Who Won the Vice Presidential Debate: Paul Ryan Defeats Joe Biden in a Close Debate


Thursday night we will finally get to see what the bottom of each ticket will have to offer when Vice President Joe Biden debates Paul Ryan. Unlike the Romney-Obama debate, Biden-Ryan will juxtapose two very different styles: Biden’s many years as a blue-collar working class senator from an older generation in contrast to Paul Ryan’s new wave of youthful Republican exuberance.

Debate Dynamics: Expect to see a large contrast between Biden and Ryan’s communication of talking points. Especially when the issue of Medicare and Obamacare comes up, the two vice presidential candidates will be taking direct shots at each other. The best comparison that can be made here is the Obama-McCain debates in 2008. In this case, however, the dynamic is shifted. Ryan is the more wonkish, professorial, and younger candidate while Biden is an older, long-winded, significantly more gaffe prone candidate. The impact this debate will have on the election is questionable, but it will definitely be quality and entertaining political television to watch!

How will both candidates respond to these challenges to their economic plans and put forth their very different visions for America? Stay tuned to see how each candidate's talking points resonate with a controlled group of college students!

You can watch the full debate here:

The debate is scheduled to take place in the small town of Danville, Kentucky on October 11, Thursday evening. The debate will begin at 9:00 p.m. EST. 

PolicyMic will be covering the presidential debate live. For live updates bookmark and refresh this page.


Final Takes: 

Joe Biden: B

The Vice President started off really slowly when the issue of Libya came up. The Obama Administration dropped the ball after the death of the Ambassador and Paul Ryan was sure to exploit that. However, once they went on to issues such as medicare, social security, ObamaCare, and abortion, Joe Biden was very clear about his stance.

Paul Ryan: B+

10:30 - Paul Ryan's closing statement killed Biden's. He took advantage of Biden not thanking him and then went on to characterize Mitt Romney as a "job creator"to be in the White House. 

10:28 - They both ended this last question really well. I thought it was a blowout for Paul Ryan at first, but Joe Biden has brought it back.

10:26 - Paul Ryan is going negative and its working. I thought he was going the wrong way first when the point of being embarassed about the campaign was asked, but he is solid.

10:24 - Excellent question about the tone of the campaigns.  Joe Biden is answering this well. The debate is ending well for both candidates. 

10:18 - Joe Biden has trumped absolutely in this discussion. Irrespective of your beliefs, Biden's conviction here can't be ignored. 

10:17 - Paul Ryan's emotional conviction towards being pro-life was powerful. Even though people may not agree with him, he provided a truly rational argument.

10:15 - Glad to see them finally get back to domestic issues. The social issues are great to see adressed in this debate.

10:10 - Wow that was a huge hit by Paul Ryan by saying that Bashar al-Assad a "reformer." Ryan is taking the spotlight back.

10:05 - Joe Biden has recovered, but Paul Ryan's name dropping is showing that he knows something about foreign policy. But you want Afghan's to die? That's pretty cruel! 

10:01 - The vice-president's foreign policy credentials are truly shining. He put forth an incredibly bold stance by saying that we are leaving in 2014, period. 

9:59 - I'm ecstatic that Afghanistan has finally been brought up in the Presidential debate forum. Ryan is doing surprisingly well on the foreign policy side. It's nice to finally see the two candidates calm down a bit. Now both candidates are coming off well and its good for all of those watching.  

9:56 - Biden is really picking up steam as this debate goes down. He's being a lot more aggressive than Obama was last week, and is starting to do it well.

9:54 - The tax cuts for the wealthy is always great for Biden to bring up. He needs to hammer this point more if he wants to get the advantage here.


9:51 - Biden's rebuttal here is excellent. Especially by pointing out the large profits by hedge fund managers. Best point so far!

9:50 - Great question to Congressman Ryan. But Paul Ryan has yet to put forth what exactly the loopholes are. 

9:48 - Paul Ryan is really on fire with his tax breakdown. However, I'm still waiting for the specifications on the loopholes! 

9:46 -  They're not holding it hostage, but the tax cuts went the Republican ways. At the same time it plays to Biden's point because the GOP is playing to politics and not the best interest of America.

9:45 - The moderator is starting to look scared because of Paul Ryan and Joe Biden's fighting across. 

9:43 - How many times has Biden interupted Paul Ryan in this debate? There has to be a counter somewhere. Biden's attempt to appeal by saying "folks, use your commonsense" is really turning off all the viewers here.

9:39 - Paul Ryan and Joe Biden bickering makes it incredibly difficult to hear the talking points both of them are trying to make. They seem confused about the different plans on the table. Its so difficult to draw a contrast when neither of them can articulate their stance without being interupted.

9:37 - Joe Biden is starting to scream voucher, but it is a great rebuttal to Ryan's point. 

