Vice President Joe Biden is doing what he can to remind Democrats that he shouldn't be dismissed as a potential 2016 presidential candidate, even though he lags far behind former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in hypothetical polling matchups for the Democratic nomination.
The latest example of Biden's campaign-style rhetoric came in his address to young liberals at a conference in Washington. Biden reminded them that he has been leading fights for progressive causes for many years. "I make absolutely no apologies for my passion," he said Wednesday, according to the Washington Times. "I've been at the center of most progressive battles for a long, long time. From the civil rights movement to Vietnam...to the right to choose, I have no problem for saying exactly what I feel and what I believe. What you may not know is, I think long and hard about what I say." Biden appeared to be addressing the criticism that he is gaffe-prone and sometimes gets into political trouble by speaking rashly off the cuff.
Biden also took aim at former Vice President Dick Cheney, his Republican predecessor, in Biden's address to Generation Progress, the youth-oriented progressive affiliate of the Center for American Progress. "I saw Vice President Cheney saying that we should be spending more money on our military, not on food stamps and highways," Biden said, according to Politico. "....When it comes to the safety of our warriors, we have to spend the money. But this idea of it's somehow inherently more important to spend money on the military than on domestic needs is a policy I reject. I reject it out of hand."
Biden is scheduled to speak before another youth-oriented group, Netroots Nation, in Detroit Thursday afternoon.
Clinton and Biden have not declared their intentions on whether they will run for president in 2016. Both of them ran unsuccessfully in 2008, when President Obama won the Democratic nomination and went on to win the White House.