Vice President Joe Biden: July 2011 Might Mean Just ‘a Few Thousand’ Troops Returning
Clarifies Earlier Quote on ‘Whole Lot of People’ Exiting; Responds to McChrystal Zingers
By JOSHUA MILLER
July 18, 2010— "As few as a couple thousand troops" could be returning home from America’s longest war at the July 2011 target for a "transition" in Afghanistan, Vice President Joe Biden told "This Week" in an exclusive interview.
Biden previously was quoted in Jonathan Alter’s new book, "The Promise," as saying, "In July of 2011 you’re going to see a whole lot of people moving out. Bet on it." …
So what did Biden mean when he said "a whole lot of people" would be "moving out" of Afghanistan? Tapper asked.
"What I was responding to was the idea that the president had been outmaneuvered," Biden said. "I was saying make it clear. And so it wasn’t so much numbers [that] I meant. It could be as few as a couple thousand troops. It could be more. But there will be a transition." …
Back tracking already.
Are we losing the war?
"It’s too early to make a judgment," Biden said. "We still believe that the policy that the military signed onto, put together initially, signed onto, is, in fact, going to work." …
Biden also responded to denigrating comments about him in a controversial Rolling Stone magazine interview with former Afghanistan commander Gen. Stanley McChrystal and his aides that ultimately cause McChrystal to lose his job…
However, Biden was magnanimous in his "This Week" interview.
"I didn’t take it personally at all," Biden said. "I really, honest to God, didn’t. Compared to what happens in politics, that was a piece of cake."
Biden added that he has met with a "really apologetic" McChrystal…
To many Democrats, their prospects this November are looking rather bleak. Respected congressional prognosticator Charlie Cook says that Democrats will lose 30 to 40 seats in the House and five to seven in the Senate…
But to Biden, things are looking up.
"I don’t think the [Democratic] losses are going to be bad at all," Biden said. "I think we’re going to shock the heck out of everybody…
"What I believe, what the president believes [is that] we’re going to win the House and we’re going to win the Senate. We’re not going to lose either one of those bodies," Biden said…
Stuffing the ballet box?
Asked if he thinks elements of the Tea Party are racist, Biden seemed to equivocate at first, but then settled on a firm no.
"Well, the truth is that at least elements that were involved in some of the Tea Party folks expressed racist views," he said.
And by “the truth” Mr. Biden means “the Democrat/media lie.”
"I wouldn’t characterize the Tea Party as racist," he added. "There are individuals who are either members of or on the periphery of some of their things — their protests — that have expressed really unfortunate comments.
"And, again, it was all over TV, all over your network, you know. A black congressman walking up the stairs of the Capitol," he said, referring to alleged racist epithets said to an African-American congressmen by alleged Tea Party members during the climax of the debate over health care reform.
"I don’t believe, the president [sic] doesn’t believe that the Tea Party is a racist organization. I don’t believe that," Biden said. "Very conservative. Very different views on government and a whole lot of things. But it is not a racist organization."
How magnanimous of him to admit this, after having effectively called them racists moments before.