Thursday, October 11, 2012

Did you like the class president or the class blowhard?

I have heard no spin. Seen no polls regarding tonight's vice presidential debate. I have three reactions.
First, both candidates debated well. although neither was great. Biden was much stronger than Obama. The Biden and Ryan styles were contrasting. Biden was aggressive and hyperbolic. Ryan was calm and understated and, I think, overly deferential. At one point, he needed to say "Mr. Vice President, here's how it is supposed to work. I get to talk with out interruption and then its your turn. Can we try that?"
Different people will react differently. My guess is that both bases will like think their guy won.
Second, as someone who participates in this type of forum on a regular basis, Biden's behavior was shocking. He interrupted and behaved like a smart ass teenager. His smirking and mugging for the camera was the stuff of bad actors and third rate personal injury injury lawyers. (Good personal injury lawyers are much better than that.) It was rude and unprofessional. It was condescending and disrespectful.
But was it ineffective?  Biden adopted the tactics of a cheap trial lawyer. Mostly it doesn't work. But sometimes - with certain audiences (or certain juries)- it does. It tends to work best not when you want to convince the undecided (people aren't that stupid). but when you want to inflame people who are already with you.
Third, without regard to which candidate won, Martha Raddatz was the loser. She  let the debate get out of control and she allowed Biden, in particular, to run all over her. I don't know much about her work as a journalist although I take it she has a good reputation. She was clearly not up to this.
Vice presidential debates tend not to matter and I suspect that this one won't. If you're a Democrat, you have to hope that Biden somehow made up for the President's abysmal performance. If you're a Republican, you have to hope that Biden's oafish behavior underscored the theme of an administration that has no case to make. I'm not sure that either side will get its wish.

Cross posted at Purple Wisconsin


Anonymous said...

"Different people will react differently. My guess is that both bases will like think their guy won."

Exactly, which is the underlying point of your post. You CLAIM that the VP debate was unimportant in the overall scheme of things, yet make it clear from YOUR perspective that Biden's conduct was "juvenile" compared to Ryan, the "adult".

Let's cut to the chase. It would appear that when Democrats/liberals are emotional (like Biden, his strength), they’re labeled "oafish" by their opponents (in this case, our dear Professor).

When Republicans/conservatives are emotional, they’re “passionate”.

Likewise, when Republicans/conservatives are reserved (like Ryan, his strength), they’re labeled “detached” by their opponents--which I'm sure the lefty blogosphere is in overdrive with this narrative.

Likewise, when Democrats/liberals are reserved, they’re “measured”.

Thanks for the spin, professor!

Anonymous said...

Ryan did a superb job of laying out everything that Romney WON'T do...not much besides platitudes about what he WOULD do. The GOP ticket offers absolutely no specifics. There hasn't been a more unserious ticket since Dole-Kemp.

jp said...

Most pundits and many Democrats consider Biden “oafish”.

jp said...

CNN poll:
Seven in ten said Biden was seen as spending more time attacking his opponent, and that may be a contributing factor in Ryan's 53%-43% advantage on being more likable. Ryan also had a slight advantage on being more in touch with the problems of average Americans.

Anonymous said...

Lyin' Ryan was lying his little heart out. The folks who have posted here, try to get opinions other than from Faux Newz.

Anonymous said...

By one tally Ryan told 24 fibs in the debate. What's the appropriate response when the other side lies? Reagan would smile and say, "There you go again," and he'd set the record straight, at least from his perspective. Biden reacted, usually with a smile, when Ryan stretched the truth. We expect leaders to call out liars, and Biden did so, without using the "L" word. Obama was criticized for passivity in the face of Romney's malarkey, and appropriately so. Biden handled Ryan's fibbing with humor and righteousness, and he projected authority.

Who did I like? It sure wasn't the Biggest Brown-Noser.

Anonymous said...

Wow, Republican thinks Republican won debate.

Stop the presses! Flash the siren on Drudge!

jp said...

CNN poll:

Thanks Joe (AKA The Oaf)

By a 50%-41% margin, debate watchers say that Ryan rather than Biden better expressed himself.

Forty-eight percent of voters who watched the vice presidential debate think that Rep. Paul Ryan won the showdown,44% for Joe.

Romney/Ryan are 2-0

jp said...

I am reminded of the time I took my daughter horse back riding. The wrangler asked me what kind of horse I wanted. I asked her if they had one named like Old Joe. She replied I have the horse for you; his name is Death Wish 2.

Anonymous said...

jp: CNN poll was of a sample that was more Republican than the electorate. CBS poll, showing a decisive Biden win, was of undecideds only.

jp said...


CBS poll: 17 percent Republicans, and 25 percent Democrats.

Let us move on to the latest Presidential polls.

Anonymous said...

jp--Most pundits and many Democrats consider Biden “oafish”.

Anyone can make this statement without evidence. Care to back up the assertion?

Regardless, you haven't done anything to refute Anony 11:01 a.m.'s position. Try harder next time.

jp said...

All is normal.
Just Biden being Biden.
Code words for oafish.

Why are you reluctant to move on to the presidential polls etc.

Anonymous said...

Blah, blah, blah, blah, jp. All you's got is opinion, no fact or evidence. Try even harder next time.

Polls are a waste of time. BOTH political parties spin them to the cows come home. Election results are what matters most.