Democratic sources: Obama aides annoyed with Biden
May 10th, 2012
11:25 AM ET
2 years ago

Democratic sources: Obama aides annoyed with Biden

Washington (CNN) - Multiple top Democrats said Thursday the president's senior aides are deeply annoyed with Vice President Joe Biden for forcing the conversation on same-sex marriage.

One source said Biden has, in the past, counseled the president against announcing support for same-sex marriage - making the circumstances that much more frustrating. Although other sources said they have not heard Biden make that point in recent years.

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Biden made comments supporting such unions during an appearance on NBC's "Meet the Press" that aired Sunday, seemingly forcing the issue to the forefront of public debate.

Another source said the recent events gave renewed life to old jokes and flippant remarks like, "Hello? Does he know this is the Obama presidency not the Biden presidency?"

None of these sources said they believed it would create a lasting rift between the West Wing and the vice president's office – because Biden has gone off script before and will do it again.

The president's team said they were aware of the risk when they tapped Biden for the ticket. One source added that the president has a close personal relationship with the former senator and that trumps his advisers' frustrations. But there is a great deal of interest in keeping the vice president "on script."

These top Democrats said they are not concerned that Biden will "get credit" for the same-sex marriage announcement. They said history will show it's the president who did this and they believe most people thought the president already supported same-sex marriage.

Sources also said the vice president feels bad about putting the president in a tough position.

As evidence he is not in the dog house, Biden hosted a student loan event at the White House Thursday and will make a two-day campaign swing in Ohio next week.


Filed under: 2012 • Joe Biden • President Obama • Same-sex marriage
soundoff (115 Responses)
  1. Sniffit

    "This is all a bunch of crap, they only brought this up because of North Carolina's amendment vote on Tuesday. He's politicizing yet another incident to push focus off his failed presidency."

    Right. Because NC's right wing extremists "bringing it up" as an amendment to their state constitution wasn't "politicizing" it in the first place. Y.A.W.N.

    May 10, 2012 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  2. Cheryl Jefferies

    Annoyed, my foot! He was only following Obama's orders. This was planned and planned a long time ago. How idiotic!

    May 10, 2012 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  3. TheAlaskaCurmudgeon

    I thought pretty much everyone was annoyed with Biden pretty much all of the time. Why would it make news now?

    May 10, 2012 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  4. Snooze70

    Biden is just fine. He speaks his mind honestly. Very refreshing in tese times. I'd like to see him run for President in 2016.

    May 10, 2012 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  5. Joel Miller

    Doesn't really matter why or how President Obama came to publicly change his mind. The point is he did it and deserves credit for it.

    May 10, 2012 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  6. getoverit

    News flash! Most people annoyed with Joe "Dan Quayle" biden.

    May 10, 2012 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  7. Vik T0r

    Biden speaks out for whats right... oh the humanity!

    May 10, 2012 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  8. caeser

    Having Biden "slip" was engineered so that Obama could take advantage of Romney's flip-flop image by showcasing
    a solid stance on a controversial civil rights issue and do it in an impromptu manner.

    May 10, 2012 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  9. Mary

    Does not matter how it happened. Obama had the courage to come out and say what he thought and give both of them credit for it.

    May 10, 2012 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  10. Boo Boo

    Who cares what Brain Dead Biden thinks. Everybody knows he is a plagerist, its not like anybody around the world pays any attention to him. Just like his boss he follows by example.

    May 10, 2012 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  11. tor5

    Politically, maybe it wasn’t the best way or timing for this announcement. But good for Biden for going “off script” once in a while. How refreshing when a politician has a moment of genuine authenticity. And good for both Biden and Obama for standing up for a simple principle of legal equality.

    May 10, 2012 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  12. Expresss

    How is this news? The Dems are annoyed with everything, even themselves..

    May 10, 2012 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  13. dreucalypt

    If President Obama was going to announce it next week anyway on The View I can't see that Biden's remarks really made much difference.

    May 10, 2012 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  14. Ron in California

    It's all political theater..it's all about the money.

