Biden: House Republicans "Neanderthals"
September 13th, 2013
09:34 AM ET
10 months ago

Biden: House Republicans "Neanderthals"

Washington (CNN) - Touting the success of the Violence Against Women Act, Vice President Joe Biden described those in Congress who slowed the renewal of the measure as a "Neanderthal crowd."

"I'm going to say something outrageous," Biden said at an event at the vice president's residence in Washington Thursday night to celebrate the 19th anniversary of act, which is designed to protect women from domestic violence.

Biden, who took a leading role in the mid-1990's in drafting the legislation when he was a senator from Delaware, said "surprisingly last year we ran into this sort of Neanderthal crowd," to laughter, adding that "I'm serious, I mean, when you think about it, did you ever think we'd be fighting over 17 years, 18 years later? To reauthorize this."

The act (VAWA) had been swiftly reauthorized in previous years, but House Republicans in the last Congress opposed portions of the Senate reauthorization bill and held up the measure for a year. One of the things they opposed was a part of the bill that would have expanded access to certain visas for non-citizens who were victims of domestic violence.

After last year's election defeats, where the GOP's hopes of recapturing the White House and the Senate were damaged in part by a weak showing with female voters, House Republicans in this year's new Congress supported the reauthorization, after the portion of the measure calling for expanded visa access was dropped.

Biden said having more women in the Senate helped overcome GOP opposition, saying "it makes a difference whether there is women in the Senate," to applause from those in the audience. "No, no, it does. It does man. The bigger the number the better our chances. Because they go and look all the rest of those guys in the eye and say, 'Look. This is important to me'."

The vice president's comments come just days before he heads to Iowa Sunday to headline Sen. Tom Harkin's steak fry, a major annual Democratic party gathering which has a rich history of attracting presidential hopefuls. Biden is considering whether he'll make a third run for the Democratic presidential nomination. He launched unsuccessful bids in 1988 and 2008.

Joe Biden courts presidential speculation with Iowa trip

In his comments Thursday evening, the vice president discussed his getting ahead of President Barack Obama in May of last year in supporting same-sex marriage.

As Biden announced federal grants to the first ever LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) victim services institute, he said "I promise I will end this in a second but to make sure victims get services regardless of their sexual orientation. And that was even before I went off script. Certain things I promised I wasn't going to keep my mouth closed on, OK? So I make no apologies for jumping ahead on the issue of uh, um, marriage. But think about it, for the first time we said, hey wait a minute now, you know, this is a violation of the law. You know these were major strides."


Filed under: 2016 • Joe Biden
soundoff (316 Responses)
  1. Rudy NYC

    I strongly disagree with the name calling. Leave that sort of descent into disrespect with the right wing, where it belongs.

    September 13, 2013 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  2. Data Driven

    I guess this is a "Joe Biden Might Be Running For President" article.

    In any case, he's right: the reason Republicans slowed authorization for VAWA last year? "a part of the bill that would have expanded access to certain visas for non-citizens who were victims of domestic violence."

    What a bunch of hooey. If Republicans don't want to be called Neanderthals, they should probably stop finding stupid reasons to block laws like VAWA, using terms like "forcible" rape, asserting rape almost never results in pregnancies, etc. You've made your bed, Congressional Republicans - now go take a nap in it.

    September 13, 2013 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  3. Fair is Fair

    "I'm going to say something outrageous," Biden said
    --------
    Go ahead, Joe. We're used to it.

    September 13, 2013 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  4. Tom

    I think it's appalling that Biden could be so disrespectful to Neanderthals.

    September 13, 2013 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  5. Jules

    Papa Joe Biden was being kind to the GOP. I actually feel sorry for the GOP moderates having to deal with the clown section, but then I remember that they don't have the guts to stand up to them and then I don't feel so sorry.

    September 13, 2013 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  6. sonny chapman

    You nailed it Uncle Joe. It's the same bunch that swoon over tough talking President's who do stupid things. The same bunch whose Manhood is challenged if they can't have 30 shot clips for their Ar-15 while they pretend they're in the Military while blasting away at the rifle range.

