Vice President Joe Biden told a crowd Saturday that "Romnesia" is spreading to Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan, while supporters cheered "four more years!"
"I am so excited about him after watching that vice presidential debate. He’s my hero now, so I want to be here to support him," St. Augustine resident Kathy Haines told Channel 4's Kent Justice.
"That’s uncle Joe! He’s going to say something funny, I want to hear it. I want to be there. He always gives us something," said Lenny Boone, of Palm Coast.
Biden began telling the crowd about the new word President Barack Obama used the day before to describe what he calls Republican Mitt Romney's changing polices. In anticipation, several of the 950 supporters packed into the Ketterlinus Gym began shouting "Romnesia!"
"That man is contagious. Congressman Ryan caught it as well," Biden said to loud cheers.
He said the Wisconsin Congressman is now giving a new explanation for cuts in the budget he oversaw and passed in the House.
"He says we don't cut the budget, we just slow the growth of the budget. Well, tell that to all those folks on Medicare. Tell that to all those folks on Medicaid," Biden said. "Congressman Ryan saying that his budget doesn't decimate Medicare, eviscerate education, that's like Mitt Romney standing in an unemployment line and turning to a guy and saying, 'You know what? I didn't outsource your job, I just offshored it.'"
Biden attacked the Romney/Ryan ticket as not supporting women's issues and favoring economic and tax policies that favor the rich and not the middle class, a top-down position that he said has failed in the past.
He even invoked Republican President Ronald Reagan to make his case.
"I served with Ronald Reagan. Ronald Reagan said he did not think that a millionaire should pay at a lower (tax) rate than a bus driver paid. What happened to the Republican Party?" Biden said. "That's not some liberal idea, that was Ronald Reagan."
"What's really important is that they talk about how many lies are being told, and that a president sticks to what he says and be an honest person. Have manners, not bully people and knock them down," said St. Augustine resident Maureen Loliva.
Earlier in the day, Biden stopped at an Orlando campaign office and met with volunteers.
"We wanted to come to the epicenter of the epicenter, man," he said. "Florida, you guys produce, we win Florida. We win Florida, this is all history, man."
"It all comes down to turnout. At the end of the day, when people make their choices, if they don't come out and vote it means nothing. So get everybody excited, get them fired up!" Lenny Boone told Channel 4.
Both campaigns are targeting Florida and its 29 electoral votes — the most of any tossup state. It was the second day of a two-day Florida swing for Biden, which overlapped a two-day swing by Ryan, who appeared with Mitt Romney in Daytona Beach on Friday night. Romney's wife, Ann, was also in Florida on Saturday, and first lady Michelle Obama planned a visit Monday ahead of the presidential debate that night in Boca Raton. The president is planning at least two days of campaigning in Florida after the debate.
This trip was the ninth Biden has made to Florida this year and the 24th since becoming vice president.
He spoke for nearly 40 minutes in St. Augustine, ending the event by telling the crowd, "When we take Florida, this election is over."