    May 10, 2012 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  15. Ramana7

    Biden has been known for the loose mouth issue. That's nothing new. But if you are going to speak out, speak with honesty and gusto. He does that. I respect that. It will likely hurt Obama in some ways, but sometimes standing up for the right thing is subject to all kinds of challenges.

    I've long wished that Obama would find a way to make a bridge with Paul. Call me crazy, but that movement is in the wrong party at the moment. Bring it to the right party. I can't help but feel if you can clean up Paul's racial issues (and teaming with Obama could go a long way toward that) the rest of what he's talking about is at least worth a serious discussion in the US.

    I don't know how I feel about his whole economics approach, changing our standard, etc. But it's worth the conversation. As to Libertarian ideals, overall they fit perfectly into the Democratic view in my opinion. That's the kind of reduction in government that sparks my interest. Not deregulating wall-street and cutting taxes on the rich so they can have another run at destroying the country in the name of greed. That's Romney and it's old and tired GOP BS.

    Get Uncle sam out of my house, out of my personal life, allow personal freedoms. Stop trying to police the world, stop sending people to wars for oil, etc. I'm all for that.

    Biden has paid his dues and overall has not been a lump and I mean him no disrespect. He's earned my respect and I tip the hat. I would put him to other tasks, a cabinet member, I don't know. He deserves a good position. I'm not sure the mouth issue is good for President or Secretary of State, but there has to be something he's perfect for.

    Hilary needs to prepare to run in 2016.

    May 10, 2012 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  16. Not All Docs Play Golf

    As a supporter of the President, I too feel like Biden has become our Dan Quayle. Biden is smart, has a lot of important foreign affairs experience, but he just too ofter speaks before he thinks. That is just the opposite of Obama, who seems to choose his words carefully and put a lot of thought into how he phrases things during interviews. Come on, Joe, rise to who you really can be.

    May 10, 2012 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  17. Liz

    Annoyed? GMAB, Obama is worried about losing, it has nothing to do with Biden. Biden is the only honest one there.

    May 10, 2012 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  18. Suvali

    This President would be a lot better off without his close aides. All they worry about is the campaign image and who will approve or disapprove of the Priesndent, what he says and what he does. In my opinion, this nonsense has held the President back time and time again. We did not elect him so people would love him. We elected him so he would do the right thing for the country. He did it yesterday and if it took Joe Biden finally speaking up first then God bless Joe Biden. We could do with less influence from the silly aides and more from some experienced people like Biden.

    May 10, 2012 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  19. Frank

    This was very coordinated: first Biden, then Arne Duncan, then the President. Very smart indeed-congratulations all around. Romney now seems even more backward-looking, along with the rest of the GOP.

    May 10, 2012 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  20. Iconoclast

    I agree with some of the comments here as to whether it truly was a "slip up". I suspect things were far more choreographed than we are led to believe, but no matter, he was speaking honestly and in no way did he imply he was speaking for the government in any fashion. At the very least Obama was shrewed to take advantage of the moment and create another very distinct difference between him and the conservative platform. I look forward to a lot more bold moves on his part and hopefully start to move this country, dare I say it, "forward".

    May 10, 2012 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  21. mm

    He spoke honestly and not for the administration, and made that clear during the interview.
    Whether you are in favor of or not, good for him and the the prez for standing up and speaking out!

    May 10, 2012 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  22. Keeping it Real

    Biden. The number one reason why I question the President's decision making process. He's an albatross around Obama's neck along with the health care mandates.

    May 10, 2012 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  23. stan

    This was clearly a political move. Although Aftrican Americans appear in polls to be the largest group that is against gay marriage, the Obama administration has decided that he will get 95% of the black vote no matter what his stance on gay marriage. On the other hand, liberal and moderate whites are are heavily in favor of gay marriage and this announcement boltsers his support among these voters. So it was a win-win political decision for Obama to make this announcment. I am not up on the numbers of support among hispanics and other groups, for gay marriage.

    May 10, 2012 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  24. Kevin

    Hey Snooze70, Biden 2016?? Are you out of your mind?!

    May 10, 2012 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  25. Phillco

    What does Biden expressing his opinion have to do with Obamas beliefs. Biden did nothing wrong. I praise Obama for speaking up about his opinion too.

    May 10, 2012 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
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