a fact

    October 22, 2008 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  22. KC

    Al Qaeda would love to see Mccain in office. See Fox news home page. By keeping us in Iraq @ $10 billion a month, plus spreading our military out even more, WE all lose in THIS country! When asked in an inteview if he would impose the draft if he where President would not answer the question directly. Vietnam anyone? More divide is ahead if we vote Mccain.

    October 22, 2008 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  23. Bruce

    Before the election we really need some reports about Palin and her husband "paling" around with the HATE GROUP AIP. They seem much worse than any one that Obama has been accused of being freinds with.

    October 22, 2008 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  24. Felly

    Obama is very presidential.

    October 22, 2008 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  25. Nelson Colorado Springs Co

    If America believe Sen McCain what he said, Talking about he has been tested. When! I would like to know . McCain haven't been President before. It funny how people be cheering him on. What Sen Bedin should have said he will be tested trying to bring this country together on economy. job, the debt, and stop spending. Go Obama/Biden

    October 22, 2008 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
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