HOST: “I want to ask you about something you have been criticized for lately, and that is, sometimes you put your foot in your mouth. You knew what I was going to say before I even asked the question. And I was out with you last week in South Carolina, speaking to a lot of voters at your rally. And I will say most of your supporters that I’ve talked to, they don’t seem to mind. They say it just happens to all of us, we all put a foot in our mouth. Do you not feel that the details, not just the intentions matter when you’re making decisions as president?”

BIDEN: “Well, there are two fundamentally different questions you’re asking me. When I stand, and you guys love to conflate these things, number one, it’s I stood up and talked about pinning a medal on a young man who did not want the medal, who was a brave, brave young man. I also talked about, up in Upper Valley, of another young man who engaged in a brave act. Turns out General Rodriguez was up in what they call forward-operating base with only six or eight people up there, and he pinned the Bronze Star on the young man up there. It wasn’t the young man who got the Medal of Honor from the President who in fact was in a different place — that was in Afghanistan, but not where I was. So the fact that the whole purpose of what I was saying did not in any way affect my point, they’re incredibly brave, decent and honorable men and women in the military, who in fact are like any other generation and they even have done more. They’ve saddled up, they’ve gone out, they’ve wiped the blood off these Humvees, they’ve gone back out, they go out again, they go out again, and again and again. I was making a point about a generation. That has nothing to do about the judgment of whether or not you send troops to war, the judgment of whether you bring someone home, the judgment of whether or not you decide on a health care policy. You understand that.”

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REPORTER: “No, not judgment but details. That’s something I’ve heard from some voters. Maybe not at your events, but details.”

BIDEN: “Well, but the details are irrelevant in terms of decision making if, in fact, I forget that it was Rodriguez of — all the times I’ve been in and out of Afghanistan and Iraq and Bosnia and Kosovo as much as anybody, except maybe my deceased friend John McCain or maybe Lindsey Graham. And so the fact that I would forget that it was Rodriguez who was pinning — I believe this was the case —pinning a Bronze Star on a young man, it’s irrelevant to the point. It’s like saying I had this very bright reporter and I think her eyes were blue. What difference would it make about whether you’re a great reporter if your eyes are brown? It’s irrelevant and you know it.”