October 14th, 2008
04:40 PM ET
14 years ago

Biden disappointed McCain will raise Ayers in debate

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/14/art.bidendisappt1014.ap.jpg caption="Sen. Biden said Tuesday that he is disappointed with some of the tactics planned by his longtime friend Sen. John McCain."]
LISBON, Ohio (CNN) – Joe Biden told reporters Tuesday afternoon he is disappointed John McCain is planning to bring up Barack Obama's acquaintance with 1960s radical Bill Ayers at Wednesday night’s debate, but said all Obama has to do to win is repeat his last two performances.

“I think what the debate has shown, the last two debates, is a guy who's confident and steady, and a guy who's not quite sure of where he wants to take the country,” said Biden, waiting for a cheeseburger and shake at Lisbon’s Steel Trolley Diner. “I think all Barack's got to do is repeat the performance he's had the last two times out. I feel good about it, I have total confidence in him.”

Asked how he feels about news that McCain said Ayers will come up, Biden seemed to hope his old friend the Arizona senator would change his mind.

“I'm disappointed, but we'll see. Let's see what, what he does.”

In every campaign speech, Biden makes sure to tell supporters that he and McCain have been friends for decades, and just disagree on policy. He likes to tell a story from the 2000 campaign when McCain and his family were being personally attacked by supporters of then-Texas Gov. George Bush, Biden called McCain and offered to hit the trail to vouch for his character.

So why doesn’t he call McCain now about the character attacks the Arizona senator is launching against Obama?

“I know John knows my views. I know he knows my views. I expressed them in a – in a slightly different way earlier,” said Biden after explaining he tried to call McCain around 9/11.

“I was proud that John decided to take on some of that attitude that was expressed at his, one of his campaign rallies. And I hope he keeps it up,” Biden said, but added he thinks McCain’s ads featuring Ayers are over the top.

“I think the average person looks out there and sees this guy who they say is a known terrorist, and I think they – the vast majority of the American people associate terrorism with, you know, radical Islamic groups and al Qaeda. I just think it's – I think it's over the top.”

Biden has done a number of national and local interviews since being tapped as Obama’s running mate, but his staff has kept him sequestered from the reporters that travel on his campaign plane. The impromptu Q&A in Lisbon was the first time Biden has spoken to the press traveling with his campaign in over five weeks.

soundoff (283 Responses)
  1. Darth Vadik, CA

    Gloria, NY,

    What you have said is one of the dumbest, most ignororant statements I have read, and everybody is just a little dumber for reading it.

    Have you been noticing that Sarah Palin under investigation for power abuse, and God knows what else, or are you sleeping under a rock.

    The woman is a whacko that thak God will bring McCain down.
    Plus Republicans are not at their best with women and minorities, the Democrats are the one with a big ent policy, not the pale old corrupt white men Republican policy.

    October 14, 2008 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  2. NJ

    you know what "Bridge to Delaware" Joe, We're disappointed in your
    FLIP FLOP, I voted for Iraq, but I didn't want to. now I know I was wrong, to Plagiarism.This is your last shot to tag along with Obama and hope that you get to be his VP. You're a has been. GO BACK TO DELAWARE AND TAKE OBAMA WITH YOU!!!!!!!

    October 14, 2008 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  3. bill

    let mcbush bring up ayers its time to set this idiot straight ketting five in 26 years in congress mcbush had better be carful of throwing stones

    October 14, 2008 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  4. Josh in San Antonio Texas

    Hey Vic, get your facts straight – Biden properly CITED that speech at least a dozen times...but then there was in fact one time he forgot to cite the source (for which he has since admitted his mistake). Big difference from "stealing the contents of an article".

    Nice way to stretch the truth though – perhaps YOU should enter politics!

    October 14, 2008 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  5. N.S of Huntsville, Al

    Hey Biden, let your old friend bring up Ayers, Wright, Acorn who gives damm?

    I am not voting for McCain, I don't even think the Wright things is that big of a deall because Wright said what he has experienced so what, he is a nut but, what other pastors out there are clear and clean of not being prejudice? You have catholics who not long ago was melasting children, you have Pailns religion condeming the USA and wants to be seperated from us. So who care. Aryes is guilty, but he is a professor minding his own damm business, what is he bothering. Did anyone condemm and want to band Bush for starting a war in Iraq and they didn't cause 9/11? Hell no so Republicans can go somewhere with the prejudice, lieing, stealing, corupt behinds.
    So bring up whatever you want, if you want Obama to answer go for it, it won't stop his stride, nor his VICTORY.

    Remember whats for you, know one can take from you!

    October 14, 2008 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  6. Kathryn

    Great, let the desperate old senator bring it up. That will give Senator Obama one more chance to explain his relationship, such as it is, with Ayers once and for all and on nationwide television. I'm sure he welcomes the opportunity. McCain will be the one left with egg on his face...not Obama. And I hope while McCain does it he keeps wandering around, like in his last debate, so he looks like an Alzheimer's patient after sundown.

    October 14, 2008 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  7. paul

    How many times will McCain say "my friends?" Any bets on him at least alluding to his Viet Nam service? Any bets on how many times he will erroneously speak about Obama's tax stance?

    October 14, 2008 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  8. Preco, NY

    At least three of McCain's GOP colleagues have gone on record to say that they consider him temperamentally unsuited to be commander in chief.
    Smith, the former senator from New Hampshire, has said that McCain's "temper would place this country at risk in international affairs, and the world perhaps in danger. In my mind, it should disqualify him."
    Sen. Domenici of New Mexico has said he doesn't "want this guy anywhere near a trigger."
    And Sen. Thad Cochran of Mississippi weighed in that "the thought of his being president sends a cold chill down my spine. He is erratic. He is hotheaded."

    October 14, 2008 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
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