CANTON, Ohio - As President Obama and Mitt Romney head into their final debate Monday night, Vice President Joe Biden said in Ohio that the country might at last be witnessing the reconstruction of the Romney platform that his campaign hinted at last spring.
“His plans aren’t sketchy, they’re Etch A Sketchy. They’re like shaking that little tablet out there,” Biden said at the J. Babe Stearn Community Center Monday. “It’s under way guys. We are seeing the remaking of Mitt Romney right before our eyes.”
Tune in to ABC News.com tonight at 8 p.m. ET for anchored coverage of the final presidential debate, at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Fla.
Democrats and rival Republicans quickly pounced on Romney’s team last March when senior adviser Eric Fehrnstrom suggested the campaign could reset itself “like an Etch A Sketch” in the general election. Romney, who was then a contender in the Republican primary contest, “walked back” his adviser’s comments, telling reporters that while the campaign may restructure itself “organizationally,” the issues he’d be running on would be exactly the same.”
Biden has continued that line of attack in the days since the second presidential debate last Tuesday, and has stressed that the former Massachusetts governor and his running mate, Rep. Paul Ryan, have failed to provide the country with specifics about their plans, and suggested that the GOP ticket didn’t even know what their plans entailed.
“They talk about our debt. They talk about our problems. How do you justify that? And on top of that, Romney has been running on a $5 trillion tax cut, which would give another hundred, $250,000 a year, to those same 120,000 families. And this guy says he cares about the middle class? He also says when asked how he’s going to pay for it … it’s revenue-neutral. That’s Washington-speak for ‘I don’t know,’” Biden said.
Biden has embarked on a three-day swing through Ohio as both sides engage in a hard-fought contest in this battleground state, which could determine the outcome of the presidential election.
“Through a lot of hard work, early voting sites in Ohio will be open for extended hours and that means you can go in and vote any time between 8 and 7 p.m., and the sooner you vote the better the momentum, so folks, go vote,” Biden said.
“Folks, we need you. Together we can win Ohio, and when we win Ohio, we win this election,” he said later.
With the third presidential debate on deck tonight, remnants of previous debates have made their way into the voter lexicon. At Biden’s rallies in the past week, voters shouted “malarkey” as the vice president talked about Romney’s positions, channeling Biden’s performance in his debate against Paul Ryan.
“Under this territorial tax law, the only tax that country will ever have to pay is what they pay in that country, and they can bring all the profits home made by cheap labor, the Bain way, they can bring them all home and never have to pay American taxes,” Biden said as a man shouted “Malarkey!”
“By the way, that’s more than malarkey. That’s deadly,” Biden said.
And the crowd pre-empted Biden with chants of “Romnesia,” a term coined by President Obama after the second presidential debate at Hofstra University.
“All of a sudden, Romney claims that he doesn’t have a $5 trillion tax cut,” Biden said as the crowd started to chant “Romnesia!”
“Now the president has a new term for it. What is it? Romnesia! I tell you man. And by the way, guess what? It’s contagious!” he said.