Biden hits Santorum over 'snob' comment
March 1st, 2012
10:29 AM ET
3 years ago

Biden hits Santorum over 'snob' comment

(CNN) - Vice President Joe Biden turned his fire on Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum Thursday, saying his recent "snob" comment about college represents a disconnect with the American people.

"I think there's an ideological divide between Rick Santorum and all of America on this. I don't think it's between the parties," Biden told Radio Iowa. "It's not about snobbery. It's about allowing people to live a life like their parents lived, in a middle-class environment, decent home, good school, a promise to send their kids to college and being able to take care of their parents and not have to be taken care of themselves by the time they're their parents' age."

– Follow the Ticker on Twitter: @PoliticalTicker

Santorum recently categorized President Barack Obama as a "snob" for calling on every American to attend college.

"Oh, I understand why he wants you to go to college. He wants to remake you in his image," Santorum said last week. "I want to create jobs so people can remake their children into their image, not his."

Santorum has said he supports different types of higher education, not just four year degrees, saying education should vary based on an individual's strengths.

But Biden, who is in Ames, Iowa Thursday for a speech, said college degrees increase the probability of success.

"Look, I've been going college campuses and high schools all across America for the past six months talking about what the facts are," Biden said. "Six out of the 10 jobs over the next 10 years are going to require … either a certificate or a degree beyond high school. It's that simple."

The vice president's remarks follow similar comments from Obama Monday, when he seemingly addressed Santorum, without using his name.

"When I speak about higher education, we're not just talking about a four year degree," Obama said. "We're talking about somebody going to a community college and getting trained for that manufacturing job that now is requiring somebody walking through the door handling a million dollar piece of equipment, and they can't go in there unless they've got some basic training beyond what they received in high school."

Also see:

Romney stumbles over question about GOP contraception push

GOP spotlights president's 100th fundraiser

Poll: Republicans win enthusiasm contest

Crisscrossing the country in search of delegates


Filed under: 2012 • Education • Joe Biden • Rick Santorum
soundoff (230 Responses)
  1. Rudy NYC

    Santorum is on the wrong side of an issue again. Have you ever heard him use phrases like the '"will of the people" that we used to hear in every Republican sound bite on the evening news? Nope, not me. He's too busy expressing his "will to the people" to do that. Not God's will, but his own will.

    March 1, 2012 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  2. bcm

    Rick Santorum is so disgusting I can hardly look at him anymore. Does he not bother to educate himself on any subject before he speaks? Maybe this is Michelle Bachmann's long lost twin brother.

    March 1, 2012 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  3. Diane

    Maybe just another sign of how out of touch Santorum is with the real world? At least in my state, the trade and vocational schools are all referred to as "technical colleges", so why would he assume college means a four year university degree? Technical colleges offer wide ranges of certificate programs and associate degrees that give people necessary skills and great opportunities if a bachelor's degree program is not what they are looking for.

    March 1, 2012 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  4. Grand Oil Party

    Santorum is sending his kids to college, but doesn't want you to do the same. Who's the snob here? The guy who says everyone deserves to go to college, or the guy who say just my kids deserve to go to college.

    March 1, 2012 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  5. blake

    Does anyone take Biden seriously?

    As a former public school high school teacher and someone who spent 15 years working in a higher education setting, I completely agree with Santorum. College is NOT for everyone. There are many folks in blue collar occupations that do quite well for themselves financially and make contributions to our society that are greatly needed.

    Talk with higher education professionals today (even in many of our top universities) and they will communicate their concern about the lack of educational preparedness of many entering freshman. And the growing dependence on remedial coursework to be prepared for success in a university setting. Implementation of what Obama is recommending will only deepen this problem. Everyone should not go to college. Although it would be nice if everyone who graduates from high school or receives a GED had the option of going to college if they choose to.

    March 1, 2012 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  6. Rudy NYC

    Truth wrote:

    When leftists and lefist controlled unions took over the education system in this country.
    -----------–
    I'm going to give you a mulligan. Santorum is criticizing and painting *all educational institutions* with a broad brush. That would include instutions like Notre Dame, St. Johns, and every other Catholic university in this country. I'm surprised that the Bishops haven't come down on him for his words and excommunicated him.

    March 1, 2012 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  7. ozzie

    Ricky is dis-connescted from the real life experiences of most people on the planet. He seems to have so many inner conflicts that he needs to resolve. I pray fro him. As a Catholic and a Pennsyvanian, I find Sen. Santorum embarrassing.

