Biden Does Beer Summit Chaser in Chicago

Vice President Joe Biden was on the defensive in Chicago today, calling the $787 billion stimulus package the "the most misunderstood" piece of legislation.

Biden, speaking at the annual conference of the National Urban League, took on the notion that the Obama administration has bit off more than it can chew.

"Some have argued we are doing too much," Biden said at McCormick Place.  "But how can we do less?"

Biden delivered a speech as part of a forum called "Preparing for the Future: How to Rebuild America's Workforce," During his speech the vice president countered critics who say that the tangible benefits of the Recovery Act are hard to see.

"It's not all about building new roads," he said. "But also about unemployment benefits."

Biden says progress has been made to pull the country out of recession, and he believes no one should be left behind. The vice president also said he's tasked members of Obama's Cabinet with educating women, minority and veteran business owners nationwide about benefits in the economic recovery act and said he'll meet next week with the Small Business Administration.

Biden came to Chicago fresh from the the beer summit at the White House that dealt with the treatment of minorities by police. Biden was sipping on non-alcoholic brew during the summit, perhaps to avoid another of his famous gaffes.

The Urban League conference runs through Saturday and organizers are expecting thousands of people to attend. The event kicked off Thursday with a star studded party that included appearances by Terrance Howard, Bill Cosby and Magic Johnson.

The civil rights organization was founded in 1910 to help marginalized blacks who moved to New York City to flee oppression in the South.

Other speakers during the conference included the Rev. Jesse Jackson and Chicago Mayor Richard Daley.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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