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National Journal Column: Paul Ryan Wins Debate as Joe Biden Fails to Embarrass Rival
National Journal ^ | 10/12/2012 | Michael Hirsh

Posted on 10/12/2012 7:11:07 AM PDT by SeekAndFind

Vice President Joe Biden had one task in his debate with Rep. Paul Ryan on Thursday night: to regain the offensive against the Republican ticket after his boss, Barack Obama, all but relinquished the stage to Mitt Romney in the first presidential debate last week.

Biden failed in that goal, for the most part, though the sometimes gaffe-prone vice president certainly did not embarrass himself.

What the 69-year-old vice president needed to do in this debate was to use his vastly greater experience in public office—four decades’ worth—to show up his 42-year-old rival’s inexperience, especially in foreign policy. But Biden at best battled Ryan to a standoff. In particular, Biden was not terribly effective in countering the anticipated Republican script, which involved a move to the moderate middle less than a month before the election. Ryan, who for much of his young career has been a hero to conservatives, managed to successfully portray himself and Romney as defenders of the middle class and responsible stewards of foreign policy who would not get America into another war.

Biden certainly tried hard to catch Ryan out. He spent much of the 90-minute debate grinning in seeming disbelief at Ryan’s answers, which covered a mind-boggling range of issues from Afghanistan and Syria to the future of Medicare and Social Security. And unlike the president, who was perceived as “too polite” (Obama’s own words) in his first debate with Romney, Biden sought to highlight Romney’s most embarrassing moments on the stump, in particular the GOP nominee’s now-infamous comment that “47 percent” of the country had no sense of personal responsibility for their lives. “I’ve had it up to here with this notion,” Biden declared, saying that Republicans like Romney and Ryan needed to take responsibility for the harm their proposals would bring to the middle class and to investments in America’s future.

But Biden for the most part failed to add enough substance to his stock phrases of dismissal --“That’s a bunch of malarkey." ... “Not a single thing he said was accurate.” ... “This is a bunch of stuff” -- to embarrass Ryan. In particular, Ryan managed to neutralize the issue of whether Romney's proposed 20 percent cut in marginal tax rates would favor the rich, despite the lack of specifics of which deductions and loopholes the Republicans would eliminate. Biden did not effectively challenge those ambiguities in the GOP plan, even as Ryan followed the presidential nominee in dramatically shifting position on that plan toward the middle, highlighting Romney’s “bipartisanship.”

On critical domestic issues, namely the radical Ryan budget plan that embodies a fiercely pared-down concept of government, Biden for the most part failed to make the case that a Romney-Ryan administration would undercut the middle class and further enrich America’s wealthiest citizens, despite a Congressional Budget Office study earlier this year that concluded it would effectively eliminate, by 2050, funding for education, highways, veterans' programs, foreign aid, medical and scientific research, national parks, food and water safety, and most programs for low-income families and individuals other than Medicaid, as well as partially privatize Medicare. Biden, like Obama before him, missed opportunities to point up inconsistencies in Romney's and Ryan’s prior positions. At one point in the debate, Ryan repeated a line that has become a staple of Republican talking points: that America’s seniors would see their benefits reduced because of a $716 billion cut in Medicare. Biden failed to point out that Ryan himself had embraced those reductions in his own budget plan.

Although the moderator, ABC’s Martha Raddatz, spent a substantial portion of the debate on foreign policy—presumably a Biden strength since he formerly served as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and has been enormously influential on such issues inside the administration -- the vice president did not decisively get the better of the well-prepped Ryan, who has little experience in this area.

Raddatz began by asking about the administration’s handling of Libya and the death of U.S. Amb. Chris Stevens a month ago. Both candidates turned that into a broad discussion of the Obama administration’s handling of issues from the Middle East to Afghanistan. But there was no clear winner there either.

Biden effectively countered the Romney-Ryan criticism that Obama had been weak or indecisive in addressing the nuclear threat from Iran, but he also failed to bring up the latest news that tends to vindicate the administration’s sanctions policy: a broad-based collapse of Iran’s currency, the rial.


