Guy Benson

Two major Republican presidential candidates issued blistering statements earlier today, in response to Vice President Biden's jarring comments on China's inhumane one-child policy.  Mitt Romney unloaded in an email this morning:
 

"China's one-child policy is gruesome and barbaric.  Vice President Biden's acquiescence to such a policy should shock the conscience of every American.  Instead of condoning the policy, Vice President Biden should have condemned it in the strongest possible terms. There can be no defense of a government that engages in compulsory sterilization and forced abortions in the name of population control."


Rick Perry's campaign piled on:
 

“China’s one child policy has led to the great human tragedy of forced abortions throughout China, and Vice President Biden’s refusal to ‘second-guess’ this horrendous policy demonstrates great moral indifference on the part of the Obama Administration. Americans value life, and we deserve leaders who will stand up against such inhumanity, not cast a blind eye.”


Jon Huntsman, who served as US Ambassador to China, also denounced the policy Biden declined to "second guess" -- but characteristically pulled his punches against the Vice President himself:


“As an adoptive father, whose daughter was abandoned by her parents in China, Governor Huntsman is intimately familiar with the impact of China’s “one-child” policy,” Huntsman campaign spokesman Tim Miller told LifeNews. “As someone who is firmly pro-life, he feels the policy runs counter to the fundamental value of human life and is heartbroken by the destructive nature of the policy that has cost millions of lives.”


Biden's nonchalant acceptance of this macabre policy should draw opprobrium from across the political spectrum.  The only liberal I've seen explicitly condemn the remarks so far is Kirsten Powers, who I believe is pro-life.  Powers is chalking up the veep's comments to ignorance, urging Biden to "educate himself" on the subject.  Excuse me, but wasn't Joe Biden a mainstay on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for years?  Wasn't he added to the Obama ticket for his supposed foreign policy expertise?  If he didn't actually intend to affirm this dreadful policy, he absolutely should have known better than to say what he said.  Given his pedigree, there is no excuse.  Meanwhile, I'm trying to picture the magnitude of national outcry if, say, Vice President Nixon had met with Soviet Apparatchiks circa 1958, and had declared in passing that he "totally understood" the existence of gulags -- before proactively pledging not to "second guess" their necessity.  Imagine it.

I contacted the White House press office this afternoon, seeking an explanation or clarification of Biden's statement.  I was transferred to the Vice Presidential communications shop, where I was told they'd get back to me.  Stay tuned.


UPDATE - Video has emerged of Biden's disgraceful remarks:
 


Guy Benson

Guy Benson is Townhall.com's Senior Political Editor. Follow him on Twitter @guypbenson.

Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography