Biden hits Romney-Ryan ticket as a 'stark choice'
August 13th, 2012
03:21 PM ET
9 years ago

Biden hits Romney-Ryan ticket as a 'stark choice'

(CNN) - Fresh off a beachside vacation, Vice President Joe Biden resumed his campaign trail attacks Monday, this time with a new target in the mix.

Biden, at an event in Durham, North Carolina, argued the decision to pick Rep. Paul Ryan as Mitt Romney's running mate offers a "stark choice" for voters this fall.

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"The differences couldn't be more clearly laid out through the selection than you're going to hear," Biden said.

Biden called Ryan on Sunday to congratulate the Wisconsin congressman, who was announced as Romney's No. 2 at a campaign even in Norfolk, Virginia the day prior. But the vice president said the move to put Ryan on the ticket further clarifies the differences between the two campaigns this fall.

"These are stark, stark choices," Biden said.

Democrats have since pounced on the running mate pick, using the House budget committee chairman's controversial budget plan as a way to paint a Romney presidency as a threat to popular entitlement programs, like Medicare and Social Security.

Ryan's $3.5 trillion budget proposal, first introduced in 2011, includes the provision that Medicare-approved private insurers would one day compete with traditional Medicare on an exchange. The proposal would not affect Americans currently over age 55. The plan's opponents, however, say that would increase the financial burden on senior citizens.

In his remarks Monday, Biden refrained from digging too far into the so-called Ryan plan, instead using the opportunity to tie Romney with House Republicans, at large.

"Congressman Ryan has given definition to the vague commitments that Romney's been making. There's definition to it now," Biden said. "It's clear. Congressman Ryan and the Congressional Republicans…have already passed in the House what Governor Romney is promising to give the whole nation."

The vice president countered the idea that the policies promoted by a Romney-Ryan White House would offer bold solutions.

"What's gutsy about giving millionaires another tax break, what's gutsy about gutting Medicare, Medicaid, education? What's gutsy?" Biden said.

Defending his proposals, Ryan said Sunday his plan would retool Medicare so that it remains financially soluble for future generations.

"My mom is a Medicare senior in Florida," he said in an interview with CBS News. "Our point is we need to preserve their benefits, because government made promises to them that they've organized their retirements around."

Romney has in turn embraced Ryan's budget plan in the past, comparing them to some of his own economic policies. The presumptive GOP nominee, however, has not made Ryan's plan a part of his platform in the 2012 campaign, and in a set of campaign talking points obtained by CNN on Saturday, surrogates are reminded, "Of course they aren't going to have the same view on every issue."

Responding to the speech, Romney's campaign said Biden "doubled down" on what it called the "failed policies" of the Obama administration.

"Vice President Biden today doubled down on the same failed policies that have resulted in skyrocketing debt, higher taxes and record job losses," Romney spokesman Ryan Williams said in a statement. "The Romney-Ryan ticket will lay out a bold vision for our country and promote commonsense policies that will create jobs, help the middle class and turn around our struggling economy."

But the vice president on Monday argued Romney's choice of Ryan will turn off voters in the end, arguing the selection represents a move further to the right within the Republican Party.

"Folks, this ain't your father's Republican Party. It's not even Governor Romney's father's Republican Party," Biden said, referring to the late George Romney, former Michigan governor and one-time presidential candidate.

Biden's speech came shortly after President Barack Obama delivered jabs against Ryan, warning an Iowa crowd about the congressman's position on the controversial farm bill.

"I am told that Governor Romney's new running mate Paul Ryan might be around Iowa the next few days. He is one of the leaders of Congress standing in the way. So, if you happen to see congressman Ryan tell him how important this farm bill is to Iowa and our rural communities," the president said.

- CNN's Kevin Liptak contributed to this report.

Filed under: 2012 • Joe Biden • North Carolina • Paul Ryan
soundoff (140 Responses)
  1. California

    Biden the Buffoon at it again.

    August 13, 2012 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  2. Howard

    HOPE AND CHANGE = Replacing Obama with Romney & Ryan ... followed by replacing the far left, biased, partisan main stream media with fair, balanced and objective journalists !!!

    August 13, 2012 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  3. rs

    Essentially, the choice is: Vote for the party that advocates ONLY for the 1%, or vote for the party that is for the middle class, the poor and the elderly.

    Certainly there is more nuace than that, and specific policy questions and answers, but by picking Mr. Ryan, Mr. Romney has signaled he has no interest in the concerns or lives of the vast majority of Americans. He simply abandoned them.

    August 13, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  4. rla

    You nailed it and the choice between you and Obama and two super humans in romney and ryan is a no brainer. You had four years and you did every thing wrong and are now lieing to the American people about it... Guess what this isn't Kansas OPPS Chicago anymore

    August 13, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  5. Darryl

    I watched the speech Joe Biden gave in N.Carolina. Joe doesn't sugar coat anything at all. He gave a great speech and was right on the money. Pres. Obama will be re-elected there's no doubt about it.

    August 13, 2012 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  6. king

    oh oh, who let the dog out biden is on the prowl again , looking for a mitten and munster to bite. the 1 percenters have been parading their jobs cutting duo around, as angels of light, as they hide the 1 percenters tax hiding skeems and gut the gullible average americans. this looks like bush campaign all over again. how the hell are you going to cut folks jobs and expect local small businesses to survive, when their food stamps customers and government worker customers stop coming through their doors.

