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Barack Obama tells running mate Joe Biden to keep quiet

Tuesday, September 23rd 2008, 9:44 PM


Barack Obama wants Joe Biden (below) to show a little more restraint.

WASHINGTON - Barack Obama slapped his loose-lipped running mate Tuesday, chastising Joe Biden for speaking too fast and contradicting him on one of the massive financial bailouts.

Biden, a Delaware senator, declared last week the federal government should not have floated the American International Group an $85 billion lifeline.

Obama said the feds had no choice and hit John McCain for opposing the AIG rescue one day, then backing it the next.

Tuesday, Obama had to deal with fallout from Biden doing a similar dipsy-doodle, first denouncing then agreeing with McCain.

"I think that, in that situation, I think Joe should have waited as well," Obama said on NBC's "Today" show.

It's not the only Biden gaffe to make headlines lately.

In a CBS interview Monday, Biden called one of his own campaign ads "terrible" for mocking McCain's lack of e-mail ability. Biden later said it was okay.

In the same interview, he said McCain was not leading on the economic crisis, and to make his point cited a moment in history that never happened.

"When the stock market crashed, Franklin Roosevelt got on the television and didn't just talk about the princes of greed," Biden told Katie Couric.

The stock marked crashed in 1929 - three years before FDR got elected. And TVs were experimental.

Still, Obama defended his pick of Biden over Hillary Clinton.

"I am a great admirer of Sen. Clinton's," Obama said on NBC. "Joe Biden is also an outstanding public servant, and I am very proud of the choice that I made."

The GOP reveled in Biden's bobbles, sending out a list of recent alleged missteps.

"Joe Biden's bizarre comments underscore the lack of decisiveness and leadership represented at the top of the ticket," said Republican National Committee spokesman Danny Diaz, contending that Obama's "lack of experience and accomplishment is reflected in the confused comments by his running mate."

Biden spokesman David Wade fired back that the only lack of decisiveness was with McCain, who is calling for tougher rules on Wall Street after pushing deregulation for years.

"The only disagreement on this issue is between John McCain and John McCain," Wade said.

"It's John McCain's economic philosophy he once boasted about that got us deep into this mess, and that choice between philosophies is on the ballot this November," Wade said.

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