If Vice President Joseph R. Biden smiled too much during his debate Thursday night, the White House said the blame lies with Republican Rep. Paul Ryan and his position on the Obama administration’s 2009 stimulus plan.
Many viewers said Mr. Biden appeared condescending or arrogant by smiling and laughing while Mr. Ryan, the vice presidential nominee from Wisconsin, was speaking during their debate in Danville, Ky. But White House press secretary Jay Carney said Friday the vice president likely couldn’t help himself.
“When Congressman Ryan starts attacking the administration over the [stimulus bill] and the split-screen shows the vice president smiling, I can tell you, I can guess why he was smiling,” Mr. Carney said. “Because he knew how hypocritical that was, because he had seen the letters written by Congressman Ryan requesting [stimulus bill] funding, because it would help the economy in Wisconsin.”
Mr. Biden also appeared amused while Mr. Ryan was discussing Iran, Afghanistan and other national security issues.