    March 1, 2012 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  8. yogi

    @ Truth.
    Delusional and angry describe most of your posts. You say : "when I see Romney and others polling ahead of Obama"....that is dreaming because reality shows a very different picture in the present polls.
    Obama 2012, and we can thank God for that.

    March 1, 2012 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  9. Sniffit

    "Republicans prefer their supporters to be as dumb as possible"

    I think it's more along of the lines of people needing to be as dumb as possible in the first place to even support them haha

    March 1, 2012 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  10. Fair + Balanced

    Joe: Santorum is just Santorum. Look it up. Don't waste time on his dribble. He will probably be Willard Romney's VP candidtae and their slogan can be "Man on Dog on car Rooftop."

    March 1, 2012 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  11. jack

    Even Joe Biden has a higher IQ than Santorum, 110-99

    March 1, 2012 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  12. David A.

    While we continue to waste our time on culture wars, arguing over the merits of a college education, China, India, and other countries continue to send the students to our universities for first-rate educations in Computer Science, Engineering, Chemistry, and Physics. Apparently they don't have any problem with this snobbery, and their economies will soon be leaving ours behind as a result.

    March 1, 2012 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  13. Tom

    I listened to Santorum introduce his family after the Michigan primary and how proud he was of their scholastic accomplishments. It was sickening to listen to his praise of his own family and reflect back on his calling President Obama a snob for urging all Americans to go to college.

    March 1, 2012 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  14. GrogInOhio

    Santorum isn't really opposed to higher education. He's just blindly opposed to anything President Obama is in favor of. Unfortunately, Santorum is an accurate reflection of the Republican Party.

    March 1, 2012 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  15. open400

    Obama never said everyone should go to college, but rather everyone that is qualified should be able to find financing to go. Obama has on numerous occasions praised our troops- many of which are not college graduates. Obama is not a snob, but an example of American exceptionallism. Obama was born in Hawaii(not a great political state like Texas, California and New York) and rose though the ranks on his own abilities. Political access to office based on name was not handed to Obama like it was to Bushes or the Kennedys. It seems like to me the GOP is becoming a party of out of touch mean-spirited white guys.

    March 1, 2012 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  16. yogi

    @ The Real Tom Paine.
    Enjoy reading your posts, intelligent and always spot-on!

    March 1, 2012 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  17. Aaron

    Aren't these false dichotomies? Each side accuses the other of positions they really don't hold. I think most agree that we need a greater level of technical training for more people in this country. We need college freshmen who are better prepared. And we need degrees that are rigorous and still relevant. It gets tiring to see political differences here. We need to start to agree on a few things.

    March 1, 2012 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  18. Lizzie

    Sniffit: just look at all those smart people who voted for this President, most are still waiting for him to pay their mortgage and credit card bills.

    March 1, 2012 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  19. Claudia, Phoenix, AZ

    Voting Republican is just like voting again for that "do nothing Congress" that was voted in and they have the lowest ratings of any Congress in history.

    March 1, 2012 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  20. Andrew

    When a man has to resort to name calling, degrading comments, insults and flagrant lies..it's time to stop calling him a man. He is a child who has no concept of civility, manors and plain old respect for anything. Santorum needs to grow up.
    He really is a monster deep down.

    March 1, 2012 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  21. Brian K

    Any Republican who wants Obama to win another four years should support Santorum. I'm not saying the President couldn't beat Romney or the others, but Santorum's views are so out of whack, there's no way he could win a general election, and God help us if if he were to win.

    March 1, 2012 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  22. Florida Joe

    blake

    Does anyone take Biden seriously?

    *********************************************************
    Yes especially on this topic. What he is saying is that EVERYONE should have the chance to go to College IF THEY WANT TO..........Sanatorium is just trying to divide this country as are ALL the Republicans.........If anyone, Sanatoium is the SNOB

    March 1, 2012 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  23. Colgate

    Rick Santorum–2012 Poster Child for GOP Hypocrisy

    March 1, 2012 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  24. UncleM

    LIke all relgious fanatics, Santorum wants to keep the masses ignorant. Knowledge and critical thinking are the enemy of relgion.

    March 1, 2012 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  25. UncleM

    Knowledge and critical thinking are the enemy of religion.

    March 1, 2012 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10