After last week's first presidential debate between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, attention now turns (though not as much as Obama would like) to the vice presidential debate on Thursday night. If there's one thing we don't have to worry about, it's Vice President Biden playing nice with the contender Paul Ryan. We can expect Biden to pressure Ryan into giving more substantial details on his economic plans than Romney was giving, possibly getting Ryan to contradict his own running mate. Of particular interest will be how much Biden hits Ryan on his "Path to Prosperity" budget plan, which, among other things, would turn Medicare into a voucher system.
Watch for Ryan to play the part of the blamer and explainer — blaming Obama for not fixing the economy fast enough, and attempting to explain his economic plan while at the same time distancing himself from his previous proposals to end Medicare, which is enjoyed by the very people whose votes he will need to get Joe Biden's job. As for me, I'll be waiting around to hear Biden say something hilarious.
Water cooler talk is that Ryan has an advantage in the debate, and he need only keep the momentum going following Romney's performance. After all, Ryan has been campaigning and talking to everyone he can for months while the gaffe prone Biden has been mostly secluded and hasn't done an interview over four months. Of course Ryan could do badly for the very reasons Romney did well. Romney was light on facts, very enthusiastic, and aggressive. If you ask me that sounds like Joe Biden. Obama was, in that debate, boring and too keen on detail for the average viewer. Ryan has to avoid coming off as Obama did, because it can be too easy to be perceived as boring when your standing next to Joe Biden. PolicyMic will be covering the vice presidential debate live. For live updates, bookmark and refresh this page.
9:06 Biden establishes a hard offense on foreign defense. Forcing Ryan to, so far, seemingly agree and say they had the same issue but say that Obama's Admin. is making us weaker. Also, Biden's got quite the facial expressions. Also, Biden already called Ryan's thoughts malarky.
9:15: Biden calling out Ryan on essentially having the foreign policy position of "We gotta solve these problems peacefully and to do that we gotta make them think we wanna go to war." Biden in general being very aggressive, while Ryan is on a defense but a defense that creats a workable narrative.
9:21: Talking-heads tomorrow "Biden was too aggressive...I kinda liked it..."
9:24: Joe Biden busts out big guns with disparate tax rates and the "47%" Ryan's reply should be quite somethin'...
9:29: Did Ryan attempt to convince me Mitt was human? That bae is covered for most of us Paul.
9:31 Biden dares ask Ryan and Romney for an actual plan?!
9:37: At this rate it seems that winning a debate just comes down to who talked more "down" to their opponent
9:41: For all of Biden's offense it's quite a gem that Ryan said he is "under duress"
9:46: Biden paraphrased "They're taking a lot of American stuff hostage in the name of America!"
9:49 Moderator question of the night "Ryan, you have refused to give specifics. Do you actually have specifics? Or are you still working on them?"
9:53 "A republican congressman is telling me to be bipartisan right now. C'mon!"
9:59 Debate on Afghanistan: Biden paraphrased "We gotta transfer responsibility to the Afghans." Ryan "They're making us look week!"
10:02 Ryan paraphrased "I believe in a timeline without any dates"
10:09 Ryan needs to get out of the foreign policy woods. Though I doubt Joe will let him until the moderator makes a stand
10:11 Ryan paraphrased "Cut the budget; war with Syria"
10:15 Ryan apparantly pro-life, not because of his religion, but because he felt a tiny heartbeat once
10:17 Biden personally pro-life but doesn't think his view should effect other peoples liberties.
10:27 Ryan's got a "Five-Points" plan. I gotta watch Gangs Of New York to see what it will be like.
Who won this debate? Biden clearly. Is it enough to change the narrative focus from Romney's last performance? Very possible. Real issue: Did Ryan performance, as a VP candidate, undercut newfound confidance in Romney? If the race had swung from the other direction then yes. But seeing as Romney is the "underdog" (for good or bad reasons) in this race I do not think a narrative of him being undercut will happen.