    September 13, 2013 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  7. What's in that tea anyway?

    There really is no explanation for these cretins in the GOP/Tea Party.....they are hateful, greedy, ignorant, racist, disrespectful, bitter, disbelieving losers unwilling to compromise, hypocritical, vapid, irrational, incapable of doing anything for this country.....aside from that They're Great!

    September 13, 2013 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  8. What's in that tea anyway?

    @Fair,

    Hang in there....You and the Party of "Duh" have the rest of this generation to even be mentioned...after that, its the party of Whigs (here you come) LOL...and it couldn't happen to a more deserving party. Enjoy irrelevance!

    September 13, 2013 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  9. tom l

    Yep. They really do want to work with repubs. What a great way to reach across the aisle.

    September 13, 2013 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  10. Name jk. Sfl. GOP conservatives,the garbage of America.

    You got that right joe we are going to kick them all out in the 2014 midterms as a reward for their total incompetence and obstruction. If its good for you and the rest of America , the GOP teaparty,excuse me, libertarians, the teaparty idiots new name now that everybody hates the teaparty clowns is against it!!!

    September 13, 2013 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  11. What's in that tea anyway?

    @Fair is Fair

    "I'm going to say something outrageous," Biden said
    --–
    Go ahead, Joe. We're used to it.

    ------–
    Ok...Fair....Are you some insecure man that some how feels that expanding visas for women at risk of violence is a bad thing...or some stepford wife that believes men should dominate because you are merely an inanimate object that deserves no consideration or respect. (pssst).....either one is pretty pathetic, considering you accept your party as bunch of neanderthals and "used to it". Sorry I don't get the alure of the stupidity in the GOP/Tea troll party

    September 13, 2013 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  12. tom l

    @Data
    So when Bush was pres Reid called him a loser. When Bush was pres Pelosi called him a liar and a total failure. When Bush was pres Al Gore accused him of betraying our country. How is that any different?

    I know you are a thoughtful and reasonable person who actually listens to non-dem's point of view so I would be curious to get your reaction. With your response, I don't think you should try to justify what they said because then I will have to justify the p.o.v.'s of the repubs which I have no desire to do. :) Just try to take it from the perspective of being the party that is not in power. Remember that you never heard Bush complain or whine about the opposition either. I really think the biggest difference is that the dems just have really thin skin and can't take the heat.

    On one final note, I will agree that when McConnell said his goal was to make Obama a one-term president that it was a dumb thing to say (but certainly no different an opinion from Reid when Bush was president – he just didn't say it)

    Hope San Diego is treating you well....

    September 13, 2013 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  13. Lynda/Minnesota

    Jules: Papa Joe Biden was being kind to the GOP. I actually feel sorry for the GOP moderates having to deal with the clown section, but then I remember that they don't have the guts to stand up to them and then I don't feel so sorry.

    God knows I've tried Jules.

    September 13, 2013 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  14. Data Driven

    @Rudy NYC,

    "I strongly disagree with the name calling"

    I usually agree, but the anti-woman legislation and attitudes of the current incarnation of the GOP has gone beyond reasoned opposition, I think. We can't get even minor job projects passed in Congress because these people keep attaching ludicrous anti-abortion riders into the bills. There just seems to be a deep-seated contempt towards women by the GOP.

    "Neanderthal" seems like an okay response to "forcible rape" to me. Sometimes a spade is a spade.

    September 13, 2013 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  15. M.A.P.

    Hillary 16 is all i have to say.

    September 13, 2013 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  16. Rick McDaniel

    Democrats........all of the party.......are subversives.

    Better to have people who are not necessarily the most up to date........than to have subversives who seek to undermine the country,

    September 13, 2013 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  17. suzisaul

    OMG CNN!! You KNOW why they don't want to sign onto the bill that you have in your hand. There is something in there that doesn't belong; something never before seen in this or any other bill. It has to do with allowing native americans to try americans in their own courts, instead of what's supposed to happen...through our normal justice system with a jury of peers, and NOT through tribal court system! Stop acting like it's a war on women and illegals!!! For you idiot democrats calling the GOP names for standing up for the rights of your sons, brothers, husbands, uncles, etc....you are STUPID SHEEP who don't know how to think for yourselves!!!!!

