Biden's 'Shorthand' for First Term: 'Osama bin Laden Dead, General Motors Alive'

Fred Comegys/The Wilmington News-Journal/AP Photo

Vice President Joe Biden today told a crowd of re-election campaign donors on Ft. Worth, Texas, that the best way to sum up President Obama's first term in "shorthand" is with nine succinct words: "Osama bin Laden is dead and General Motors is alive."

The comment came at the end of 40-minute speech during which Biden outlined the administration's economic agenda and vision for a second term and rattled off a lengthy, sometimes rambling litany of accomplishments since 2009, according to the print pool reporter in the room.

"So folks, the best way to sum up I think where we are today - when I was asked the other day, someone gave me this line. The best way to sum up the job that President Obama has done - and by the way, he committed we'd be out of Iraq. We are out of Iraq, completely out of Iraq," he said. "But the best way to sum up the job the President has done if you need a real shorthand: Osama bin Laden is dead and General Motors is alive."

The Obama campaign has made the killing of bin Laden a signature foreign policy and national security talking point and has increasingly sought to promote the resurgence of the American auto industry in the wake of an Obama-backed, government-funded bailout as a heroic move.

Today marked the first time a campaign figure boiled down those two points to a "shorthand" phrase.

Biden ended his remarks with a nod to general election politics, insisting the coming campaign will require voters to weigh a clear, contrasting choice.

Obama "will be measured against a guy named Romney or Gingrich or whoever," Biden said.  "For the first time, the Republicans are not hiding the ball. … They are saying what they believe, God love them. They are not even pretending."

"This is going to be one heck of a race," he said.