April 12th, 2012
01:45 PM ET
2 years ago

Biden slams Romney's tax plan in New Hampshire speech

Exeter, New Hampshire (CNN) – Vice President Joe Biden's campaign attacks on Mitt Romney continued Thursday in the battleground of New Hampshire, a state Biden and President Barack Obama won in 2008 but where Romney made significant inroads during the GOP primary in January.

In a campaign speech in Exeter – a symbolic choice since Exeter claims to be the town where the Republican Party was founded – Biden slammed Romney, the former Massachusetts governor and all but certain Republican presidential nominee, as favoring tax breaks for the wealthy at the cost of important national investments.

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"Just look at what Governor Romney wants to do," Biden said to a crowd of 400 supporters in Exeter's Town Hall.

Introduced by Nashua resident and former school bus driver Deidre Reynolds, Biden used Reynold's story to emphasize the differences with Romney.

"The Bush tax cuts for the wealthy, the ones that were intended to expire, the ones that will expire this December - he wants to extend them," Biden said.

During this fourth visit to New Hampshire in the last five months, Biden repeatedly spoke about the literal and metaphorical cost of the tax cuts totals, which he said would total a trillion dollars.

The vice president called Romney "out of touch" because he wants to "double down on tax cuts for the wealthy" at the expense of the middle class, asking the audience, "how many of you have Swiss bank accounts?"

The focus on the opposing tax plans is part of a larger effort by Obama's campaign to push the so-called "Buffett Rule," which would mandate Americans earning more than $1 million per year pay a 30% tax rate – higher than most millionaires pay now, since they generally derive much of their income from investments, which are taxed at 15%.

The effort to push the rule – named for billionaire Warren Buffett – began in earnest this week with a White House address by Obama that featured four millionaires who brought along their secretaries, a symbol of the higher tax rate the lower-paid assistants sometimes pay.

Biden compared the proposed Buffett Rule to a plan advocated by his GOP rival.

"The Buffett Rule says that multi-millionaires should pay at least the same percentage of their income in taxes as middle-class families do," Biden said. "The Romney Rule says the very wealthy should keep the tax cuts and loopholes they have, and get an additional, new tax cut every year that is worth more than what the average middle class family makes in an entire year."

That system, Biden stressed, isn't fair.

"It's not the American way. We're not supposed to have a system that's rigged. We're not supposed to have a system with one set of rules for the wealthy and one set of rules for everyone else," the vice president said.

He also said wealthy people know they should be doing more.

"I often point out wealthy people are just as patriotic as poor people," he said. "They are just as patriotic as middle class people. And I think they know they should be doing more."

At one point, when a baby started crying during his critique of Romney's plan, Biden quickly quipped, "I don't blame the baby for crying," which was met with applause from the audience.

"That's one smart baby!" Biden exclaimed.

Romney's campaign, which spent substantial resources to win the Granite State's first-in-the-nation GOP primary in January, held a conference call Thursday ahead of Biden's visit featuring prominent Romney supporters, including former New Hampshire governor John Sununu.

"Welcome to New Hampshire Joe Biden," Sununu said on the call. "It's a shame you don't know how to talk about jobs that America needs and it's a shame you haven't been able to create the jobs that America needs. We're still at 8% after 38 months of staying there. It's a travesty the Obama administration has been unable to do anything to inspire investment that creates jobs in this economy."

Sununu, along with Romney spokesman Ryan Williams, were also present at the speech to speak with voters and members of the media. A Romney campaign bus drove past three times as Biden was speaking.

"We will be there to discuss the Obama Administration's abysmal economic policies and failed fiscal agenda," Williams said.

Obama won New Hampshire in the 2008 general election by a ten point margin, besting Sen. John McCain 54%-44%, but Republicans made major gains there in the 2010 midterm elections and the state is considered up for grabs in November's presidential contest.

A WMUR Granite State Poll conducted in February showed President Obama with a 51% approval rating.

Also see:

Obama ahead in New Jersey, even with Christie on ticket

Florida Rep labels congressional Democrats as Communists

Barbour won't formally endorse Romney, but offers advice


Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • New Hampshire • Vice President Biden
soundoff (16 Responses)
  1. SUBS 4 VOTES

    Romney wants to be President so he can give himself an even bigger tax break than he's currently receiving. Tax evasion is unAmerican and Willard should be ashamed of himself. That alone should disqualify him to be President. Just exactly how many tax havens does Willard have???