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: 2012debates; 2012veep; biden; debate; paulryan; ryan

1 posted on 10/12/2012 7:11:15 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind
I was impressed by Ryan's self control and his ability to maintain a train of thought with the all the rude interruptions from Idiot Joe.

If it were me, I would've wiped that sh*t eating grin off Biden's face and removed a few of his recently whitened teeth!

2 posted on 10/12/2012 7:16:40 AM PDT by The Sons of Liberty ("Get that evil, foreign, muslim, usurping, gay bastard out of MY White House!" FUBO!)
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To: SeekAndFind
Joe Biden Fails to Embarrass Rival

I think Biden did a pretty good job of embarrassing himself last night, and in fact, it's one of the few things he's consistent about. He isn't called the gaff master for nothing.
3 posted on 10/12/2012 7:16:59 AM PDT by ZX12R (FUBO GTFO 2012 !)
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To: SeekAndFind

Obviously written from a lib point of view, and calls it basically a draw, a standoff.

The silliest notion put forward is that Biden didn’t do himself any harm.

Say what??????????????????

All that SANE people can talk about is how Biden was a total BUFFOON.


4 posted on 10/12/2012 7:19:52 AM PDT by txrangerette ("HOLD TO THE TRUTH...SPEAK WITHOUT FEAR." - Glenn Beck)
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To: txrangerette


5 posted on 10/12/2012 7:21:44 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

I am not so sure Biden failed.

His mission was different from Ryan’s. Ryan tried to be a purveyor of information.

Biden’s mission was to take the load off Obama and the last 4 years of economic and foreign policy failures. Biden succeeded. He BECAME the distraction from the real issues.

Most of the talk this morning is about Biden’s actions, smiley faces, laughing, interrupting, chuckling, folding his arms, etc.

When Biden slacked off, Martha Raddatz picked up the slack and continued the interruptions as Ryan tried to respond.

Ryan got double teamed. He held up pretty well, but his messages were lost in the smiley faces, laughing, interrupting, chuckling, folding arms.

Biden BECAME the distraction; thus, he had MISSION ACCOMPLISHED.


6 posted on 10/12/2012 7:23:58 AM PDT by TomGuy
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To: SeekAndFind
National Journal Column: Paul Ryan Wins Debate as Joe Biden Fails...

Biden's constant flashing of his obviously "store-bought" teeth made me want to puke!!! What an empty suit !!! Biden also acted like he had "hoisted a few" back stage before putting on his "clown act".

7 posted on 10/12/2012 7:27:13 AM PDT by GoldenPup (Comrade "O" has got to GO!!)
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To: TomGuy

I agree, Biden was like a coach creating a firestorm in the press room after his team played a bad game.

Take the attention off the players and put it on himself.


8 posted on 10/12/2012 7:32:26 AM PDT by Blaine Fabin
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To: TomGuy; SeekAndFind

Old saying...you can pay now, or you can pay later.

But you will pay, if you supposedly “get away” with something especially if it’s this obvious, done in front of millions watching.

Biden distracted and the “mod” helped out at times, true.

But Biden being Biden is not pretty, it’s ugly, and it’s clownish and buffoonish. This is our Vice President, everybody, one heartbeat away.

Here, then, comes Obama and loudly proclaims he is as proud as he can be of Biden’s debate performance. Couldn’t be prouder of him!

A twofer.


9 posted on 10/12/2012 7:36:06 AM PDT by txrangerette ("HOLD TO THE TRUTH...SPEAK WITHOUT FEAR." - Glenn Beck)
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To: ZX12R
I think Biden did a pretty good job of embarrassing himself last night

Network commentators say Biden has singlehandedly revived the Obama campaign. Ryan was too much of a policy wonk.

10 posted on 10/12/2012 7:39:36 AM PDT by Theodore R. (Annoy the Establishment! Vote for Akin!)
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To: SeekAndFind
Biden was the drunk 'know it all' uncle who ruins every Christmas dinner... the man who keeps trying to 'stick it' to the young husband gracious enough to invite him for the family Christmas. What a jerk....
11 posted on 10/12/2012 7:40:36 AM PDT by GOPJ (You only establish a feel for the line by having crossed it. - - Freeper One Name)
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To: SeekAndFind

12 posted on 10/12/2012 7:40:45 AM PDT by MadelineZapeezda (Where's yo dollah ?????)
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To: TomGuy

Ryan failed to appeal to the “little man”, as he spoke above their heads.


