September 9th, 2008
04:44 PM ET
14 years ago

McCain camp says Biden 'sunk to a new low'

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Was Biden referencing Palin in his comments about stem cell research?"](CNN) - John McCain's campaign hit back hard at Joe Biden Tuesday after the Democratic VP candidate appeared to suggest Republicans who do not support stem cell research - like GOP VP candidate Sarah Palin - are lacking in their support of children with disabilities.

“Barack Obama’s running mate sunk to a new low today launching an offensive debate over who cares more about special needs children," McCain-Palin spokesman Ben Porritt said. "Playing politics with this issue is disturbing and indicative of a desperate campaign."

The sharp response, indicative of the increasingly heated rhetoric from both presidential campaigns as the election enters the final stretch, came shortly after Biden said advocates for people with disabilities should support stem cell research.

Biden did not mention Palin - the mother of a baby with Down syndrome, and someone who has said she will be a “friend and advocate in the White House" to parents of children with disabilities - but seemed to direct a question to her.

Election Center: Where the candidates stand on stem cell research

“I hear all this talk about how the Republicans are going to work in dealing with parents who have both the joy…and the difficulty of raising a child who has a developmental disability, who were born with a birth defect,” he said. “Well, guess what folks? If you care about it, why don't you support stem cell research?”

Biden spokesman David Wade insisted Tuesday the Delaware senator's comments were not directed at Palin.

"This is a clash of policies, not a clash of personalities," Wade said. "We've heard not a dime's worth of difference between the McCain-Palin ticket and the Bush Administration on medical breakthroughs that millions of parents and doctors believe could save lives and transform the quality of life for countless Americans."

Filed under: Joe Biden • Sarah Palin
soundoff (315 Responses)
  1. Patty

    This mother of a child who had a stroke at age 19, (6 1/2 years ago) through no fault of his own, would like to know how Ms. Palin is going to be an advocate for my son. Rhetoric like this gets nowhere. I want a proven Democrat who I know supports my cause and the millions of others who suffer every day. If you have a disability, know someone with a disability for whom embryonic stem cell research may help, Please, Please, Please, vote for Obama/Biden. Do not trust the Republicans who have delivered nothing to us over the past 8 years.

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  2. Kate

    His comments are right on mark.

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  3. Count VA 2008 ... were making it Officially BLUE

    KEEP BITING …………. BIDEN…….. put them on the DEFENSE!! BIDEN…………………….

    this not joke AMERICA not a joke................ this is not about personalities,,,

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  4. FL Dem

    The choice is simple: Do you or do you not support stem cell research. As a research biologist working in the University system I am fully aware of the potential benefits of this research and the potential of saving millions of lives one day. These cures and vaccinations will happen much faster using stem cell research.

    Biden is correct: if you do not support stem cell research then you are not fully supporting the advancement of medicine to develop cures and vaccinations.

    It is that simple!

    Unfortunately republicans claim they want less govt regulation however, they are certainly ready to support any regulation that THEY believe disagrees with their religious beliefs. KEEP RELIGION OUT OF POLITICS YOU STUPID REPUBLICANS

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  5. Anderson Dallas Texas Obama 08

    Yeah for Joe Biden I am a mother of 1 Living and 1Deceased , My 2nd child died of SIDS and at the time there were no cure for it .. I went to every meeting I could to try to understand WHY a health baby just dies in its sleep for no reason .. I was devasted and wanted to know more the same year my son died the formula was taken off the shelf for research to see if it was in the formula (beacause that year lots of babies were dying from SIDS(Sudden Infant Death Syndrome)... So to say this I Know as a mother that if there were something that I could do in her case to have stem cell research I would do it in a heart beat .....Obama/Biden 08

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  6. Michael Dunn

    Sorry McCain but the truth hurts. If you know that stem cell research could provide cures and you oppose it...well sorry but I think Biden is right on the money! Science has had no greater enemy in the White House than George Bush and now McCain/Palin promise to be equal to the task possibly even out doing Bush in this category.

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  7. Jeremy

    It is important we know the TRUTH about this self declared Lipstick Pitbull. She seems to have so much behind her! Bridge to no-where lies, Ebay Jet lies,her fanatical faith,Earmarks lobbyist lies....I was suprised to know she got over $200m in earmarks this year. SHE IS FOR IT BEFORE SHE IS AGAINST IT! Am Republican so do other Texans eager to know who she is. Let us know the truth before we pludge our beloved country into more trouble.

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  8. L.A.

    All I'm going to say is you GOP people should talk. After the depths your VP nominee has sunk to disparage Barack Obama's work with building up his community you're going to actual fix your mouth to say that Joe Biden sunk to an new low? You people make me sick. It's absolutely disgusting how badly you lie and twist things around. You couldn't pay me to vote Republican. Not in this day and age. I'd rather throw away my vote.

    And shame on you, CNN, for encouraging that Biden's comments were directed at Palin. Both McCain and Palin have stated they want to be a friend to parents raising special needs children. That comment from Biden, in my opinin WAS NOT an attack on anyone with or dealing with special needs children. Especially, not on Sarah Palin. Honestly, the issue onthe table was stem research. How could he get around talking about children with special needs? And how does that direct his comments towards Sarah Palin? Is she the ONLY person with a special needs child?

    Stop being whiney little babies, GOP. And for the love of God stop trying to protect your precious little pitbull. If she's so big and bad let her loose. Don't hide her like you've been doing.

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  9. Ontaya

    Way to go Biden hit hard. I love how the Republican's are known for being so nasty but feel no one should ever be nasty or question them. Sickening!

