Virginia Business Owner Shuns Biden Over Obama’s 'You Didn't Build That' Remarks

 @LauraMatt
on August 16 2012 12:13 PM

A small business owner in Virginia shunned an advance team for Vice President Joe Biden Wednesday, not for recent comments Biden made that Republican policies would put Americans "back in chains" but because of President Barack Obama's "you didn't build that" statement.

Chris McMurray, owner of the three-month-old bakery Crumb and Get It, told WDBJ7 that though it was "an opportunity of a lifetime" to have Biden in his establishment, he just had to turn him down.

Biden and his team had selected the mom-and-pop store as a stop-off point while en route to Blacksburg, Virginia, but were declined. They eventually had to make the stop elsewhere.

"Essentially I said 'no offense to you or the campaign but I just decline you guys coming in here,'" McMurray said.

He further explained that Obama's recent comment on small businesses and who actually built them was an issue for him.

"Very simple, 'you didn't build that.' Speaking of small businesses and entrepreneurs all over the country," McMurray told the TV station. "Last night my wife was up all night long. [She] did not sleep. She has worked a full 24 hours." (Watch McMurray's interview.)

Mitt Romney and other Republicans have pounced on Obama's "you didn't build that" line since it was said in Roanoke, Va., last month, basically saying it's an affront to people who created businesses.

But others have argued that Obama's words were taken out of context. Obama told the Roanoke crowd that there are a lot of hardworking people in the nation and later added: "If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you've got a business, you didn't build that. Somebody else made that happen."

That Biden's team was turned away for Obama's comment may surprise some, especially in light of the fact that the vice president found himself back in the spotlight this week.

Obama had to come to Biden's defense earlier this week after his second-in-command was criticized for lashing out against Republican, saying their policies would put middle-income Americans "back in chains."

Some have said Biden's comment has a racial undertone and have called it demeaning.

Romney's vice presidential pick Paul Ryan told Fox News' Sean Hannity that Biden's remarks are things said when "you're desperate in a campaign."

"I think you're going to hear more of these things as we go on because they have a terrible record and can't run on it so they're going to kind of sink this campaign to these low levels to distract people," Ryan said. "To try and you know, stoke the emotions of fear and envy, and it's just not going to work. People are going to see through this. We've gone from hope and change to anger and division and blame and attack and I think people are going to see through this."

Santita Jackson, daughter of Jesse Jackson, also told Hannity that she found Biden's chains remarks "profoundly insulting."

"It's one thing to become familial. It's another thing to become familiar. And familiarity breeds contempt. And, this is very, very close to being contemptuous. These remarks were insulting. Not only does he need to dial them back, he needs to apologize," said Jakcson, who is black. 

Obama told People magazine Wednesday that Biden only meant that consumers would be worse off if Republicans repeal Wall Street reforms.

"In no sense was he trying to connote something other than that," Obama said.

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