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Biden explains his healthcare-victory expletive -- he didn't know the microphone was so sensitive

April 22, 2010 |  9:52 am

Vice President Biden whispers in President Obama's ear during signing ceremony for healthcare reform bill at White House March 23, 2010 by Getty Images

Of course it happened on ABC's "The View," that on-air celebrity talk show that manages to combine the political with the fashionable and remain civil. Most of the time.

Thursday was no exception as Vice President Joe Biden sat on the couch. He took questions from Barbara Walters on foreign policy (he predicted the U.N. will slap sanctions on Iran within the next month), deflected complaints from Whoopi Goldberg about taxes (who knew?), even survived a compliment from Elisabeth Hasselbeck that though they were on opposite sides of the political fence, she thought he was "a cool guy."

So here's the story. During the historic White House signing ceremony that ushered the healthcare reform bill into law, Biden introduced President Obama and whispered in his ear that the achievement was "a ------- big deal." Afterward, the two got into a presidential limousine and, Biden reported, Obama was "laughing like the devil" because he knew what Biden didn't -- that the comment had been captured by a microphone.

"I was just thankful my mother couldn't hear it. It was a little embarrassing," Biden said. "I realized there was a microphone, I just had no idea it was that sensitive."

One more thing. Asked about former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, Biden said, "If you meet her, she is a charming person."

Actually, the most interesting tidbits were personal. Biden said his wife Jill -- he described her as eight years younger when they met but now 22 years younger -- only accepted his marriage proposal when he asked for the fifth time.

-- Johanna Neuman

Photo: Vice President Biden whispers in President Obama's ear during the White House signing ceremony for healthcare reform in March. Credit: Getty Images

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