(CNN) - While President Obama took a measured tone in referencing his predecessor during the Oval Office address on Iraq last month, Vice President Biden appeared to go considerably further Thursday in his praise of former President Bush.
"I've never known a time when you didn't care about what happened. We disagreed on policy. You deserve a lot of credit, Mr. President," Biden, looking straight into the camera, told Bush during an appearance on The Colbert Report Wednesday night.
"Mr. President, thank you," Biden also said. "You've honored these guys. You've honored these women. You've honored these troops."
The comments surpassed those of Obama, who, in his address announcing the end of combat missions in Iraq, thanked the former president for supporting the troops but refrained from crediting him for his role in conducting the war – specifically his implementation of the surge strategy in 2007 that is widely credited with improving security conditions in the country.
The move riled many Republicans who say the risky strategy - which both Obama and Biden opposed when they were presidential candidates during the early stages of the 2008 race for the White House - was vital to bringing about an end to the conflict.
Biden also tried out a new gig Wednesday night, delivering hot dogs to Iraq War veterans in the show's audience – a move that was played off as a surprise to the mock conservative talk-show host:
"Hey, hot dog guy!" Colbert yelled.
"Hey, man – to you, it's Mr. Vice President hot dog guy!" said Biden, revealing his face. "Read your Constitution, man," Biden continued. "I got two constitutional duties."
"I thought it was just breaking ties in the senate?" Colbert responded.
"No, the other was giving hot dogs to returning warriors," said Biden.
I appreciate Vice President Biden even though I disagree with much of his ideology. He is a straight talker who says what he thinks, and that can be quite refreshing in this age of political subterfuge.
Well put and exactly right Mr Biden.
You are a bigger man than the "president", who lacks any gravitas, guts or scruples to admit he was wrong.
Just like Fonzie from years ago who couldn't say the word wrong, the "president" lacks the same fortitude.
This "president" jumped the shark months ago just like Happy Days did (therefore the term "jumped the shark" was born).
My fellow veterans deserve hot dogs and respect and to be taken care of LONG BEFORE ONE ILLEGAL GET'S A DIME OF MY MONEY.
Good job Mr. Biden
Better watch out... most liberals I know will consider these to be fighting words. I even witnessed one of them jumping up and down yelling " I hate Bush" over and over again ... I realize this is playground behavior .... but what else can you expect?
I didn't here him say that his policy proposal was dead wrong in splitting Iraq up into 3 seperate parts or to say that the surge would never work in Iraq.And the words he said praising Bush should have been said by Obama.
Can't wait to see the Republicans come in and start complaining about this, but, I'm sure they will... they're that predictable.
I'd give Bush more credit if he hadn't made jokes about "where's that missing WMD, ha ha ha" after he sent our troops in to die for a mistake he manufactured. I don't think you "honor" someone by joking about your foul-up that took them away from their families for years, or cost them limbs and lives.
Biden's a much nicer guy that I am.
By saying this I guess he is hedging that when he and Obama are booted out of office in 2012 his name will be less trashed, because of this administrations current and future failed policies, than what the two of these clowns have done to Bush.
Joe is a class act. He always speaks from the heart and he often says what other politicians don't have the stones to mention. I think most of us consider President Bush a sincere, yet somewhat naive leader. President Bush made the same mistake as President Carter, surrounding himself with people sporting a personal agenda – for greed or power.
Wow!!! Im a republican, and I know what he is doing isnt very statesman like, but I have to give him kudos for what he said about president Bush, and interacting with the troops.
So much more classy than any Republican to date. Kudos to you and Stephen Colbert for honoring the troops in such a classy way.
I strongly disagree with Biden on this point, but, you have to give him credit for a type of bipartisanship you will never see from the right.
Don't look now folks, but Biden has said something smart.
wow Biden did a good thing! Amazing.
I have no doubt that President Bush had good intentions in the war with iraq but his judgement and ability to stick to the Constitution of the USA and for that matter International considerations left a lot to be desired. Bush fired the General that told him the number of troops needed to secure Iraq was over 220,000, lied about weapons of mass destruction, and Iraq was not a threat to the USA and was locked down by International Sanctions since the Kuwait Invasion.
In his strike on Iraq without provocation, Bush set a dangerous precedent in a Nuclear world and the cost to the USA in both lives and collateral damage to iraqi civilians as well as huge financial costs that profited our Defense Industries and the Vice-President personally raised serious legal allegations against the Bush-Cheney Administration as well as collapsing a strong economy. I do not think Bush deserves any praise at all!
Gotta love Joe Biden – if nothing else, the man says what's on his mind. He is a true public servant. He was voted the 5th "poorest" congressman during his days in the Senate. He never used his position for persanal gain. He took a train to work most days from his home in Deleware.
He may have a thing for gaffes, but again, he says it like he sees it. Gotta love him for that.
Nothing more than political grand standing BS, in front of the camera. What else could Biden do, slam Bush! Like that would have gone over well.
Wow, Biden will say anything to get a laugh.
Interesting the tone the Pres and VP have recently taken in regard to Pres Bush. Could it be a move to try to appear less anti-Bush/more-central in the run-up to midterm elections?
Uh-oh, a clear sign that the winds are changing... Liberals do not have a clear perspective of the world we live in. It is easy for an elitist politician that jets around drinking taxpayer booze and eating taxpayer meals while collecting a taxpayer paycheck on top of their lobbyist kickbacks and Union payoffs to think that everyone should eat cake. Europe has opened the doors to Muslims, they have bred like rats now dictating to the very people that tolerated their migration. Wake up America, it matters not of your religious beliefs, it is all about power and control of your civil liberties, they do not match those of Islam.
Good for Biden and a good attempt to tone down the stupidity so prevalent in washinton, especially from the republican party and talk radio propagandists and talk show propagandists from fox. However, the repubs will continue with their ignorance and arrogance and they will use this for their self serving propaganda. But kudos to biden.
Thank you Mr. vp for giving him credit. For all the blood of our dead men and women in arm force. You forgot about dick head Cheney.
Look for Democrats to try to get GWB back in the spotlight by any means possible in the next 8 weeks, even by saying nice things. They need an unpopular boogyman to run against, since their policy platform is a sure loser.
It is all a mute point as the war that Bush initiated has killed thousands of Americans and others and hundreds of thousands(maybe millions) of citizens of Iraq. Sorry Vice President Biden but I don't see much credit to be offered.
Good sense of humor by the way with the hot dogs!
"It's Mr. Vice President hot dog guy!" How funny.
Unlike today's Republican leaders, our cureent crop of Democrats are capable of doing what Mr Biden did,
No one is 100% bad- no one 100% perfect. Bush treated our troops well and our economy like his friends personal portfolio- every tax break and deregulation was designed to benefit a wealthy business man's bottom line.
Whoa, Obummie will think this is another Biden gaffe. Obummie is a narcissist and a classless idiot. Biden you showed class when you complimented Bush !!