    August 13, 2012 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  7. bob

    Anything coming from the most ridiculous vice president in history can immediately be discounted. Biden is an embarrassment to his ticket, his party and his nation. I would love to see a debate between Ryan and Biden. That would be the death nail in the Obama-Biden campaign. Of course, we still have to see what nasty little lies the left (not to be confused with liberals) dreams up for Ryan.

    August 13, 2012 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  8. jo an is about a SMALL WORLD favor of the !%...or a BIG WORLD VIEW...'share the wealth'...THAT SIMPLE!!

    August 13, 2012 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  9. Obama - 4 Years of Lying, 4 Years of FAILURE

    Biden hits Romney-Ryan ticket as a 'stark choice'
    You can say that again!! The incompetent Obama/Senile Biden team with no plans or solutions versus the Competent Romney/Intelligent Ryan team WITH plans and solutions!!

    August 13, 2012 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  10. alex

    Biden in 2012 hahahahaha now that is a joke

    August 13, 2012 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |

    It certainly is a choice. A choice to diminish the middle class against a choice to save the middle class. This sure isn't George Romney's Republican Party. At least George Romney had some integrity and released his TAXES.

    August 13, 2012 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  12. Jon

    Ok ... heavy sigh of relief ... One more day Biden didnt stick his food in his mouth. That wont last long, Ryan will tear up Biden in the debate.

    August 13, 2012 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  13. Count Kolob & his Ayn Rand (author of 'Selfishness is a Virtue') disciple Paul Ryan, have new safety net for the poor, sick & elderly called "Path to Puratory" in which you wait for the generic cure of what ailed you

    Just save $400 from Ryan's "voucher" of $6,000 to buy a gun and one bullet, in case you exhaust the voucher and have to go to the GOP's "Plan B" for seniors.

    August 13, 2012 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  14. Jon

    what would you rather have ... a R&R rail roald or a B&O one ... lol ... B&O seems stinky to me

    August 13, 2012 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  15. NoLongerRepublican

    LOL...Ryan just got his *** handed to him in Iowa. People protesting at his rally, he had to get the authorities to remove the hecklers while they shouted "stop the war on the middle class"....I have a feeling there is lots more of this to come.

    August 13, 2012 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  16. SHADES

    ObamaCare cuts a half-trillion dollars from Medicare over the next decade. These cuts are
    unsustainable and will lead to a reduction in the quality of care for seniors who rely on the program to secure access to needed medical services. The cuts in Medicare Advantage will impose steep costs on millions of Medicare beneficiaries, and will fall disproportionately on low income and minority seniors.

    go away Biden, and take the Kenyan with you

    August 13, 2012 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  17. FedUp

    Yes, it is a stark choice. Either we can fall off the fiscal cliff with Obama (who really believes he will apply the tax increases to the national debt?) or take the chance that Romney will actually do something other than taxnd spend. Obama had his chance and accepted the economy as his in summer 2009. At that point, everything became his – no more blaming Bush. He has done nothing except spend more than all the other presidents put together. There was hope that he would make a difference. All I have is change in my pocket due to this economy. Sorry, Mr. Obama. You said you would be accountable if the deficit was not less than half at the end of your first term, and you would be a one term president. I will hold you to that.

    August 13, 2012 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  18. obama is Out Of Touch with reality

    Stark Choice, Are You Better Off Now than You Were Four Years Ago, Simple Answer NO! obama and biden are both hell bent on destroying America so you make the choice, The Death Of The American Dream or a Better Way Of Life Without the Socialist obama.

    August 13, 2012 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  19. Randy, San Francisco

    The excitement will fade quickly when voters discover the detals of Ryan's Medicare, Social Security, and Budget plans. Shifting the tax burden from the rich to the middle class is not "trickle down theory", it is called stealing and morally repugnant.

    August 13, 2012 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  20. george of the jungle

    ryan has been in washington over 14 years . He is one of the smart guys that got us in this mess. So much for his economics. Joe is so much more qualified. Remember this is the party that nominated palin. And look who ran newt and rick and michell. What a bunch of idiots. Did you see how mittens hung on every word paul uttered. Mitt is so dumb ryan will be running the show and if anything goes wrong mitt can say he didn't know. Forward 2012 or it's back to the 50' for women and seniors and health issues in general and we will all pay the taxes for the 1%

    August 13, 2012 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  21. Rudy NYC


    HOPE AND CHANGE = Replacing Obama with Romney & Ryan ... followed by replacing the far left, biased, partisan main stream media with fair, balanced and objective journalists !!!
    Just in case you haven't noticed. If you get rid of the "main" stream then all that remains are the fringe elements along the outside edges of the stream.

    August 13, 2012 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  22. myviewis

    "In his remarks Monday, Biden refrained from digging too far into the so-called Ryan plan"
    That's because Biden doesn't understand economics, math, accounting. Oh, Biden didn't explain how he and Obama justify taking $500 Billion dollars from Medicare to fund Obamacare, how exactly is this good????

    August 13, 2012 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  23. Jerry

    Mr. Biden, a starker choice than yours and Mr. Obamaloney's?! I think NOT!!!

    August 13, 2012 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  24. Reggiedw

    Biden you are such a goofball.....its a wonder that anybody would take you seriuosly. Biden will be both dumb and dumber when the VP debate happens in October. Ryan is such an intelleigent man that when you hear Biden speak, you wondr how did ever get to be VP for Obama. I suppose it is the 2 stoogies.......suited for each other.

    August 13, 2012 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  25. once upon a horse

    gotta love Romney's slogan "for a stronger Middle Class" darn right we better be stronger since it's gonna be us and the lower class getting the SHAFT if this bunch gets in office!

    August 13, 2012 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
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