Vice Presidential Debate Commentary: Who Won?

(The Verge) – The VP debate was so overbearing to me. For some reason while I was watching it I didn’t get the feeling that I was watching something that should have been televised at all. I got the impression, like most I am sure, that Biden was overbearing and snarky. While I was talking to other friends about the debate during and after it, they agreed with me that they just couldn’t understand why he felt it was necessary to be laughing and smiling after every single time that either Ryan said something that he didn’t like, or think of first. The “Biden-Made Comedy” was awfully inappropriate. Something makes me think that these debates are not going well for the current administration (is this a given?).
While this is true, I also tend to think this debate was a solid one. While the annoying attitude of Biden was distracting, Raddatz did a way better job than Lehrer dolling out topics and making sure that the candidates stayed on task at most times. There was nothing we wanted more than for the candidates to stay on task. Among all the interruptions of Biden, we see that there were also plenty of chances for Ryan to step in and interject, but he didn’t do this. I was surprised because we have seen in interviews over the past month or so, that Ryan is pretty aggressive. Can we recall the one most recently where he was nose to nose with an interviewer? I think though that not being overbearing in this case, really assisted Ryan and put yet another nail in the Obama tickets coffin.

Joe Biden throws his arms up in protest during the Vice Presidential debate last week. Photo take from: esquire.com

Beginning with Libya and ending with an emotional topic like abortion, Raddatz did a decent job figuring out how to phrase the questions and keep them timely. The answer to the first question prompted differences right away between ideas of American security between the two tickets. Biden’s smiling and laughing though was just downright horrifying during a terrible topic and series of tragic events. Ryan declared the presidents actions an, “unraveling of Obama foreign policy” when asked if it was appropriate for Romney to criticize Pres. Obama during the Libya crisis. Ultimately, Biden said that the Romney ticket “bets against America all the time” and that Ryan’s claims are “a bunch of malarky.” Ultimately, Biden claimed that they weren’t told that they needed more security, which is widely debatable..
When asked questions dealing with military strikes in Iran, Biden simply stated that Iran is a “good amount” away from having a nuclear weapon and there’s nothing more that the administration can do than speak directly to the American people about such a topic. Ryan made it clear that a nuclear-weaponed Iran is worse than another war with the middle east because with Iran having a nuclear weapons, it opens up a whole war within the middle-east itself. Making this more clear, Ryan made it easier for the people to understand what is really at stake on the largest of all scales.
Questions about the economy came up next in which dealt directly with unemployment and how long it will take to get it below 6%. It is here where Biden really became extremely aggressive, his voice was raised and his sentences were ill-formed and rather abrupt. Ryan connected with the American people when he acknowledged that the Obama administration inherited a tough situation when they took office, and this was another plus for the Romney ticket. Instead of Biden’s ramble about how things are basically still on the downhill, Ryan talked and spoke about plans and laid out the platform that the Romney ticket has to offer. The best part about this? Ryan’s comment about the VP knowing that things don’t always come out of peoples mouths the way they plan.
Medicare and entitlements, paying more or less in taxes, whether or not we should leave Afghanistan now and what more we can accomplish, and religion and abortion were all other topics that were also addressed in this debate. In all, both sides were heard and the debate was healthy and chock-full. The winner here in my opinion? Ryan. Why? Simply because of his professionalism and his ability to remain collected and well represented. Ryan demonstrated in his performance the fact that he could back up the Romney/Ryan ticket, and he did it with dignity. Perhaps Biden thought that being more aggressive was necessary here because of the lack of personality in Obama’s first appearance two weeks ago? Well in this case, it didn’t work out.
Can Obama bounce back from what seems like a less fortunate first appearance?  We will find out today through a town hall meeting format debate dealing with foreign policy and domestic issues moderated by Candy Crowley at 9 p.m.