Vice President Joe Biden took the stage at The Depot in downtown Minneapolis just after 1 p.m. Tuesday, telling the crowd of 1,500, "My name is Joe Biden and I work for Amy Klobuchar."
Biden is in Minnesota for a pair of campaign stops set for Tuesday, and he followed up his Minneapolis stop with a trip south to Rochester, Minn.
The vice president wasted no time touting the Obama administration's Affordable Care Act.
"It's one of the reasons I am damn proud to be vice president for President Barack Obama," Biden said.
Soon, however, he took aim at Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan, warning that the Republican ticket is not a good choice for America.
"These guys aren't hiding the ball," Biden said of the Romney/Ryan ticket. "They're telling us exactly what they think. It's not new, fair, or right. We've seen this movie before and know how it ends. It ends with a recession. We must move forward. We cannot go back."
Biden brought some pretty strong rhetoric with him on his campaign stops, and it seems he could become the attack dog for Democrats. Even die-hard party members held their breath a bit when Biden took to the podium to deliver a disciplined defense of the last four years.
"Osama bin Laden is dead. GM is alive," he said.
Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak and Sen. Amy Klobuchar gave the opening remarks at Tuesday's rally. Gov. Mark Dayton was not in attendance. An Obama campaign spokesperson says the governor was not feeling well.
The Obama campaign said the final attendance for Tuesday's Minneapolis rally was 1,556 people.
In the intimate setting at Mac's Cafe in Rochester, Biden played up his Scranton roots and told attendees that Democrats are the ones who are looking out for the middle class. For many, the message resonated.
Although Rochester is a city that seems to be built around health care, Biden didn't say much about the administration's signature achievement there -- perhaps because he figured he didn't have to.
Biden also squeezed in a surprise visit at the football practice at Minneapolis South High School, answering a tough question from one player and sharing stories about his football-playing days. He even completed a pass before moving on.
Biden left Minnesota without leaving any blunders behind, making it a short and successful stop with a simple mission: rally the faithful and make sure they vote 11 weeks from today.
The message was a familiar one, as the Obama-Biden administration repeats that building the economy can only be done from the "middle-out" approach instead of "top-down." The plan to achieve that goal still involves raising taxes on the wealthy to help the growing number of poor.
"Where I come from, nothing is gutsy about giving millionaires a tax break," Biden told his audience on Tuesday.
It's the opposite of the Romney-Ryan plan, which calls for tax cuts to top-earners to get companies to hire again, as well as decreasing the size and power of the federal government.
"What Gov. Romney is saying is absolutely wrong," President Barack Obama said of Romney's economic approach. "Not only are his SuperPACs running millions of ads making this claim, Gov. Romney is approving it himself and he's saying it on the stump. So, the contrast is pretty stark. They can run the campaign they want, but the truth of the matter is you can't just make stuff up."
Romney is staying the course despite the criticism, saying, 'We're not going to raise taxes that slows down growth and kills jobs. We're going to get this economy going and Mr. President, stop saying something that's not the truth."
Mitt Romney will be in Minnesota on Thursday to two fundraisers, but no public events are planned. Voters say they do hope he will make a surprise stop at the Minnesota State Fair on its opening day.