By Justin Sink
Vice President Biden will head to New Hampshire next week for an event on the economy that is certain to intensify speculation that he is readying a bid for the presidential nomination in 2016.
Biden will be joined at the Wednesday event in Portsmouth by members of Congress, the White House said in a statement.
The attendees at the event could include Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), who is locked in a tough reelection fight against former Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.). Shaheen did not meet with Biden during his last trip to the state, a fact that was highlighted by the state's GOP.
The vice president's trip comes as other possible presidential contenders also announced their intention to head to the early-voting state.
Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) will also visit Portsmouth for a Democratic fundraiser next month, his fourth visit to New Hampshire. And Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) announced Friday his third visit to the state this year, appearing alongside Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal at a GOP fundraiser.
During the vice president's last trip to the state — a visit to a Nashua job training site in March — he made reference to speculation about his possible run.
"The reason we're here, notwithstanding what others may think, is because you run the best outfit in the country," Biden told New Hampshire Gov. Maggie Hassan (D) at the event.
At an early stop at a local business that hires workers who have completed the state's job training initiative, the vice president told reporters he was "here about jobs, not mine."