Vice President Joe Biden, the man behind the so-called "Biden Rule" that says presidents should not nominate in the last year of their term, says he's never seen Washington the way it is now. Biden, speaking before the law school at Georgetown University, said that there is no "Biden Rule" -- there is only the Constitution.
Republicans have been pointing to comments Biden made about not confirming candidates in the final year of a presidency. Biden made comments to that effect in 1992, an election year when George H.W. Bush was seeking re-election. There was no Supreme Court vacancy that year but it didn't stop Biden from speculating. Now he says, though, Republicans are taking him out of context.
"I was speaking of the dangers of nominating an extreme candidate," Biden told the law school audience.
More recently than Biden's 1992 comments, President Obama spoke out while he was a senator about blocking Supreme Court nominees. When Samuel Alito was nominated to the court, Obama claimed the Senate had a greater duty than simply approving a nominee and the call to assist meant rejecting nominees.