13 posted on 10/12/2012 7:41:11 AM PDT by Theodore R. (Annoy the Establishment! Vote for Akin!)
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To: GOPJ

I agree with your analysis, but I don’t think the “little man” will. Ryan was informative but much too passive.


14 posted on 10/12/2012 7:42:21 AM PDT by Theodore R. (Annoy the Establishment! Vote for Akin!)
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To: Theodore R.
Network commentators say Biden has singlehandedly revived the Obama campaign. Ryan was too much of a policy wonk.

I don't think voters will say that.
15 posted on 10/12/2012 7:45:43 AM PDT by ZX12R (FUBO GTFO 2012 !)
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To: SeekAndFind

Ryan “held serve.” The details of the fine (and not so fine) points will be forgotten in a few 24 hours.

The images of Biden acting the fool will endure.

Lots of folks post ideas for fantasy ads - how about one around the theme “a heartbeat away????”


16 posted on 10/12/2012 7:51:57 AM PDT by don-o (He will not share His glory and He will NOT be mocked! Blessed be the name of the Lord forever.)
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To: SeekAndFind; sickoflibs; Condor51; GOPJ; Grampa Dave; AuntB; Tennessee Nana; CutePuppy; ken5050

WATTA COCKAMAMIE DUO—So far, the antics of the debating Prez/VP are very disturbing.

Obama was a dog-eared Hush Puppy unable to respond to prevailing govt problems —— when he did respond, he was incoherent, rambling and nonsensical.

Biden was a Laughing Hyena-—smirking and grinning at the most inappropriate times.

Even more disturbing-—there are actually Democrat voters who see nothing wrong with this-—yikes.


17 posted on 10/12/2012 7:53:43 AM PDT by Liz ("Come quickly, I'm tasting the stars." Dom Perignon)
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To: SeekAndFind
Ryan repeated a line that has become a staple of Republican talking points: that America’s seniors would see their benefits reduced because of a $716 billion cut in Medicare. Biden failed to point out that Ryan himself had embraced those reductions in his own budget plan.

Liberal spin -- Ryan's plan simply reflects the reality that Obama's $700B+ cut in Medicare is already law.

18 posted on 10/12/2012 7:55:11 AM PDT by kevkrom (If a wise man has an argument with a foolish man, the fool only rages or laughs...)
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To: TomGuy
I am not so sure Biden failed.

It doesn't really matter -- VP debates, as a rule, have no discernible affect on the race's outcome. The objective is to get out of it without doing harm to your side's ticket.

Did Ryan win? Some say yes, some say no... I don't care either way. He did his job of "do no harm".

But Biden? Well, he had a secondary goal of playing to his wavering base, and by all accounts I can see, he was successful there. But his "smirks and laughs" routine played very poorly (and indeed, the RNC capitalized on it immediately with a devastating web ad [get this on the air in swing states now!]), and he may have violated the "do no harm" directive.

19 posted on 10/12/2012 7:59:40 AM PDT by kevkrom (If a wise man has an argument with a foolish man, the fool only rages or laughs...)
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To: don-o
The images of Biden acting the fool will endure.

Wow, will they ever... especially with this Republican ad.

20 posted on 10/12/2012 8:08:55 AM PDT by ScottinVA (Record high turnout is our hope for sending 0bama home. Pray hard!!!)
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To: kevkrom
he may have violated the "do no harm" directive.

Is the morning talk about:

Benghazi? No
Medicare? No
Joblessness? No
Tax cuts? No
Social Security? No
Nuclear Iran? No
Joe being Joe? Yes
21 posted on 10/12/2012 8:13:28 AM PDT by TomGuy
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To: SeekAndFind

Jackass the Clown certainly embarrassed himself, however.


22 posted on 10/12/2012 8:15:45 AM PDT by MCH
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To: TomGuy
If it was a "victory" it was Pyrrhic. This image (courtesy of SeekAndFind) really says it all.


