Biden Warns Liberals: 'We Always Lose the Bumper Sticker War with Republicans'
Vice President Joe Biden advised progressives to “stop being apologetic” and defend the Obama administration’s record in the upcoming presidential election.
“We're now in a situation where we can't back up. We can't walk away. I know, again, I get criticized for being too straightforward, but, dammit, we ought to stand up and say what we believe and stand by it. Defend it. Don't back away from it. We should run on what we’ve done,” Biden said at the Center for American Progress gala.
“Whoever is running should also talk about what the resurgence in place in the future is and talk about in 2016 what we’ve done. Some say this amounts to a third term for the President Obama. I call it sticking with what works and expanding on it to restore the middle class.”
Biden said the Obama administration’s economic initiatives, including the $816 billion Recovery Act in 2009, have worked.
“I just think we have to stop being apologetic – apologetic for anything we’ve done because what we’ve done has been correct and if we don't explain to people why this happened, then we are going to lose the bumper sticker war,” he said. “And we always do lose the bumper sticker war with the Republicans. When you don't think government matters, it’s easy to denigrate it. It’s harder to make the case to build something.”
The former Democratic senator from Delaware said the Republicans have beaten the Democrats in messaging.
“You heard immediately when the majority leader said – he acknowledged there’s been a genuine recovery and he said it was because of the anticipation and the expectation of a Republican Congress. Now, you guys make fun of these guys, but guess what? They’ve been better than us in messaging,” Biden told the audience. “They’ve been better than us and if they say it enough, and we don't speak out, it will seep back in.”
In Biden’s view, the way voters perceive the economic recovery is going to “set the terms” of the political debate in the future, particularly for the next year.
“The country now faces and will continue to face a stark choice and it really is stark: A return to the failed policies of the Republican Party – the vision that caused the Great Recession – or we're going to continue on a path that will allow us to really have genuine resurgence and bring the middle class back in the game,” he said.
Biden explained that being called “Middle Class Joe” around Washington is supposed to be perceived as an insult.