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Biden: Romney 'out of touch' with the middle class

April 01, 2012|By Michael A. Memoli
  • Vice President Joe Biden was on the attack Sunday morning on CBS' "Face the Nation."
Vice President Joe Biden was on the attack Sunday morning on CBS' "Face… (CBSNews.com )

Vice President Joe Biden called Mitt Romney "out of touch" with the concerns of the middle class, the latest signal of how the Obama reelection campaign plans to target the leading Republican hopeful in November.

"This is about the middle class. And none of what he's offering does anything. It's just returning to the same policies," Biden said in an interview for CBS' "Face The Nation" that aired Sunday morning.

"I can't remember a presidential candidate in the recent past who seems not to understand by what he says what ordinary middle-class people are thinking about and are concerned about."

It's a similar line of attack that Joel Benenson, lead pollster for the Obama campaign, previewed to reporters in Washington this week at a breakfast meeting hosted by the centrist Democratic think tank Third Way.

Romney's biggest vulnerability in a general election, Benenson said, was "the sense that he is not in touch with the lives of ordinary, average Americans and that he doesn't really care about the struggles they're facing."

Biden also jabbed at a Romney soft spot: his seeming inconsistency on key issues. Responding to the former Massachusetts governor's criticism of President Obama over comments to Russian President Dmitry Medvedev about having greater "flexibility" to negotiate on a missile defense program after the November election, Biden began: "Speaking of flexibility, Gov. Romney's a pretty flexible guy in his positions." His criticism of the president showed, Biden added, "how little the governor knows about foreign policy."

Biden was interviewed in Wisconsin this week where he attended a fundraiser as Republicans were campaigning in the state ahead of Tuesday's key primary.

The vice president was hesitant to declare Romney the nominee, though he conceded he'd be surprised at this point if he wasn't.

But he attacked Romney and the GOP broadly for only staking out a position against what the Obama administration has done, and not offering an alternative. Biden used the healthcare reform law as an example.

"What is the Romney answer? There's nothing. All they argue is cut, get rid of that," he said.

Biden said there are "millions of people" benefiting from the law already, and that he was confident the Supreme Court would uphold it when it rules in June.

"No one's made any money betting on the outcome of cases based on the oral arguments," he said.


Original source: Biden: Romney 'out of touch' with the middle class

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