by Keith Laing, The Hill Newspaper
Republican vice presidential nominee Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) sought to counter Democratic attacks on GOP nominee Mitt Romney’s opposition to the Obama administration’s bailout of the U.S. auto industry during his heated debate Thursday with Vice President Biden.
Ryan accused Democrats of “misquoting” Romney after Biden brought up a widely read op-ed the former Massachusetts wrote in The New York Times in 2008 titled “Let Detroit Go Bankrupt.”
“He talks about Detroit. Mitt Romney’s a car guy. They keep misquoting him, but let me tell you about the Mitt Romney I know,” said Ryan.
Ryan then noted Romney’s generosity, as well as his charitable donations.
Democrats said Wednesday that they expected Biden to hit Ryan over Romney’s criticism of the auto bailout, which the administration believes has helped Obama in several states, notably Michigan and Ohio. Obama was criticized by some Democrats for not discussing the issue enough in his debate with Mitt Romney last week.
“We knew we had to act for the middle class,” Biden said of the bailout during the debate. “We immediately went out and rescued General Motors. We went ahead and made sure that we cut taxes for the middle class. And in addition to that, when that — when that occurred, what did Romney do? Romney said, “No, let Detroit go bankrupt.”
There was little other transportation talk between Biden and Ryan in Wednesday’s debate, though industry observers said earlier Wednesday that they did not expect either man to delve into the topic much more than the principles they were standing in for.