Biden: 'I promise you the president has a big stick,' Gov. Romney apparently doesn't

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It was the most direct and specific rebuttal of Romney to date by the Obama administration, reflecting the intensity of the general election campaign that is now fully underway.

“If you are looking for a bumper sticker to sum up how President Obama has handled what we inherited, it’s pretty simple: Osama bin Laden is dead and General Motors is alive,” said Biden.

Rather than speak generally about Romney or the Republican agenda, Biden spent most of his address at New York University – the fifth in a series of campaign speeches he is giving – quoting statements by Romney from years past and then refuting each one line by line.

“Without question, our number one geopolitical foe is Russia,” Biden said, quoting a comment Romney made in March while criticizing Obama.

The vice president paused to let the audience laugh before continuing.

“As my brother would say, ‘Go figure,’” Biden said, accusing Romney of a Cold War mentality that viewed foreign policy through a rear view mirror. Bin Laden and Obama’s successes in combating terrorism were front and center and Biden emphasized the administration’s largest foreign policy accomplishments.

“This guy’s got a backbone like a ramrod. No, no, for real,” Biden said, describing the decision to send Navy SEALs after bin Laden in Pakistan. “We can’t say for certain what Gov. Romney would have done.”

“I promise you the president has a big stick. I promise you,” Biden said later, in a reference to former President Roosevelt that left his audience giggling awkwardly.

Biden said it was unclear what Romney would do with the nation’s foreign policy if elected president, but that he clearly would start with “a profound misunderstanding of the responsibilities of the president and a commander in chief.” He pointed to Romney’s comments about the need for crippling sanctions against Iran, noting that such sanctions have already been put in place and have been effectively curtailing Iran’s flexibility.

For more on Biden's remarks, click here.