23 posted on 10/12/2012 8:27:27 AM PDT by katana (Just my opinions)
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To: TomGuy

SQUIRREL!!!


24 posted on 10/12/2012 8:27:52 AM PDT by epluribus_2
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To: SeekAndFind

I wonder if Ryan’s mission possibly was to draw out all of their fire.After that verbal purging, where Joe seemed determined to say everything he had rehearsed, whether or not it made sense, they can’t have much left. That means Romney can now have crafted answers ready for just about anything they throw at him.


25 posted on 10/12/2012 8:32:28 AM PDT by Anima Mundi (ENVY IS JUST PASSIVE, LAZY GREED)
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To: kevkrom

I concur with your assessment. Well said.


26 posted on 10/12/2012 8:33:36 AM PDT by Fester Chugabrew (ABO to the core.)
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To: TomGuy

Geraldo on Fox & Friends this morning thought that Ryan missed a chance to really hammer Biden on Benghazi. He also thought that the VP debate would stop Obama’s slide in the polls.


27 posted on 10/12/2012 8:48:18 AM PDT by Verginius Rufus
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To: Liz
*** Biden was a Laughing Hyena-—smirking and grinning at the most inappropriate times. ***

After the first couple split-screen shots of that moron and his goofy facial expressions, I thought, 'He's doing an Al Gore. Is he crazy?'.

But as it continued, and then with his interruptions, I just got mad as hell. And for sure I would have told him to SHUT UP! And I *may have* even smacked him as there comes a point where words alone won't work. I do admit that as I've gotten older, I'm a lot less tolerant with fools, idiots, and loud-mouth drunks

Biden was acting like all three.

And that so-called 'moderator' could have used a good slap too. She was playing Crazy Joe's debate partner.

28 posted on 10/12/2012 11:27:25 AM PDT by Condor51 (Si vis pacem, para bellum.)
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To: Condor51

BIDEN WAGED WAR ON WOMEN-—SPOUSAL ABUSE VICTIMS WARY

Women who suffered spousal abuse said they could barely watch the debate-—b/c they were unnerved by Biden’s antics.

They say Biden eerily reminded them of abusive husbands. All the tactics abusive men use to brutalize and demean, to make women feel inadequate and unimportant were the tactics they saw Biden use:

(1) not listening to their side,
(2) interrupting them when they dared speak up,
(3) laughing and mugging when they tried to air their grievances,
(4) demeaning and marginalizing them for daring to disagree,
(5) asserting male superority to keep women downtrodden and subjugated.

Women were unsettled by Biden’s behavior.
Those who say Biden “won” the debate-—must be all men.


29 posted on 10/13/2012 9:20:42 AM PDT by Liz ("Come quickly, I'm tasting the stars." Dom Perignon)
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To: SeekAndFind
I've been trying to think of a word that described Ryan's demeanor during the debate and it's "earnest".

Compare that to Biden...

30 posted on 10/13/2012 9:26:45 AM PDT by DouglasKC
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To: Liz
I read those comments by those abused women and I think they're right. Biden came accross among other things, a loudmouth Bully.

So I think the only ones that are saying Biden 'won' aren't necessarily all men, but surely are all Barking Moonbat socialists and wanna be tyrants. The type that occupy the internet sewer known as: Democrat Underground. Violence is there favorite posting topic.

One of DU's 'all-stars', Moonbat -- William Rivers Pitt, was even banned from DU for a time for threatening to beat up a homeless female site member. But the women there are just as classless and vile as the (cough) 'men'.

31 posted on 10/13/2012 11:41:04 AM PDT by Condor51 (Si vis pacem, para bellum.)
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To: Condor51

Think it best to keep talkin’ up Biden w/ fem-lib talk——b/c it makes the Dems go ballistic——and b/c more and more women will see Team Obama for what they really are.

Need to ask themselves-—who would they rather see come home for dinner—smiling/abusive Biden or soft-spoken/ working-class Ryan?


32 posted on 10/14/2012 6:09:34 AM PDT by Liz ("Come quickly, I'm tasting the stars." Dom Perignon)
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