Last year, the Bidens reported an income of $379,035. The Ryans weren’t far behind, with $323,416 in reported income for 2011. Mitt Romney recently said he considers “Middle Class” to be anyone making $200,000 – 250,000. However, the Census Bureau reported this week that the median household income in the nation is just over $50,000. Even the broadest definition of Middle Class — $30,000 to $99,000 in annual household income — would put both #2s far outside this realm.
It’s interesting, then, that both men running for the second office in the land would be the champions of the Middle Class on the ticket. Compared to the $789,674 that the Obamas brought in last year and the $20.9 million the Romneys made, Biden and Ryan’s income is certainly closer to the Middle Class bracket.
Joe Biden’s Middle Class Connection
Joe Biden’s father had been very well-off earlier in life, but suffered financial hardship by the time Joe was born. For a while, he lived with his maternal grandparents in Scranton, Pennsylvania. Biden’s father struggled to find work, but eventually landed a middle-class position as a used car salesman. Biden admits he’s “not a Middle Class Joe anymore,” but contends that the Democrats are more consistently in-tune with the needs of middle earners.
“I found it fascinating how the new Republican Party discovered the middle class at the convention. It was like, ‘Eureka.’ My dad would say to us, ‘Don’t tell me your values, show me your budget. I will tell you what you value.”
Paul Ryan’s Middle Class Connection
Paul Ryan was born in Janesville, Wisconsin to Betty Hutter and lawyer Paul Murray Ryan. When Ryan was just 16 years old, his father died of a heart attack at 55. Despite receiving enough survivor’s benefits to put himself through college, Ryan still worked odd jobs — cooking at McDonald’s, promoting Oscar Meyer Lunchables, serving drinks at the Tortilla Coast restaurant, and training fitness clients at the Washington Sport and Health Club. In other words, he’s no stranger to hard work!
“We are kindred spirits. I come from Southern Wisconsin, corn and soy bean country. I mean you drive five miles that way it looks like five miles from my house. We need to grow more food, make more things, sell them to other countries. That is how we make jobs. We need trade agreements that are fair, that hold people to account, but that help us make and grow things and sell them overseas. That is critical for jobs in Iowa, and critical for jobs in America.”
Upcoming Stops on the Middle Class Tour
Biden and Ryan are zeroing-in on the same battleground states, often times making their pitches to the Middle Class in the same town on the same day! Today Biden will speak at the Port of Burlington, Iowa — where unemployment has been higher than state average. Ryan will stump in downtown Des Moines, Iowa to discuss government spending and debt. Polling shows Obama-Biden with a very narrow 45-44.8 lead over Romney-Ryan.
Biden’s introduction comes from a 55-year-old Champion Spark Plug worker who will speak about how the auto industry bail-out saved his career and enabled the company he works for to create 100 additional jobs. Biden will also attack Romney-Ryan on Medicare. Tomorrow, Biden will hold rallies in Ottumwa and college town Grinnell — two Democratic strongholds, where their party has won bu a margin of at least 20 percent in the last 4 elections.
Last week, both Biden and Ryan toured the swing state of Ohio. Biden held a rally at Wright State University and met up with bikers at Cruisers Diner in Seaman, Ohio, where the AP snapped this gem of a photo:
Ryan visited local favorite, The Hot Dog Shoppe, in Warren, Ohio where he sat down with Yahoo! reporter Chris Moody and a couple of locals to talk Medicare. He was caught chowing down by Hugh Hewitt:
Ryan Appeals To Middle Class Voters By…
- Proposing tax cuts across the board that will affect the middle class
- Addressing the “fiscal cliff” we’re about to fall off if something isn’t done about the nation’s debt
- Rolling out a plan that would add an estimated 12 million new middle class jobs in 4 years
Biden Appeals To The Middle Class By…
- Fighting to make college tuition more affordable for the average American and give out more grants
- Promoting health care law that saved seniors on Medicare $160 in premiums and copays
- Forging new partnerships between colleges and businesses to create 2 million skilled job placements