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Biden's 'bullets' quip draws GOP rebuke

 

Updated 5:04 p.m.: LAS VEGAS -- Vice President Joe Biden drew a rebuke from Republicans on Thursday after he referenced GOP vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan's policy manifesto, "Young Guns," by warning that "the bullets are aimed at you."

After Biden mentioned the book, which Ryan co-wrote with two other top House Republicans, a man in the crowd of about 500 at a Las Vegas union hall yelled out "they have guns with no bullets!" 

Vice President Joe Biden delivers his own rant on former Gov. Mitt Romney's "binders full of women" tale and spits out one-liners while campaigning in Las Vegas, Nevada.

"Unfortunately, the bullets are aimed at you," Biden said, to mirth from the boisterous crowd.

The exchange prompted an immediate statement from Romney spokesman Brendan Buck, who decried the language as "over the top."

"Today's over-the-top rhetoric by Vice President Biden is disappointing, but not all that surprising," Buck wrote. "In the absence of a vision or a plan to move the country forward, the Vice President is left only with ugly political attacks beneath the dignity of the office he occupies."

No stranger to controversy, Biden faced heavy scrutiny in August for telling a heavily black audience in southern Virginia that Romney's Wall Street deregulation would "put y'all back in chains."

Ironically, Biden opened his remarks in Nevada by doing something he often does: joking about his propensity to veer off-script.

"The vice president’s exchange with an audience member today was clearly a reference to how the policies discussed in Paul Ryan’s book, 'Young Guns,' would devastate the middle class," said Amy Dudley, a campaign spokeswoman for the vice president. "Given that people don't assume that Paul Ryan is literally a gun, it probably makes sense not to assume that Joe Biden was speaking literally about bullets."

The Sin City stop was Biden's last campaign event of a 2-day western swing that focused heavily on women's issues and immigration.

In Las Vegas, Biden warned that a Romney presidency would likely erase the gains of advocates of abortion rights.

"After these debates, you have any doubt who they will likely appoint to the Supreme Court of the United States," Biden said. "How much chance do you think Roe v. Wade will survive after four years of a Romney Supreme Court?"

He also uncorked a new zinger, adapted from yesterday's full news cycle of Democrats labellng Romney's plans as "sketchy."

"Well folks, I don't think they were just sketchy," he declared. "I think they were etch-a-sketchy!"