ABC News’ Matthew Jaffe reports: Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del., Friday night made his first trip to Nevada as the Democratic vice presidential nominee, cautioning that in the 18 days before Election Day, Republicans will throw everything but the kitchen sink at the Democratic ticket. And if they’ve already thrown the kitchen sink, then they might throw the bathroom sink, too. And maybe more…
"You know what these guys are gonna do," Biden warned the 3,800-strong audience in a Henderson park, just outside Las Vegas. "You know, as that old saying goes – I thought they already threw the kitchen sink, but I think more is to come. I think other parts of the bathroom are coming. I don’t know, man, they’re going up and getting the bathroom sink. So look, we have a lot of reason to be encouraged, but it is far, far from over."
The senator continued to lash out at his Republican counterpart, Gov. Sarah Palin, for her statement at a Thursday Greensboro, N.C., fundraiser that she liked visiting "pro-America" parts of the country, even while he acknowledged that Palin had since attempted to clarify her comment.
"It doesn’t matter where you live," an animated Biden said, shouting and pounding the podium. "We all love our country, Gov. Palin. We all love our country! Barack Obama puts his country first! I put my country first! These people put their country first!"
With prominent Democrats like Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid decrying Republican tactics as "scummy", Biden hit out at GOP moves such as a robo-call which describe Obama as having "worked closely" with "domestic terrorist Bill Ayers."
"Gov. Palin may have stepped back from some of the divisive rhetoric today, but the Republican campaign has stepped up its attacks that are just as divisive," Biden said at the under-the-lights rally. "You may have seen Harry Reid’s comments today. You may have heard about the scurrilous phone calls that are coming into homes in Nevada, and in New Mexico where I was, and in Virginia where I am going, that question Barack Obama’s character and by implication question his patriotism. Let me tell you — they don’t hurt Barack Obama. They don’t hurt me. But they hurt the American people, because they’re going to attempt to distract you from the issues that matter to your daily lives. Ladies and gentlemen, Barack is a tough guy. He can take three more weeks of these attacks, but our country can’t take four more years of Bush-McCain policies.
"Look, one of the reasons Barack and I are running is we know how damaging, damaging the policies, the division have been for America over the last decade," Biden continued. "Literally, literally it is the fabric of this country, the tactics of Karl Rove, it’s time to put them behind us! This election is not merely about getting the issues straight. This election is about uniting America."
As he did earlier in the day in New Mexico, Biden continued his attempt to tie Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., to President Bush by quoting the expression, "If it walks like a duck, if it talks like a duck, if it quacks like a duck, it’s a duck."
"Well baby, I think it’s a duck!" Biden exclaimed. "It’s an attempt to duck the reality, duck the reality that John McCain, on the critical issues of the day, is not fundamentally different than what the last eight years were."
The six-term senator also responded to a Wednesday debate comment by McCain in which the GOP nominee told Obama "I am not President Bush; if you wanted to run against President Bush, you should have run four years ago."
"Look, I know we’re not running against President Bush," Biden said. "But we’re running against the economic policies of President Bush, and in that sense, I can’t tell the difference between Bush and McCain!"
With Joe "The Plumber" Wurzelbacher still grabbing the post-debate media spotlight, Biden busted out a copy of Friday’s USA Today to read an article excerpt to the crowd.
"Let me read the first paragraph. It says, "It turns out Joe the Plumber, the unexpected focus of Wednesday night’s presidential debate, would likely get a tax cut if Barack Obama were president"," Biden said.
"Over the course of three debates, 20 months of campaigning, eight years of failed economic policy, there is not one fundamental economic issue on which John McCain has challenged the policies of George W. Bush," the Delaware lawmaker continued.
For the first time on the campaign trail – if not ever – parts of the audience complained that they couldn’t hear Biden.
"Can’t hear me?" Biden asked a section of the crowd set back behind a fence. "Sorry."
"Are you Democrats?" Biden quipped. "Alright, I’m joking, I’m joking, only a joke. I hope there are some Republicans here. We need you."
On Saturday, the Delaware lawmaker heads to San Francisco for a day of fundraising, followed by a trip to Seattle Sunday and a two-day Colorado bus tour on Tuesday and Wednesday.