LAS VEGAS — The race for president has tightened. And perhaps it has become uncomfortably close out west.
In Nevada, President Obama once held a lead as big as 9 points, according to some early polls. Recent polls show a closer race. Wednesday, an automated SurveyUSA poll had Obama leading Romney by three points in the state, 48 to 45. Last week, another survey showed Romney within two points of Obama.
In a three-city swing out West, Joe Biden has turned up the attack on Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan.
"They are not bad men, they are decent men, they are good fathers," Biden said of his opponents, but their vision for the country is "fundamentally different."
"Ryan has written a book called 'The Young Guns' with two other fellas, members of the House, Republican leaders in the House ... unfortunately the bullets are aimed at you," Biden said. In addition to the book, there is also a House GOP campaign effort and a super PAC using the "Young Guns" label. "These guys talk — they use phrases — I've never heard them before — 'We are a culture of dependency.' "
He then hit Romney the comment that 47 percent of Americans don't take personally responsibility. Romney has since said he misspoke, but Biden mentions the remark regularly, saying what a candidate says behind closed doors counts.
In a statement, Romney campaign spokesman Brendan Buck called Biden's comment about the Young Guns an example of "ugly political attacks beneath the dignity of the office he occupies."
Biden spokeswoman Amy Dudley responded that the comment "was clearly a reference to how the policies discussed in Paul Ryan’s book, 'Young Guns,' would devastate the middle class. Given that people don't assume that Paul Ryan is literally a gun, it probably makes sense not to assume that Joe Biden was speaking literally about bullets."