September 18th, 2008
06:05 PM ET
12 years ago

Biden defends the link between patriotism and higher taxes

Sen. Biden is sticking by his recent comments on taxes.

Sen. Biden is sticking by his recent comments on taxes.

AKRON, Ohio (CNN) – Hours after drawing Republican fire over a comment that those making more $250,000 per year will be expected to pay higher taxes because “it’s time to be patriotic,” Joe Biden told supporters in a small union hall Thursday afternoon that the wealthy are patriotic but “we have not asked anything of them.”

Earlier, John McCain and Sarah Palin seized on the original remark from Barack Obama’s running mate. “To the rest of America that's not patriotism,” said Palin at an Iowa rally. “Raising taxes is about killing jobs and hurting small businesses and making things worse." McCain called the comment “just plain dumb.”

Biden said both Obama and McCain are in favor of tax cuts - but the decision over who gets them is a question of values.

“Is it a higher value that [those making more than $250,000] get that tax cut?” Biden asked. “Or should we take that $130 billion and give it to families making less than $150,000 all the way down the ladder? What do you value? Tell me what you value.”

“The point I want to make to you,” Biden added, “is wealthy people are just as patriotic as poor people. We just have not asked anything of them.”

After repeating “it’s a time to be patriotic,” Biden argued that the county has “no problem sending our kids to war” and hit McCain for not supporting the recent GI Bill.

“I tell you Democrats,” Biden said angrily, “don't you step down from anybody telling you that we don't value, we don't have American values. I have had it up to here. I have had enough. Tell me what you value!”

Biden also jabbed McCain and Palin for not holding press conferences. The Republican nominee hasn’t had one in over a month, and Palin hasn’t since being named to the GOP ticket. Biden said he was asked by a reporter what he thought of Palin but replied he didn’t know because she doesn’t talk to the press.

“I don’t have any idea. I don’t know!” exclaimed Biden. “It’s not just Sarah Palin. When’s the last time John had a press conference?”

Looking over at Ohio Governor Ted Strickland, he added, “Ted, you and I know, when elected officials stop holding press conferences, it ain’t because he’s found a new way to communicate, it’s because he doesn’t want to communicate.”

McCain spokesman Ben Porritt responded that in the midst of a troubled economy and a presidential election, “Why on earth does Barack Obama’s running mate worry so much about our media relations strategy?”

Filed under: Economy • Joe Biden
soundoff (217 Responses)
  1. Larry


    September 18, 2008 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  2. Phooey

    Here's why I favor repealing Bush tax cuts for corporations...we could funnel those extra taxed into a trust fund to pay for their own bailouts !

    September 18, 2008 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  3. RapidRay

    “Why on earth does Barack Obama’s running mate worry so much about our media relations strategy?”

    Because it is a series of lies and fabrications set in the tone of a Karl Rove smear campaign. The same kind of crap that got us here twice before.

    Joe's right. ENOUGH!!!!

    September 18, 2008 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  4. pa.joe

    Why won't McCain and Palin hold press conferences?
    I would avoid the press to if my economic policies were failing miserably!

    September 18, 2008 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  5. was democrat

    I agree,Obama would have a hugh lead if he had Hillary with him.

    September 18, 2008 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  6. Matt

    Hey Larry, prices may indeed go up in response ot more taxes, but consumers (i.e., demand) exercising choice not to buy those products will bring it back down. CEO's will just have to accept that their excessive compensation packages might have to become a little less excessive. This keeps the power of choice in the consumers' hands.

    The real problem you don't want to admit is that there is ZERO evidence from the past century that your Randian trickle-down Reagonmics actually works. The FACT is, your precious tax cuts for corporate America will just go right into corporate America's pockets, will NOT create jobs and will NOT spur pay raises. Greed rules these people and we're seeing the effects thereof RIGHT NOW.

    September 18, 2008 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  7. Jenny in CA

    I'm so sick of people talking about Socialism. What the Republicans have done thru de-regulation was privatize big earnings, but socialize losses since we the taxpayers will be paying for it in the long run.

    I'll take Obama and Biden anyday.

    I wish Palin and McCain would go away already, whenever I hear their voices it's like nails on a chalkboard.

    September 18, 2008 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  8. Debbie Joyner

    Matt – hmm – it wasn't my statistic but I can tell you that you don't pay that 15% on your first dollar of income – so 30,000 a year at 15% bracket DOESN"T equal $4,500 – you have to take all your deductions – to get to adjusted gross income – then the brackets start at 10% but don't let the facts get in your way.

    Sean – The 1% statistic is from the IRS – I'm sure they're lying about it and includes everyone who makes more than $388,000 and Mr. Brainiac you do pay income taxes on interest and dividends, they don't get to just sit in the bank. Payroll taxes are different – should I add the chart which % of people receive vastly more from social security compared to what they put into it and which don't.

    September 18, 2008 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  9. Emilio

    The rich hold the power in this country and with that great power comes great responsability. If the republicans truely cared about "County First" then they would do everything in there power to get us out of this rut, including paying more taxes.

    September 18, 2008 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  10. Perusing-Through

    GO BIDEN, GO!!!

    September 18, 2008 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  11. Republican Mama for Obama

    Larry, Obama is nothing like Bush. That's truly laughable. I guess you meant to type McSame =Bush. Get with the times.

    September 18, 2008 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |

    stan turecki, typical Repug manipulation of the numbers to suit their lies. You Repug thieves are going down.

    September 18, 2008 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  13. Walt, Belton,TX

    Check and see how much taxes wealthy people pay, Joe. Now add them up slowly so you can comprehend the fact that they pay the vast majority of your worthless salary!

    September 18, 2008 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  14. JulesT

    Biden is saying what McCain has said from the begining on this nice "tax cut" for the wealthy, that it is unfair. Somewhere down the line though, McCain lost touch with average american and "traded up"; he changed his mind and decided that yes, the wealthy do deserve the tax break the Bush has implemented, and hey lets make it permanent.

    So the next time McCain pretends he is like the rest of us, someone should ask him how does it feel to live paycheck by paycheck, not because of poor planning on our part, but because our economy has "tanked". And then have him explain again why he feels the wealthy deserve a permanent tax break.

    Obama and Biden are more like the average american than McCain or Palin. For either McCain or Palin say otherwise is a bunch of crock.

    September 18, 2008 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  15. Republican Mama for Obama

    Palin is a puppet, pa.joe. McCain rushed in to save her when someone asked for 'specific foreign policy experience' during their town hall meeting last night. I imagine she is feverishly cramming for her debate with Joe Biden in a few weeks...

    September 18, 2008 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |

    Typical of McShame and Sarah "Where the Heck Am I" to try and again turn a statement around. It's okay for the both of you to do it, but boy if Obama does it, there's sexism and non patriotism involved. Hey Johnny and Ms. Clueless get a life and start addressing real isues.

    Hey Nickle & Dime you probably also believe McShame invented the Blackberry. What next ? McShame invented the wheel???

    September 18, 2008 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  17. Helen, NY

    Biden is another joke. They have no issued. Just attack McCain and Palin. Barack is doing the same thing and CNN has the media to publish it. God save this country from these evils.

    September 18, 2008 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
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