WYTHEVILLE, VA (RNN) - In front of an audience filled with hundreds of black voters, Vice President Joe Biden said the plan by Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney to "unchain" Wall Street would "put you all back in chains."
He later said his word choice referred to U.S. Rep. John Boehner's use of "unshackled," when Boehner spoke about Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan's congressional budget plan.
He did not apologize for his choice of words but clarified his remarks, saying he intended to use the word "unshackled" instead of "unchained." Biden claimed any reference to slavery was inadvertent.
Soon after Biden made the comment, Romney came back swinging at his own campaign event in Chillicothe, OH.
"His campaign and his surrogates have made wild and reckless accusations that disgrace the office of the presidency," Romney said. "Another outrageous charge came a few hours ago in Virginia, and the White House sinks a bit lower. This is what an angry and desperate presidency looks like."
The Romney campaign also released a tweet expressing disapproval of Biden's comments. Biden responded at another event Tuesday.
"If you want to know what's outrageous, it's their policies and the effects of their policies on middle-class America. That's what's outrageous," Biden responded.
The Obama campaign stood by the vice president. A statement from deputy campaign manager Stephanie Cutter said they believed Romney's response was uncalled for.
"We find the Romney campaign's outrage over the vice president's comments today hypocritical, particularly in light of their own candidate's stump speech questioning the president's patriotism," said Obama's.
This is not the first time the White House has defended Biden's off-the-cuff and spontaneous remarks. During the H1N1 flu outbreak in 2009, Biden suggested that Americans avoid being in confined spaces, but inferred that people should avoid air travel and other forms of mass transit.
In the same speech at the Virginia campaign event, Biden made another misstep when he said, "With you, and I mean this, with you we can win North Carolina again."
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