I'll sum up with repetition. This wasn't a contest. Biden dominated from start to finish. He was formidable and factual in a vigorous defense of the Obama administration's record, while Ryan offered, characteristically, a cheap buffet of ideological platitudes. Tonight was the night for Ryan to answer two major, persistently unanswered questions: How do you reconcile your $5 trillion in tax cuts with deficit-neutrality--specifically, or at least give us some specifics--and how does Gov. Romney differ from the Obama administration on Iran and Syria policy? Ryan offered: nothing. Not a thing. And that wasn't because he wished to avoid giving the answers; the plain, simple truth is that Ryan has no answers to give. Hence his excessive squirming and grinning; there sat clueless evasion on stage, before millions.
Paul Ryan brooding about the "debt crisis." Unbelievable. He voted for all of Bush's spending and irresponsible tax cuts and unfunded wars and of late proposed more budget-busting tax cuts and now supports Romney's budget-busting tax cuts and even greater defense spending and the man has the colossal balls to fret publicly about the "debt crisis"--others' created debt, says he. Unbelievable. Except it's Ryan talking, which makes the effrontery quite believable.
Biden's remarks on his religious beliefs were fluid and consistent with his political philosophy. Ryan's beliefs are jarringly inconsistent with everything that Jesus--who was, fundamentally, a socialist--taught.
A Romney administration would absolutely leave Afghanistan in 2014 but Ryan doesn't like tipping their hand as to a timeline. Can he even hear himself? It's just absurd.
Biden's foreign-policy experience is ... swamping. I know that's not quite the mot juste. Call it impressionistic--another Frenchification.
Oh geez Biden's blow regarding American troops and risk in Afghanistan was just brutal. He left Ryan stunned. I think I detect a cut on Ryan's upper right eye.
On Syria, Ryan's offering nothing but revisionism and what ifs and more of this godawful, monotonous "credibility" jazz. What he and Romney would have done, all past tense. Again, not a meaningful bit of difference on present policy.
In my book, this isn't even a contest. Biden is mopping the floor with this little scammer. And Ryan keeps gulping. He knows it.
Ryan is simply, outright lying about playmate Mitt's tax plan. Simply lying. He's asserting deficit-neutrality without any damn specifics whatsoever--again--and if the national audience can't comprehend that brazen reality, all is lost. His is an outspoken scam and he's proving it with every word. For the frist time, Biden is almost speechless. Ryan's lying is that overt, that offensive.
Ryan keeps talking about Social Security "going bankrupt." Without any changes, it will begin to dip into the red in 2030. Is that "going bankrupt," with 18 years to make adjustments?
"Follow your instincts" on Medicare, said Biden. Translation, absent any "wonkishness": The GOP is out to kill it, period, and the Dems have always fought to preserve it, period. Smart line.
Biden's defense of Medicare as it is was devastating--a defense which could trickle down-ballot.
Biden's delivering powerful stuff. There went "47 percent" again, and a damning reference to Romney's indifference to the auto industry. Up, up goes Ohio for Obama.
Oh Jesus the Ryan-begging-for-stimulus-cash attack. "Literally" laughable to Biden. Ryan simply looks foolish. Which he is. A hypocritical fool.
Boom! The "47 percent" bomb.
Biden is passionate and forceful and, dare I say it, outraged. My brain is interpreting all this as a positive, but its recesses are wondering: the pundits? Will the pundits decry Biden's aggression? Probably. See "screwing," below.
Oh that's going to leave a scar--Biden's notation of Ryan's own House having cut embassy-security funding. Ryan suddenly needed a drink of water. So soon.
Ryan will be shredded by the fact-checkers tomorrow on the Republican House having taken the lead on Iranian sanctions. And he still didn't offer any specifics on how a Romney administration would act differently on Iran. Biden, bless him, is making that clear.
Did Ryan just put "daylight" between Romney and Israel? Heavens!
Biden is strong. Really strong. He's taking Ryan to school here. He's visibly contemptuous of Ryan's cheap shots, as he should be. Screw debate "decorum." He'll be vilified by politics' Emily Posts, but screw them too.
Biden is coming out swinging. Direct, pointed assaults on Romney, while Ryan is going after Biden. Ineffective strategy on the latter's part; this debate isn't about the vice presidency.
Four minutes of opening statements for each 10-minute segment. What a dreadful format.