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The Bidening
Author: BobR    Date: 10/12/2012 12:54:32

There was a lot of pressure on both candidates heading into last night's vice-presidential debate. Ryan need to appear presidential. Biden needed to purge the ghosts of the previous presidential debate. Knowing Joe, it promised to be a lively debate, and it certainly did not disappoint.

It was apparent into Ryan's first answer that Joe wasn't holding anything back. Where Ryan was attempting to maintain a steeley facade, Biden was the definition of animated. From smiles and laughs to exasperated gapes, he was rarely still. He also occassionally interrupted Ryan when Ryan told a particularly aggregious whopper.

The moderator - Martha Raddatz - was unfortunately part of the action too. She inserted her own opinions into the questions asking things like (referring to the attacks on the Libyan embassy): "Wasn't that an Intelligence breakdown?", rather than a more neutral "Do you think there was an Intelligence breakdown?" or "How do you think Intelligence played into the attacks?" To be fair, she also asked Ryan (when he was talking about his budget proposals) "Do you actually have the specifics, or are you still working on it?"

There weren't a lot of pre-packaged zingers, although there were some memorable lines:

Biden: "With all due respect, that's a bunch of malarkey"

Ryan: "I think the vice president knows, sometimes the words don't always come out of your mouth the way you want."

Biden (in response): "But I always say what I mean"

Biden: "Oh, now you're Jack Kennedy"

(the aforementioned) Raddatz: "Do you actually have the specifics, or are you still working on it?"

Based on what I was seeing online as the debate progressed, whether you think Biden was great or was rude broke down squarely along party lines. What the middle-of-the-road and/or undecideds think is less clear, but will likely show up in the polls in a few days. There will be discussions on the body language of the two, but I think the takeaway is that with Biden - what you see is what you get; there was no phoniness. Ryan kept his jaw tight, but you could see anger and frustration in his eyes, and his cheeks were flushing.

In the end, it's likely no one on the right or left had their mind changed by the debate. Hopefully, those in the middle realize which party is looking out for the best interests of the entire country, and which party supports their party platform in private, runs from it in public, and talks a good game on numbers, but can't produce them when asked.

110 comments (Latest Comment: 10/13/2012 04:59:28 by BobR)
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