Speaking to an audience of Hispanic activists, Vice President Joe Biden compared the struggles of Latino Americans to that of his own Irish ancestors and cast the GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney as out of touch with the American people.

He told those gathered for the civil rights group National Council of La Raza, “There's always been a fight between the voices of inclusion and the voices of exclusion — between those pushing forward and those who continue to try to pull us back."

The Vice President spoke of how Irish Americans had faced a wave of discrimination and bigotry when they arrived to the United States in the 19th and 20th centuries. He included the racist signs which appeared in the windows of businesses - "No Irish allowed" or "No irish need apply" - which greeted Irish Immigrants in major US cities.

Biden said, “The same kind of backlash — that kind of backlash — is not new in American history; it is not new in American politics.

"But then we in America prevailed because of the better angels of the American people. But even though the stakes are higher today and more consequential and more severe today, I am still convinced you — we — will prevail because of the better angels of the American people."

Read more:

New information on Vice President Joe Biden’s Irish roots uncovered

In his speech he painted Romney as being out of touch. He commented on the fact that “until recently [he] had a Swiss bank account and millions of dollars invested in the Grand Cayman Islands beyond scrutiny.”

During his speech he also commented on the Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney’s immigration policies including his hard-line immigration measures, opposed by the majority of the Hispanic community.

The VP said, “Imagine what the Supreme Court will look like after four years of a Romney presidency.

"Imagine the court with two more [Justice Antonin] Scalias, or two more [Chief Justice John] Roberts.

"Romney wants you to show your papers, but he won't show us his. It's kind of fascinating."
He added, “This is your moment. This is the moment for your community. It's much much much too important to remain silent."

Here’s the CBS coverage of his speech:


Vice President Joe BidenAP