Live Blog!!: The Vice Presidential Debate 9pm – 10.30pm ET
Joe Biden says Romney and Ryan are talking about his mother and father when they talk about the 47% of Americans who supposedly don’t take responsibility for themselves. That’s a serious, serious blow.
Stylistically, Ryan closes quite well as he draws a clear contrast between the two candidates for Presidency and argues Obama’s policies have failed.
Not much in it here as both sides deliver statements designed to appeal to their base, but Biden pips it again with a more forceful defense of their policies and attack on Republican economics.
ABC News decides the use of the word ‘Malarky’ was the most important part of the debate – then the analysts go into highly important topics like whether Biden over corrected Ryan…..good Lord… no wonder the mainstream media is losing relevancy by the week.
At the end of it, it was a very, very resounding victory for the Democrats tonight. Biden used effective aggression all night long forcing Ryan to defend the indefensible. Over and over again Biden refused to accept Ryan’s math or absurd policy proposals, and pummeled him on issues that matter to regular Americans. It was a direct appeal to the middle classes who will decide this election, and he gave them a clear choice – a government that works in their interest or a government that works in the interests of millionaires. It looked like a man vs a boy in many spots with Ryan unsure of how to hit back effectively. Biden did not let Ryan get away with anything, countering the incessant stream of nonsense with facts and logic. Ryan, to his credit, did not fold and did his best to hold ground against the clearly angered Biden, but he simply could not argue his way out of the ridiculous claims and faulty policies he and Romney have been campaigning on for the past year.
We’ll see how this plays out in the polls and whether the performance has helped regain lost ground after the President’s performance last week, but it’s a pretty safe bet that the Obama campaign team is breathing a lot easier.
Onto being Catholicism and religion. I don’t have much to say on this to be honest – in terms of political points, each candidate is playing to their base so I’m sure this is an equal round. I agree with Biden on abortion, but I certainly respect Ryan’s position as well (not popular in liberal circles I know). I think Ryan is genuinely pro life, whereas Romney isn’t – he’s whatever the polls tell him he should be. Pretty heartfelt from both candidates to be honest – a much more civil tone.
Ryan has clearly done his homework for this debate as he’s giving a decent amount of detail – particularly on foreign policy and Afghanistan. He’s just not as sure footed as Biden, so regardless of the substance, Biden is winning this handily. I don’t agree with either candidate on foreign policy, but Biden at least lives in the real world. Ryan just wants more war and more money for war.
They are getting to the specifics of Romney and Ryan’s tax plans. Given there aren’t any, this should be easy game for Biden. Biden reels off actual studies instead of Ryan’s fictional ones. Ryan brings up Jack Kennedy as a Democrat who cut taxes and created growth. Biden says “Now you are Jack Kennedy?” This is awesome. Haven’t enjoyed a debate like this in years.
Taxes – this should be a massive opportunity to smash Romney and Ryan. Biden launches into it straight away and accuses the Republicans of holding the middle class hostage to the wants and needs of millionaires. Ryan looks shaky here. He’s going into some very misleading numbers here, exaggerating Obama’s tax plans and understating their own. Here’s the truth – from James Kwak:
Mitt Romney wants to lower the top individual tax rate to 28 percent; Obama wants to let it increase to 39.6 percent. When you add in the Medicare payroll tax, Romney’s rate increases to 30.9 percent, while Obama’s increases to 43.4 percent. (Romney wants to repeal the Affordable Care Act, which would mean repealing the 0.9 percent Medicare surcharge on high-income households.) That means Obama’s tax rate would be 40 percent higher than Romney’s.
Joe Biden is making a forceful defense of being careful when hyping the threat from Iran. It’s not much to get excited about given Iran poses literally no threat to anyone (Biden is right – they are nowhere near getting a weapon), but again, this goes to the point that Obama and Biden are the last figures left in American politics to prevent the Republicans getting us into deep, deep trouble.
Andrew Sullivan on Biden smiling:
Biden should not smile condescendingly when Ryan lies. But he’s calm, clear and forceful. And seems much more authoritative than Ryan. But Ryan gets his points in. And the CNN approval line gives Ryan an advantage. That surprises me so far.
Joe Biden is laughing his way through Ryan’s tantrum over Iran – I’m not sure whether this is a good strategy, but he’s coming back and countering Ryan point by point. This is a far stronger performance than Obama. “There is no weapon that the Iranians have” says Biden. He’s telling Ryan to stop fear mongering.
Ok, we’re ready to go. Live blogging begins now!
We will be providing LIVE “up to the minute” updates on the Vice Presidential debate tonight between Joe Biden and Paul Ryan in what could be a defining moment in the race for the White House. Check the posts here!