(ST. JOSEPH, MO.) - Joe Biden told supporters today that John McCain did not have a "steady hand" in leading America through economic crisis and attacked his campaign's negative advertising toward Barack Obama.
"Look, folks. Don't be distracted. These attacks don't hurt Barack Obama and me. What they hurt is you, and your fellow Americans. Every single false charge, every baseless accusation is an attempt to get you to stop paying attention to what's going on in this country and what's going on in your lives," said Biden.
Biden spoke in a gymnasium with several hundred supporters, and said his goal to ending the economic crisis would be bringing back some of the 70,000 jobs lost in Missouri during the last eight years.
"All of the things they said about Barack Obama…on the TV, at their rallies, and now on YouTube, and everything else they're doing before the debate, all the things they're saying after the debate as recently as this morning, John McCain could not bring himself to look Barack Obama in the eye and say the same things to him," said Biden.
However, Barack Obama himself kept mum during his town hall debate with McCain when it came to attacks his campaign has made against McCain's character.
Obama did not mention the recent 13-minute documentary the Obama campaign posted on YouTube, which brought attention to McCain's involvement in the Keating Five savings and loan scandal, during which McCain was criticized by a Senate committee as having "poor judgement" accepting contributions from Charles Keating, a real estate speculator.
The Obama campaign said their acknowledgement of McCain's role in the Keating Five scandal was a "direct response" to attacks on Barack Obama for his association to radical activist Bill Ayers of the Weather Underground, a group which was accused of domestic terrorism in the late 1960s and early '70s.
Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., introduced Biden, calling the McCain campaign's tactics "petty, small and personal."
"The oldest trick in their playbook, they've gone to it time and time again, the politics of fear and smear," said McCaskill. "Now they want America to be afraid of this inspirational, smart, strong, humble patriot. God-loving family man. That's what they want?"
She argued that Americans should instead "be afraid of four more years of Bush economics."
Biden continues a two-day trip through Missouri, making several campaign stops before flying to Chicago for a fundraising event tomorrow evening.