Biden: Voters Can Blame Obama for the Poor Economy

Vice president says it's legitimate for voters to see 2012 as a referendum on Obama and economy.

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Vice President Joe Biden hadn't been making much news lately, but that changed yesterday.

One of the most interesting stories of the past 24 hours was Biden's admission to public radio station WLRN in Miami that Americans can justifiably blame President Obama for the state of the economy. "Right now, we are the ones in charge," Biden said, "and it's gotten better but it hasn't gotten good enough." This is a departure for the administration because Obama and other senior officials have regularly blamed former President George W. Bush for the nation's economic woes.

[See photos of the Obamas behind the scenes.]

Biden said Americans have "good reason to be upset" because of unemployment, which is "something they didn't have a thing to do with creating."

Biden also said that while many Americans still blame Bush, "that's not relevant."

"What's relevant is we're in charge," Biden said.

[Check out political cartoons about the economy.]

The vice president added that it's "totally legitimate" for voters to view the 2012 election as a "referendum on Obama and Biden and the nature and state of the economy," but he added that as the campaign proceeds the balloting will become more of a choice between Obama and the eventual Republican nominee, and Obama will look much better by comparison.

Republicans saw it as reinforcement of what they have been saying for many months--that whatever problems Bush caused in the economy occurred long ago and have been superseded by the bad policies implemented by Obama. In any case, Republicans say, Obama was hired to fix the economy, and he has failed.

  • Read: Lack of Jobs for Young Workers Spells 2012 Trouble for Obama
  • See who's in Obama's inner circle.
  • Check out political cartoons about the 2012 GOP field.