    April 12, 2012 08:17 am at 8:17 am |
  2. ST

    Go VP Biden and give Romney the medicine he needs. We trust you and know that you never let anyone play with peoples mind!

    April 12, 2012 08:20 am at 8:20 am |
  3. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Mittens has pretty much promised an additional safety net for billionaires, big oil, Wall Street, big banks, etc. He is more of a Bush lite, than a leader of all people.

    April 12, 2012 08:24 am at 8:24 am |
  4. king

    Lesson, history have proven twice, that when the rich get richer, and the spenders money is taken away its a recipe for disaster. Look at the great depression and the great recession. Middle class spenders is who drives the economy. The more middle class spenders we have the more jobs well get. Since the war on labor unions, the middle class is volerable, and the country have been sliding.

    April 12, 2012 08:32 am at 8:32 am |
  5. Steve, New York City

    What is Romney's tax plan? Everyone making over $1 million should pay just 5% (and keep everyone else's rate the same)? Facetious comments aside, Romney's big problem is that many people believe that he doesn't care about people who aren't rich. He's a typical, spoiled private school kid.

    April 12, 2012 08:50 am at 8:50 am |
  6. Jerry

    Well, what else can you expect from this Mr. Obama butt kisser?! My fellow Democrats are getting really desperate. Maybe, just maybe if you stop all your lying, just maybe the situation will change.

    Any doubts? Simply read the latest articles on the Mr. Obama sponsored attack on Mrs. Ann Romney!!! Jealousy and envy know no bounds!!!

    April 12, 2012 09:06 am at 9:06 am |
  7. Bill Fitzgerald

    Go to it Joe. Open your mouth in every state. You are so full of nothing to say and I love The Romney response that you and obama can discuss your failed polices more readily. Thank you.

    April 12, 2012 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  8. American

    Good for VP Biden. The majority of Americans supports a balanced approach from President Obama, which includes shared responsibility in fiscal policy.

    Contrastingly, Romney & Ryan are pushing an irresponsible scheme that would increase deficits with more disproportionate tax cuts for the rich off the backs of middle-class Americans & privatizing seniors' Medicare. It's not right.

    April 12, 2012 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  9. Ray E. (Georgia)

    TAXES. There's the problem. What are we going to do with those Taxes. We can't allow those job providers to have lower taxes. They will just hire more people. Then people will have to work! We can't have that. People need help! Where will we get all the money to give away. Yes, taxes. that is the problem.

    April 12, 2012 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  10. gt

    ole joe.... please just be quite....your a joke and dont you know people laugh at you not with you....

    April 12, 2012 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  11. Rudy NYC

    It is time to end the bad science known as the Bush Tax Cuts, most especially the cuts he made to the capital gains rates and the new loopholes that were added. Because the cuts would turn a surplus into a deficit, Pres. Bush himself promised the American people on national televison from the Oval Office that they would only be temporary.

    The promise of economic growth was only realized by those who received the cuts. The middle class saw no growth in their incomes. The "job creators" and venture capitalists, like Mitt Romney, invested their money overseas, and permanently sent American manufacturing jobs out of the country.

    My presidential debate question for Mitt Romney would be this. "You released a tax return with a net rate of roughly 14%. What would you project your net to be under your Romney/Ryan plan tax cuts?"

    April 12, 2012 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  12. Dave

    When the government is currently borrowing .40 on every dollar, I believe we need a new spending policy. Romney 2012!

    April 12, 2012 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  13. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    I wouldn't mind the wealthy paying less in the way of taxes if they did something to help those that don't have the money. Where is their support for food pantries and job training centers among the more practical things? I think that if they all get together and have a country wide private low cost non-profit health insurance for the poor/low income people, then that would help a lot. It would take only a million or two from people as wealthy as Romney to do that. That is a great investment in the country.

    April 12, 2012 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  14. Irma in North Carolina

    Old Mitt needs to be brought down on his knees where he cant never get up.

    April 12, 2012 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  15. The REAL Truth.. (not the imposter)

    Wow.. I guess Truth, Fair and Four all took the day off.. Perhaps they have yet to get out of bed ?

    April 12, 2012 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  16. sal

    Biden is by far the least qualified VP we've ever had. Who would listen to him??
    His talks are meaningless.

    April 12, 2012 10:17 am at 10:17 am |