    September 13, 2013 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  18. Rudy NYC

    tom l

    Yep. They really do want to work with repubs. What a great way to reach across the aisle.
    --------------------------–
    Did not the Republicans sit down at that nationally televised "health care reform summit", moderated by Pres. Obama, back when and basically say this, "Our way, or the highway." The Republicans were offered compromise, and they turned it down.

    Are not these the same Republicans still saying, "Our way, or the highway."? When they deliver their ultimatums such as threatening to shut down the government, threatening to default on our bills, are they compromising? Didn't one Tea Party member from Texas, Gohmert(?), stand up and declare that his idea of compromise is the other side bending to his will or something like that?

    September 13, 2013 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  19. Rudy NYC

    tom l

    @Data
    So when Bush was pres Reid called him a loser. When Bush was pres Pelosi called him a liar and a total failure. When Bush was pres Al Gore accused him of betraying our country. How is that any different
    ---------------
    Gee, I see that you're revisiting the same lie that someone else used to push around here. When Bush was called a liar, it's because the description fit. He had campaigned in Nevada in 2004, promising that Yucca Mountain would not become the nation's nuclear waste dump. Within days of winning Nevada and the election, Bush reneged on his promise by declaring that Yucca Mountain would be the nation's nuclear waste dump. What Reid and Pelosi said about Bush, was in fact the truth. He had blantantly lied to the people of Nevada for personal, political gain.

    September 13, 2013 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  20. Data Driven

    @tom l,

    " When Bush was pres Al Gore accused him of betraying our country"

    Gore was a private citizen; Corker is not. Corker is a public servant. However, I agree about Pelosi. As a member of the House, she shouldn't have called the President a liar.

    But beware of false equivalence. Obama has been shown disrespect to an extent that I've never seen in my 4 decades on this earth. When Congress is not interrupting his speech by shouting to him that he's a liar, they're slyly wondering if he's even an American citizen or questioning his manhood. Bill Clinton wasn't treated to this utter contempt even after Lewinsky. LIBERALS who were private citizens may have called Bush names on the Internet all day, but I find it interesting that you can only cite 1 instance of a public servant calling Bush a name during his terms. I can cite half a dozen instances toward Obama just this week. The only logical explanation for all this is that Obama is black. America was ready to ELECT a black President, but wasn't ready to be governed by one. The agita about his Presidency has been depressing to watch.

    San Diego is more beautiful this morning than Beyonce in a diaphanous gown; thanks for asking. :)

    September 13, 2013 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  21. Al

    Neanderthals everywhere are insulted.

    September 13, 2013 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  22. Gunderson

    Aw, Humm, uh, Well,
    Old Gunderson know Biden somewhat allright VP but Joe No make very good Milkman. All you get out of Joe is a Lotta Bull.

    September 13, 2013 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  23. Eric

    I would agree that the GOPs positions and platforms are from the good ole days and not at all what's best for America. Its not 1950, its 2013.

    September 13, 2013 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  24. Al-NY,NY

    Rick McDaniel

    Democrats........all of the party.......are subversives.

    Better to have people who are not necessarily the most up to date........than to have subversives who seek to undermine the country,
    ------------–

    subversives??? Sounds like your buddy Ted (Joe McCarthy Cruz) speaking.....he of the "we need 100 Jesse Helms'" comment. Where's Trickey Dicky? He/Issa/Cruz can convene the Unamerican Activities Investigations again.

    September 13, 2013 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  25. Rudy NYC

    Data Driven

    @tom l,

    " When Bush was pres Al Gore accused him of betraying our country"

    Gore was a private citizen; Corker is not. Corker is a public servant. However, I agree about Pelosi. As a member of the House, she shouldn't have called the President a liar.
    ----------------
    Sorry, but I disagree. While it is bad form to start calling one another names, Pres. Bush earned the title of liar. See above.

    September 13, 2013 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13