Bi­den eases into role as Team Obama at­tack dog

The Washington Times Daily - - Politics -

TOLEDO, OHIO | Make no mis­take, the pres­i­den­tial cam­paign is well un­der way for Democrats as well as Repub­li­cans: Vice Pres­i­dent Joseph R. Bi­den called out Mitt Rom­ney and other Re­pub­li­can hope­fuls Thurs­day as “dead wrong” about the auto bailout.

Mr. Bi­den’s sharply worded at­tack marked a new of­fen­sive by Mr. Obama’s re-elec­tion team as it seeks to set the terms for the gen­eral elec­tion while Mr. Rom­ney and his GOP ri­vals are still mired in their party’s nom­i­nat­ing process.

In keep­ing with tra­di­tion, Mr. Bi­den, as No. 2 on the ticket, will be the cam­paign en­forcer, lev­el­ing tar­geted at­tacks on Repub­li­cans. And his speech be­fore a bois­ter­ous crowd of about 500 at a United Auto Work­ers hall in po­lit­i­cally cru­cial Ohio sug­gested it’s a role he plans to em­brace fully.

“If you give any one of these guys the keys to the White House, they will bank­rupt the mid­dle class,” Mr. Bi­den said of the Re­pub­li­can field.

“Gin­grich and Rom­ney and San­to­rum, they don’t let the facts get in the way,” he added. It was no­table that Mr. Bi­den crit­i­cized the Repub­li­cans by name. He and Mr. Obama gen­er­ally have re­frained from do­ing that, aim­ing their crit­i­cism more gen­er­ally at Repub­li­cans or generic op­po­nents.

AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

Vice Pres­i­dent Joseph R. Bi­den ag­gres­sively en­tered the 2012 cam­paign Thurs­day with a speech at a United Auto Work­ers hall in Toledo, Ohio. Mr. Bi­den called out Re­pub­li­can pres­i­den­tial hope­fuls for not sup­port­ing the auto bailout.

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