Biden says economy is No. 1 issue

December 20, 2008 4:10:07 PM PST
Vice President-elect Joe Biden says lawmakers from both parties have urged the incoming administration to be big and bold with its economic aid plan next year despite the huge deficits being created. "There is going to be real significant investment, whether it's $600 billion or more, or $700 billion, the clear notion is it's a number no one would have thought about a year ago," Biden told ABC's "This Week" for an interview to air Sunday.

Biden said the spending was necessary to stop the loss of jobs and that the economy would be the administration's top priority.

On more personal issues, Biden said his wife, Jill, who teaches English at Delaware Technical and Community College, will continue to teach after she moves to Washington, but probably part time. He said several four-year and community colleges in the Washington area have contacted her.

"I think it's very important she have and maintain her own life, her own identity," Biden said. "And she'll be a very active second lady. She'll be very active. But I think it's important. It matters to her."

Biden explained that he had not resigned from the Senate yet because he said it was possible that he could have voted on some issues where the margin of a victory or defeat would have been close. "I have no intention of staying up until the day that I am sworn in as vice president."

He also noted that he's getting a second dog, and it will come from the pound, not a breeder.

Earlier this month, Biden picked out a 3-month-old male German shepherd from a suburban Philadelphia kennel to bring with him to Washington. Biden says he wants a companion for the German shepherd puppy and his wife wants it to be a dog from the pound.

The German shepherd has not been named yet. Biden says he's leaving that up to his granddaughters, who will announce their decision on Christmas morning.

ABC released parts of the interview before the broadcast.