Biden 'Absolutely Comfortable' with Gay Marriage; Rubio Still Deflecting VP Talk

Joe Biden said he's "absolutely comfortable" with same-sex marriage on NBC's Meet the Press; Marco Rubio attacked the President's economic policies while deflecting questions over whether or not he'll accept a VP nomination. 

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Joe Biden appeared on NBC's Meet the Press on Sunday and endorsed gay marriage. Biden made sure to point out that “The President sets the policy," but that he is, "absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marrying men, women marrying women... are entitled the same exact rights, all the civil rights, all the civil liberties, and quite frankly, I don't see much of a distinction beyond that." Biden wouldn't say whether the President would support same-sex marriage in the next election, but listed some of the things President Obama has done for gay rights so far. Biden pointed to a change in the "social culture" for the public's evolving views on gay marriage.  “I think Will and Grace probably did more to educate the American public than almost anything anybody’s ever done so far,” Biden said. This was the furthest either the President or the VP has ever gone to support gay rights, and per Talking Points Memo, Obama advisor David Axelrod tweeted that the President has the same stance on gay marriage after the interview aired.

When asked about the disappointing jobs report released Friday, Biden said the economy was on a "steady path" to recovery, before clarifying that, "Look, this goes up and down.  But there's been a steady path --  26 months straight employment gain, private employment... But there's a lot more to do." He also said that, if elected, President Obama would let the Bush-era tax cuts expire. "There's no way to do anything other than hurt the middle class if we don't do that.," Biden said. "And this election, in our view, the big idea in this election is the middle class.  Will they begin to grow again?  And it's not-- look, we had this whole thesis, it seems to me, from the other side, that if you concentrate  more and more and more wealth and success in the very top, somehow something positive's gonna happen. We've always moved forward as a nation when the middle class grows.  When they grow, the poor have access and the wealthy get wealthier."

Marco Rubio appeared on Fox News Sunday and explained how he thinks Obama's economic policies are bad for small businesses. Rubio said the country's debt creates, "tremendous worry about the future," and that “uncertainty about the tax code," didn't help either. He said the "regulatory environment" of the Obama administration hurts small businesses and that, "just the health care law alone is an endless stream of regulations that scare people." He said small businesses are afraid to hire because they have "no idea" how much health care reform will cost. He also continued to deflect questions over whether he'll accept a VP nomination. “I’m not going to discuss the vice presidency,” he told host Chris Wallace. Wallace said that if Romney were to ask him directly to be his Vice President, then it'd be an offer he couldn't refuse. "You're not going to say no to that," Wallace said. “I knew you were going to try that one more time," Rubio replied.

Newt Gingrich appeared on CNN's State of the Union and called Obama's campaign launch "an absurdity" and attacked the President's economic record so far. He went on to dance around saying he endorses Mitt, but he did say that Mitt has "earned the right to represent the Republican Party," and said he believed Romney would be a dramatically better president than Barack Obama. Gingrich used clearer language when he appeared on CBS's Face the Nation and said, “As far as I’m concerned, I’ve endorsed him... I’m going to campaign for him, I favor him over Obama.” He also said it was "inconceivable" that Romney would pick him for Vice President. “Would you pick me as a vice presidential nominee?” he asked host Bob Schieffer.

Gingrich's appearance on CNN can be seen here:

And his appearance on CBS can seen here:

President Obama also got a vote of confidence from former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland who said the President is "pretty well positioned" to win Ohio. Strickland appeared on CNN's State of the Union with former Virginia Rep. Tom Davis to talk about the battle for their former states in the next election. Strickland said Obama's "saving of the auto industry is a big deal for Ohio,” but went on to clarify that, "No candidate and no party can ever take Ohio for granted," and that, “It’s always close in Ohio.”

David Axelrod appeared on ABC's This Week with George Stephanopoulos and responded to criticisms that the president was "spiking the ball" when it comes to his use of Osama bin Laden's assassination in campaign materials. “Well, first of all, the president hasn’t been spiking the ball.  This was the one-year anniversary.  It’s part of his record.  And it’s certainly a legitimate part of his record to talk about,” Axelrod said. He also criticized Mitt Romney for his remarks about the Obama administration's handling of the Chen Guangcheng. "I think what's shameful is when presidential candidates are so craven to score political points that they speak irresponsibly on half information at a time when the president is trying, and the administration is trying, to resolve a situation that is very, very sensitive and very difficult," he said. "We want to help Mr. Chen achieve his goal, which is to come here, and we want to do it in accordance with our values...  But it doesn’t help to have candidates blunderbussing around, trying to score political points, when we’re in the middle of that process."

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.