MSNBC "Morning Joe"- Transcript
MR. SCARBOROUGH: Senator, when you said that Republicans weren't used to smart people being around them, were you talking specifically about the Republicans that voted for me in primary elections?
SEN. BIDEN: Oh, Joe --
MR. SCARBOROUGH: I kind of took it as a personal attack.
MS. BRZEZINSKI: Don't make him say that.
SEN. BIDEN: Joe, anybody who voted for you is smart as can be. I was obviously making -- poking a little fun here, but you know the truth of the matter is that it's amazing how the very people, Joe, who, in fact, were the ones that John McCain deplored in his 2000 primary race in South Carolina, the very race where I called him up when they attacked his character, I said, John, where do you want me? I'll publicly testify for you. These very people, some of them John has now hired and they're running his attack ads on television against Barack, misrepresenting Barack. And independent news organizations are saying it; not Joe Biden and the point I was responding to is the misrepresentation that's going on about Barack Obama.
MR. SCARBOROUGH: I think it's safe to say there are a lot of McCain people that know the man that, no, he's not really comfortable with what's going on right now.
Explain to America the difference between running for U.S. senator and running for Vice President of the United States. You've said a couple of things self-deprecating to get the audience sort of to laugh. You talked about Hillary Clinton being a better vice presidential nominee than yourself. You talked about Sarah Palin being --
MS. BRZEZINSKI: Good looking.
MR. SCARBOROUGH: Good looking, but it was like, hey, compared to me, she's good looking. That's what you can do in a race and get everybody laughing at you, but on this stage it gets cut up and turned around, doesn't it?
SEN. BIDEN: Well, look, it does, but it was even worse than that. A woman my age yelled at me and said you're good looking, senator, and I said, no, I said Sarah Palin is good looking and that was the context. But it doesn't matter. The point you make is everything you say gets sliced and diced and now, look, that's part of the game and, hopefully, I don't say too many things that, in fact, are able to be taken out of context, although Joe I'm fully capable of it.
MR. SCARBOROUGH: Oh, come on, senator.
MS. BRZEZINSKI: Now, senator, the Republicans want you to release your earmark list. Are you going to do that?
SEN. BIDEN: Yeah, I have released the earmark. They said I love this earmark thing, don't you? Look, John is going to balance the $400 billion deficit this administration is going to leave the next president for one year and he's going to do it by earmarks. Take every single solitary earmark out; it's $18 billion of real money, but it doesn't balance the budget. At the same time, John thinks that he's going to add $300 billion a year in tax cuts on top of the tax here that exists for corporations and people making over $250,000 a year and the middle class, once again, in the neighborhoods we grew up in, Joe, the middle class is going to stay there holding the stick, man.
I mean -- I don't get this. I don't understand why, you know, John is a real Navy man and he's real. We ought to stand by the old rule, man. If you're the captain of a ship and it goes up on the rocks, you're responsible. Who has been in charge the last eight years, man? Who has been in charge with this policy?
MR. SCARBOROUGH: And that ship is up on the rocks.
MS. BRZEZINSKI: Yeah.
SEN. BIDEN: It is on the rocks right now.
MS. BRZEZINSKI: Definitely on the rocks. Senator, I'm curious, how would you characterize your counterpart, your opponent, Sarah Palin? And are you doing anything different to prepare for the debates?
SEN. BIDEN: I wouldn't characterize her, number one, and I won't characterize her.
MS. BRZEZINSKI: You know better.
MR. SCARBOROUGH: Smart move.
MS. BRZEZINSKI: Very good. That was my Charlie Gibson trick question.
SEN. BIDEN: Well, I'm slow, I'm slow. But even I get it once in a while. But look, the truth of the matter is I honest to goodness don't know Sarah Palin. I don't know what her record is. I hear all these things, some of which apparently panned out to be true and some not true. I don't know what -- I assume her positions are the same as John McCain's. I assume that on the major issues that affect whether or not people are going to be able to keep their job, keep their home and be able to send their kid to college, I assume that all those things that people talk about the American dream are views that she has are the same as John, and until it's shown otherwise, I will go in that debate and I'll debate the McCain-Palin policies and how they're going to help us or not and the Obama-Biden policies.
Mika, I have shared your view. I think family should be flat off record. You've never heard once in my career ever me attack anyone based on anything that --
MR. SCARBOROUGH: Exactly.
SEN. BIDEN: Look, you know, by the way, every one of us and every one of our families, there is something out there that you wouldn't want posted in the public view. That is irrelevant to whether or not you can lead. But what is relevant is what are they going to do about the fact that this economy is in trouble? And you know John, God love him, keeps talking about the American worker. Well, the American worker -- I have no doubt about the American worker. What I have a doubt about is what the government has done to make it difficult for the American worker.
MR. SCARBOROUGH: And Murphy, do you want to say hi to --
MR. MURPHY: Hi, senator, Mike Murphy on the gang --
SEN. BIDEN: Mike Murphy, how are you? Here we go.
MR. MURPHY: I got to ask you a politician question. No, no, no, it's not too bad.
MS. BRZEZINSKI: We're in trouble.
MR. MURPHY: We had fun this morning with the flat rock tape and I felt for you because you were on stage and they brought out the local slugger there and did the bucket of fluff line and I could see you walking away and turning your back -- who was that? Who was the local there?
MS. BRZEZINSKI: What the heck?
MR. MURPHY: That was your comment and I won't hold you accountable for that one.
SEN. BIDEN: No. No. It was a woman who lost her job and I met her for the first time and she feels very passionate about the state of affairs out there.
MR. SCARBOROUGH: I bet she does. I'm sure it's very personal to her and kudos to you. Here he goes, Senator Biden turning his back and walking out of the camera. That was a good move.
All right. Senator Biden, we love you. Thanks so much for being with us.
SEN. BIDEN: Well, thanks for having me. Thanks for having me.
MR. SCARBOROUGH: And good luck out there.
SEN. BIDEN: Thanks an awful lot, Joe.