…with People magazine.
PEOPLE sat down with President Obama one day after Biden’s remark to voters in Virginia on Tuesday – that GOP running mates Gov. Mitt Romney and Rep. Paul Ryan are “going to put y’all back in chains” – and asked the President if he’d spoken to Biden about the controversial comment.
“Joe Biden has been an outstanding vice president. He is passionate about what’s happening in middle-class families,” he said. “So I will be talking to him a whole lot about the campaign generally.”
Biden’s comment sparked Romney to call the Obama campaign one of “division and hate and anger.” But Obama, speaking to PEOPLE in Dubuque, Iowa, seemed unrattled by the controversy. He said Biden’s words needed to be considered in context; that he was only saying “you, consumers, the American people, will be a lot worse off if we repeal these [Wall Street reform] laws as the other side is suggesting.”
“In no sense was he trying to connote something other than that,” Obama added.
Pressed to say whether Biden’s wording was unfortunate or something he’s okay with, the president sighed. “The truth is that during the course of these campaigns, folks like to get obsessed with how something was phrased even if everybody personally understands that’s not how it was meant,” Obama said. “That’s sort of the nature of modern campaigns and modern coverage of campaigns. But I tell you, when I’m traveling around Iowa, that’s not what’s on people’s minds.”
Ed Morrissey also points to another hard-hitting interview President Obama did with the First Lady… on Entertainment Tonight:
Hey, maybe Entertainment Tonight is more hard-hitting than we knew! They got Obama to implicitly admit that he’d defended Biden earlier without qualification while not bothering to find out what Biden said. Quick, what’s the ET position on Medicare reform? Totally hot or box-office poison?
People and Entertainment Tonight in the same week? This is apparently the Obama campaign’s new media strategy — avoid the White House press corps at all costs.