Vice President Joe Biden mounted an all-out assault on Mitt Romney's economic record on Tuesday, accusing him of creating jobs overseas but not in the United States.
Biden also cited the former Massachusetts governor's Swiss bank account and money socked away in the Cayman Islands as evidence he was "out of touch" with the middle class, and bluntly charged that Romney has it in for "the American worker."
"You've got to give Mitt Romney credit," the vice president said. "He is a job creator--in Singapore, and China, India. He's been very good at creating jobs overseas."
The Romney campaign hit back, with spokeswoman Andrea Saul saying that Biden had "doubled down on the Obama campaign's same misleading attacks in an effort to distrat voters from the president's disastrous economic record."
But the vice president's remarks to a boisterously supportive crowd in Waterloo, Iowa, reinforced what has become President Barack Obama's message on the sputtering recovery, the top issue on voters' minds and the incumbent's most glaring vulnerability. Obama has been arguing that the question on the ballot in November is not whether Americans are struggling three and a half years after he took office—they are—but how each candidate would boost the economy. He has painted Romney as an "outsourcing pioneer" whose policies have the intention or the effect of chiefly helping the wealthiest Americans. The Republican candidate has responded by accusing Obama of having a government-knows-best approach that has stifled job creation.
The Obama campaign has been making political hay from a recent Washington Post report that linked Romney's Bain Capital investment firm to companies that shipped jobs overseas to places like China and India. The Washington Post's politics fact-checker had previously taken a dim view of such allegations, branding them completely false. Biden expanded the campaign's line of attack, accusing Romney in unusually sharp terms of seeing demands from American workers seeking better wages or health care coverage "as part of the problem."
"The president and I don't see American workers as part of the problem," said the vice president. "We see you as part of the solution."
In a lengthy rebuttal, Saul charged that Obama "thinks that economic development means sending billions of taxpayer dollars to foreign-owned companies" and "rewarding donors"--references to foreign and politically connected firms that got cash in the president's economic stimulus legislation of 2009.
"On day One, Mitt Romney will take action to jumpstart our economy and give job creators the incentives they need to thrive here in America," she said.