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Vice President Joe Biden was in Springfield last night for a fundraising event for Robin Carnahan’s (D) campaign for the open U.S. Senate seat:

Vice President Joe Biden spoke at a fundraiser for Missouri Senate candidate Robin Carnahan Thursday night in Springfield, Mo. Biden blamed many of the country’s problems on the George Bush administration and said the stimulus and other programs are working.

“The reports of the death of the Democratic Party are greatly exaggerated,” he said, playing off of the famous quote from Missourian Mark Twain.

He said Carnahan has “more grit and backbone in her little finger than most people have in their whole body. I can’t imagine her bending to anything.”

He said Democrats will continue to push for science and environmental issues.

Carnahan spoke about her opponent, Rep. Roy Blunt, and the money that third parties have put into the campaign.

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon, who won handily in several conservative counties, touted Carnahan’s record as Missouri secretary of state and said Blunt is part of the problem.

“We’ve got a lot of problems in this country now’s not the time for this state and this country to mess around,” Nixon said.

Earlier that day, Biden attended an event for Wisconsin gubernatorial candidate Tom Barrett in Madison, Wis.

Carnahan’s campaign said the event sold out at 170 people, and it expected to bring in $100,000. Tickets started at $500 per couple for event, which was at the Tower Club in downtown Springfield.

Diners ate chicken and beef, a house salad and cheesecake or chocolate cake. Biden spoke for about 45 minutes. Carnahan’s mother, Jean Carnahan, who served with Biden in the Senate, attended the event, along with state Rep. Sara Lampe and some local candidates.

Roseann Moring

Springfield News-Leader