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  10. Brian G, Sugar Land, TX

    Now you know darn well the Republicans don't believe in science. It gets in the way of all lthose creationist fables.

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  11. Just Sayin...

    Screw anything GOP says...they don't deserve to open their mouth. There a disgusting excuse for a political party...more like a rich kid club for ignorant stupid if only Obama could talk like that...

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  12. Advocate

    Since when does every comment have to be about Palin? When did the election become about her? There are several thousand forms of developmental disabilities. There are millions of families affected by this. Stem cell research is not a new topic and was a hot button issue during the last campaign. Science and technology have changed since then and now more questions are raised.
    You can't complian that there's no substantive discussion on the issues, then pick and choose which ones are agreeable to you. As someone who has worked with children with disabilities and their families for the past 20 years, this is an important issue. These families have been ignored and left out on a limb- especially during the last eight years.

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  13. Vonne

    It amazes me how the Republicans have no issue with saying harsh things about Senator Obama and whoever else they view as a threat. But when the punches come back at them they want to play the victim. I say they need to be called out on their hypocritical behavior. If you are really in support of children with special needs then support the policy that will give them a chance at a healthy life.

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  14. Bob McCranie

    He's just saying the truth. People with special needs children, like my coworker, would give anything for a cure. If you're pro-life, great. Be pro-life. Give these kids, and everyone else affected by life-altering conditions, a chance at life. Why do pro-life people stop at the womb? After someone's born there are LOTS of opportunities to extend and benefit life. Be against smoking. Be for better cancer screening. Be for LIFE. But they're focused only on the first splitting cell and not on the full life of the person. Stem cells are not murder, they're a chance at life.

    Palin needs to grow up and stop hiding behind her skirts when it's too hot . She can't smack the crap out of the Obama Biden camp and then be upset when something hits her too close to home.

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  15. Carmen

    Way to go Biden, now we know why you are our VP. Even Nancy Reagan whose huband Ronald, McSame likes to tout wants Stem Cell research. NO HOW, NO WAY, NO MCCAIN, NO PALIN

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  16. B. Obama, Chicago, Illinois

    Yes, America. I too knew it was a matter of time before Seantor Biden said something stupid like this...but I need his foreign policy credentials to show me where Irad and Afgahnistan are on the map. : (

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  17. Get Real

    Just another twist.

    I think Teh REpublicans picked her to make this election based on identity politics. Look at all of her issues that they can jump up on and cry foul:

    1, DS Infant (I still believe that child is her grandchild) – hits both Abortion and Stem Cell issue
    2. Pregnant teen – hits both Abortion and Abstinence Only Issue
    3. Working Female – Hits gender Politics
    4. Small town – hits of this Elitist Crap
    5. Son in Iraq – War issue
    6. Far Right Religious Beliefs- Separation of Church/State

    If she doesn't see that the Republicans are using her I don't know what she is thinking

    I am sick and tired of every time someone goes after her on isseus they start crying foul... it sexism, it;s personal.

    It is personal to everyday Americans... She is not qualified and we do not want her and MCBush running our nation.

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  18. McCain the Copy-Cat

    You drew blood that time Biden.

    September 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  19. Anonymous

    Have you no sense of decency, sir?

    Of course not its all about OBAMA/BIDEN.

    Unlike what you seem to think the American people ARE NOT IDIOTS

    End the hate and quit the insults towards those that have the insight and historical insight to not vote for OBAMA/BIDEN.

    Just two of the same Dem hate filled blame everything on GOP, admin I claim to be change but they ARE more of the same.
    No wait they do seem a bit different they are more left leaning recent Dem candidates for president.

    Starting to feel sorry for his supporters and those two they put their faith in.

    September 9, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  20. Peggy in Ohio

    To Palin and McCain: The leaders of Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan and Russia aren't going to give Palin a break because she is a woman. If she suggests that she should be in line for the Presidency, then she ought to be able to take the hits from Americans first! It's fair game.

    Desperate for change from Obama and Biden!

    September 9, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  21. CL OT

    The Dems are getting desperate. They are dropping like a rock in the polls and have no answers for the Dream Team.

    September 9, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  22. Vegas Barbie for Obama

    How about the fact that Gov. Palin actually cut funding for programs to help special needs children during her SHORT tenure as the head of THAT state. The McCain campaign will pimp the fact that she has a special needs kid out to the max. It started with her parading that precious child, who should have been somewhere away from all that noise and hubub, all over the stage at the Republican Convention. That was a disgrace. Stay strong, Joe, do not back down!
    OBAMA/BIDEN '08 & '12! YES WE CAN!!

    September 9, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |

    Way to go Biden.Expose these hyprocites.

    September 9, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  24. Donna from Colorado Springs

    I totally agree with Biden. The republicans have been dead set against stem cell research for years. Now, because Palin has a special needs child, are they going to flip flop on that stance? They have no right to be upset about anything. Their campaign is fueled by lies and distortions, so they need to expect the dems to fight them on anything we think is another one of their lies. McBush and Palin are temporarily ahead in the polls right now. Why, I don't know! If the country chooses to believe Mr. John [I'm different than Bush] McCain, then, by all means, vote for the most dangerous ticket ever. But, The rest of us will not listen to their whining when they wake up and realize what a terrible mistake they made with their choice!

    September 9, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  25. SCM DC

    Way to go, Joe! Yes, Repubs, the truth hurts!

    Obama/Biden 08

    September 9, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
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