Top of the Ticket

Political commentary from the LA Times

« Previous Post | Top of the Ticket Home | Next Post »

Oops! Joe Biden's smart mouth gives GOP more ammo with botched Wisconsin trip

June 27, 2010 | 10:39 am

06-27-joe-biden
Would you call it a disastrous trip?

Maybe not disastrous, but memorable. You will hear about Vice President Joe Biden's trip to the Wisconsin custard shop many times over the course of the next five months.

The simple campaign-like stop will give conservatives even more ammunition in an upcoming midterm election season that already looks ominous for President Obama.

Walking into a custard shop and asking where the ice cream is isn’t a huge offense.  Homer Simpson would do it.  Joe Biden did that when visiting a Kopp’s Frozen Custard store in Wisconsin on Friday. 

However, it was the follow-up exchange that’s generating a lot of buzz.

After Biden gets his custard, he asks the store manager how much he owes him.

“Lower our taxes and we’ll call it even,” the manager replied.

Biden didn’t acknowledge that.  Refusing to even look at him, Biden turned and....

...walked away from the manager, appearing to just blow him off.

It’s odd that Biden didn’t have something to say because politicians get hit on this all the time. Republican or Democrat, people always tell elected officials they want their taxes lowered.

You would expect a “God love ya, we’re doin’ everything we can to get the economy jump-started again.”

A few minutes later, Biden is caught on video again telling the manager: “Why don’t you say something nice instead of being a smartass all the time?  Say something nice.”

The manager went on to tell a local TV reporter that the vice president went up to him later and whispered that he was just joking.  The manager also said, however, it didn’t appear to him that Biden appreciated the comment.

That’s self-evident.  You can pick that up in Biden’s body language. (Of course, being caught on tape using salty language is nothing new for Biden.  He memorialized the president’s healthcare bill signing by saying it was a "big ... deal.”)

Everyone could get a charge of out that, saying that was Joe Biden just being Joe Biden.  But this one’s different.  Telling a voter he’s a "smartass" for requesting lower taxes is something the Republicans can and will use.

One thing’s for sure: The term has just entered the 2010 official election lexicon.

-- Jimmy Orr

Click here to receive Twitter alerts of each new Ticket item. Follow us@latimestot  or Like our Facebook page. We're also available on Kindle.

Photo: Screenshot of Joe Biden eating ice cream custard. Credit: WISN

Comments 

Advertisement










Video