During Obama's two presidential campaigns, Vice President Biden often played the role of the administration's approachable average American, and it doesn't seem like he's going to give that up anytime soon.
The Veep stopped by the grand opening of Washington, D.C.'s first-ever Costco store Thursday morning, and it seemed like he really got into the quintessential Costco experience. (Well, plus cameras, reporters and lots of gawking fellow shoppers.)
Per the White House press pool:
He did a loop of nearly the entire store, including bakery and frozen foods. But Biden turned down the employees who were trying to lure him to the tire department.
"Hey man I don't need tires," he said. "I don't drive anymore."
Biden also availed himself of several Costco food samples, and looked like he enjoyed them.
Who doesn't love the Costco food samples?
Happy shopper VP Biden's visit to Costco: He had a cart filled with childrens' books, fire logs, a 32 inch Panasonic tv and a big apple pie.— Nick Harper (@NickHarperFSN) November 29, 2012
The report also noted that Biden and his wife Jill are members of the wholesale giant:
The Bidens have been Costco members in the past. The Vice President and Dr. Biden’s Costco memberships were re-activated yesterday; they paid the $55 membership re-activation fee to receive their new cards. The Vice President received his own card which he is carrying today while shopping at Costco.
Biden flashed his membership card as he walked in, and told the crowd it was his.
"In all honesty, I didn't have my own card, Jill wouldn't let me have one," he said. "I went to get my wife's card, and she said, 'No, No, get your own card.' "
He spent some time in the children's book area, looking quickly at the books before dropping at least a dozen in his cart. He told reporters they were bound for a Delaware charity that his wife, Jill, had started, and that he was picking titles based on "things I know my grand kids like."
More from the pool report:
The Vice President will be greeted at Costco by CEO Craig Jelinek and Co-founder Jim Sinegal, who were both at Costco's grand opening ceremony this morning.
VP Biden engaged in an extended Costco shopping spree, to the delight of shoppers and employees at the store, which just opened its doors to the public today.
He flashed his Costco card as he walked through the doors to loud cheers. Employee Ivey Stewart handled a cart for Biden, who stopped frequently for hugs and photos. Asked about whether he was optimistic about fiscal cliff negotiations, he said "I am."
VP stopping to talk to reporters after wheeling a cart filled w among other things, children's books, fire logs, a 32-inch Panasonic TV and a big apple pie to the registers. He called on congress to extend bush era middle class tax cuts, saying that "consumer confidence is growing, the last thing we need to do is dash that."
Biden stood with his cart -- some of the items were loaded into a box that once carried Jack Daniels, the TV was riding on the bottom of the cart -- and joked, "now you know why my wife doesn't let me shop alone."
He said that he'd talked to people around the store as that "all the people you meet and see... Folks don't need to see their taxes go up." He said "it's important congress acts now, right now."
Unknown if he bought a watch, though he spent considerable time at the counter looking at them, including a $1,200 one, and put in a call to his daughter, Ashley, saying he needed to "get some guidance."
The Vice President bought a watch that will be a gift. It was not the $1200 watch.
Before leaving, he placed a call on Ivey Stewart's phone. Couldn't hear what he said, but she broke into tears and got a vice presidential hand on the shoulder and a hug.
The store was clogged w shoppers who whipped out cells and iPhones to snap the VP. There were lots if Delaware natives in the store who got giant Biden hugs and handshakes.