Who Won?

Okay, I’ll go first: In the final third or so of the debate Ryan proved the dominant presence on the stage.

But by then it was too late.

During the first two-thirds or so, when viewers were still watching, Biden pushed Ryan around–and Ryan permitted him to get away with him. Biden proved a loudmouth and a boor. But he also proved the dominant figure on the stage.

If you had to choose a winner, I’d say–and it pains me–that Biden won.

But I’d also say it doesn’t matter. This debate won’t move the polls at all.

That’s my two cents. Yours?

  1. genferei

    Joe played so fast and loose with the facts that almost everyone watching will have caught him out in some glaring lie. He just didn’t have the air of a man trying to tell the truth.

    Ryan gave no reason not to vote for him. I don’t understand the ‘too wonkish’ criticism: are people really not going to pull the lever for Romney because his VP knows stuff?

  2. Percival
    Ameriherron: Adam Baldwin over on twitter summed things up quite nicely. @PaulRyanVP “When a wise man has a controversy with a foolish man, the foolish man either rages or laughs and there is no rest.” —Proverbs 29:9.

    I think I’ll go around referring to the debate as “a Proverbs 29:9 situation.” There is something particularly satisfying about influencing people to look of Bible verses of their own free will. It’s like telling an occupier there is a dollar bill under a bar of soap. · 3 hours ago

    BadaBING!  Nice one!

  3. Boymoose

    Did Biden being a direspectful ass change anyones mind?  Im sure it didn’t.

  4. Nick Stuart

    Having thought about it a lot since the debate, I’ve not come up with a reasonable way for Ryan to push back on Biden without losing points for being disrespectful, or turning the debate into more of a bad remake of a McLaughlin Group episode than it already was. Especially since Ryan was having to debate both Biden and the the moderator.

    Saying “Ryan should have been more assertive” is the counsel of perfection.

    Anybody who’s read or heard any actionable way for Ryan to have done better on this count (not just different, better) than Biden, please let us know.

  5. Paul Erickson
    Brian McMenomy: Biden was certainly more animated and demonstrated better command of “facts” than Obama, but that improvement was lost not only by the 82 interruptions of Ryan, but the maniacal, uncontrolled disdain and contempt the camera caught. 

    About that “disdain.”  Did anything scream INSINCERITY! louder than Biden’s habit of referring to his opponent as “my friend?”

  6. Cornelius Julius Sebastian

    It was a draw.  Maybe a slight edge to Ryan with the critical swing/indeps. Personally, I wanted to see Ryan rip Biden apart, which he could have done. That would have been intensely satisfying to conservatives but a turn off to the swings.  Playing it cool, if even a little passive– but professional– may pay dividends with the swings. 

  7. DrewInWisconsin
    Babci: Did our “man about the globe” Biden actually say that Syria is a much larger country than Libya?

    I think he said Syria was five times larger than Afghanistan. At least, that’s what I heard.

  8. Trace

    Everyone commenting on Biden’s Syria/Libyagaffe, but am I wrong or was his reference to Sarah Palin’s “death panel” comment not a complete anachronism? Didn’t he say the “last time I was here debating Sarah Palin we were talking about death panels…”

  9. Joan of Ark La Tex

    The Obama Ticket brand will come together on Saturday Night Life. 

  10. Mollie Hemingway
    Trace Urdan: Everyone commenting on Biden’s Syria/Libyagaffe, but am I wrong or was his reference to Sarah Palin’s “death panel” comment not a complete anachronism? Didn’t he say the “last time I was here debating Sarah Palin we were talking about death panels…” · 38 minutes ago

    When he said that, I thought two things:

    1) He might be the one Democrat in this country who shouldn’t bring Palin up in a debate on account of how she trounced him the last time he was on that stage.

    2) How in the h-e-double-hockey-sticks could she bring up death panels in 2008? At that point, though, I’d lost count of his verbal gaffes and was just watching him laugh about nuclear war or whatever.

  11. Michael L

    I just could not believe how Biden kept yelling at Martha… that couldn’t have scored any points.

  12. katievs

    Here’s one of my main impressions:

    Ryan was right not to run for president.  He’s the junior member of the ticket.  And he’s a great and promising junior member.  He held his own.  

    Biden, on the other, was so much better at being glib and convincing than Obama that you have to wonder about the ticket arrangement.  Obama looks even more pathetic now.

  13. Cuban Mike

    Pyrrhic victory for Joe Biden.

  14. The New Clear Option

    Martha was the winner.

  15. katievs

    Another way of saying it: the Dems will be ecstatic for a day or two.  Then they’ll remember they have to vote for Obama, not Biden.

  16. RightTurn

    Biden won on gravitas, but I think Ryan’s gaffe quip will get the most replay. 

  17. Jimmy Carter

    Biden came across as an ass.

  18. flownover

    mugging , nervous sneers , what’s not to like if you like bullies ?

    unscoreable as a debate as it devolved, perhaps per the plan

  19. Barkha Herman

    Ryan – but a “few” wines later, I might be biased.

  20. Ramblin

    Biden was a mule eating briars.  The grins, smirks, and smiles were painful to watch.  

    His comments on Libya were particularly annoying.  He threw the intel guys under the bus.

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