A day after President Obama rallied 9,300 students and faculty at North Carolina State University, Vice President Biden attended a Raleigh fundraiser, evidence that the Obama team intends to compete strongly in the Tar Heel state during the 2012 election.
Obama defeated John McCain by fewer than 14,000 votes in 2008, and polls show his support slipping among North Carolina residents. At N.C. State on Wednesday, the president gave an impassioned spech, calling on students to help him convince Congress to approve his $447 billion American Jobs Act.
Here is the White House press corps’ pool report on Biden’s visit Thursday as provided by Rob Christensen of the News & Observer newspaper in Raleigh:
Vice President Joe Biden spoke to about 60 people at a breakfast fundraiser Thursday morning at the West Raleigh home of John and Kristin Replogle. John Replogle is chief executive of Seventh Generation, a Vermont-based company that makes nontoxic household and personal care products.
The event cost a minimum of $5,000 per person.
Standing in the kitchen, Biden said such fundraisers will enable the Obama-Biden ticket to put together “the best ground operation in history.”
“That’s how we are going to win North Carolina,” Biden said.
Biden made a pitch for the presidents’ jobs progra, saying that despite improvements in the economy, many were still out of work, and struggling to pay their bills.
“All we want to do is get this vicious cycle and turn it into a virtuous cycle,” Biden said.
“We have to do something to jump-start this,” Biden said. “All the elements for the beginning of a genuine recovery are there. We are out of the recession, but that is not enough.
“What the president is trying to do with the jobs bill is to say to Republicans say, ‘This is not about ideology. We know it can help ordinary people now,’” he said. “Every single thing the president has put forward in that jobs bill is something a Republican president has supported in the past and the majority of the Republican elected officials have supported in the past. This is not ideologically laden.”
“We are prepared to negotiate with the Republicans,” Biden said.
But, Biden added, “we are not willing to negotiate no. We are not willing to negotiate standpat. We have had enough of this absolute recalcitrance.”