9:36 - Here comes the real meat of this debate. Biden and Ryan on Medicare and social security will really be sticking to their guns. Paul Ryan just stole Biden's arguement. He is so skillful right now.  

9:33 - This debate is so entertaining. They are really getting at eachother and this is a real dogfight.


9:28 - WHAT A ZINGER! Sometimes the words don't come out the wrong way. The focus group ticker went WAY up on there. Paul Ryan is really connecting with the audience.

9:26 - Paul Ryan absolutely slayed Joe Biden when talking about Scranton. "We need real reforms for a real recovery". He's solid when being wonkish suprisingly. 

9:25 - Biden's rant about effective taxes is a solid rebuttal to the Romney-Ryan plan. "Leveling the playing field" is a great talking point for the democrats. He looks really aggrevated. 

9:22 - This foreign policy debate is getting extremely technical. Paul Ryan is foreshadowing a nuclear arms race in the middle east. First zinger by Biden! "He changes his mind so often, I can't be sure" 

9:19 - Biden has a strong response regarding the sanctions, but he has to to seriously stop using Mularkey.

9:16 - Biden is incredibly knowledgeable about foreign policy and nuclear weapons but he's going down Obama's track again. He is becoming overly professorial by explaining how a nuclear bomb is developed.

9:15 - Biden's chuckling is not doing him any good right now.

9:14 - Wow, Paul Ryan is really smoking early. On 9/11 how can we ignore places where there are known Al-Qaeda cells. This response on Iran is also on point. However, I disagree with the point about the fissile materiel. I really doubt any administration could stop that.

9:10 - Did biden just say Mularky? What a word! Nice point about Paul Ryan's budget cuts to embassy secuirty. "We did not know they wanted more security". You need a better response than that Mr. Biden. And with that, the focus group ticker hit ROCK BOTTOM.

9:08 - Biden has already busted out the smirk.

9:07 - Paul Ryan's response to this first foreign policy question is excellent. By drawing the comparison to Paris he is showing that the security detail in Libya was highly misguided.

9:05 - The Bin Laden card has already put into play. The moment Biden goes negative on Romney, however, CNN's handy ticker decreases.

9:03 - Starting the night with a foreign policy question. Excellent!

8:58 - Wait a minute, as "nervous as a hooker in church" ?! Would have never used those words to describe the debate.


8:51 - Haha, Martha Raddatz and Chamillionaire's Ridin' Dirty going off during a white house briefing. Maybe we should just have Chamillionaire moderate instead.

8:50 - Looks like Paul Ryan is truly well supplied for tonight.

8:45 - Oh no! CNN has busted out the focus group again. Do we seriously need a group of "undecided" individuals to tell America what to believe? 

8:40 - And the first Biden gaffe of the night is here:

8:37 - Another very accurate take on tonight's debate. 

"Expect Biden eager to cast himself as a champion of the working class and to portray his opponent as a far-right conservative and a member of the unpopular House of Representatives. He’ll look to tie Ryan to his budget plan, which cuts into popular programs, and charge that he wants to radically change Medicare and cut taxes for the wealthy.

Ryan will likely portray Biden as partner in a presidency that has failed to fix the economy and improve conditions for millions of jobless Americans."

Read more here: http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2012/10/10/171128/in-vp-debate-gop-looks-to-boost.html#storylink=cpy 

8:23 - Real Clear Politics shows Romney up in Florida but Obama up in Ohio. Romney absolutely needs both states if he wants any chance at winning. Statistically, the two candidates are less than 1.5% apart in both states meaning that it is a dead heat and probably within the margin of error. More than Obama hoping for a Biden victory, Romney needs Ryan to win more in order to continue his momentum going into the next presidential debate.

8:18: Imagine if this debate took place a long time ago in a galaxy far far away...

7:40 - The Economist published an interactive node displaying the relationship between unemployment, GDP growth, and real disposable income in predicting reelection. Obama is favorable in the unemployment category compared to past incumbents vying for reelection, but in terms of GDP growth only Eisenhower won reelection with lower unemployment than Obama.


7:26 - If Biden delivers a zinger tonight, don't be suprised if he gives Paul Ryan one of these. I mean, its definitely better than Obama staring at his notes.

7:18 - Its disheartening to see even more violence outside U.S embassies with today's attacks in Yemen. In relation to tonight's debate, it begs a foreign policy question. This will heavily play in Joe Biden's favor as he is a foreign policy expert. However, I'd like to see how Paul Ryan will handle a question about Iran and Israel, the safety of U.S embassies worldwide, and our future in Afghanistan.


7:09 - #JoeBidenMovies is trending on Twitter. These are two of my favorites:

6:54 - According to the Department of Labor, jobless claims have hit a four-year low. In light of recent unemployment statistics, I'm highly skeptical of how exactly this is calculated. If this framining is accurate then its a great outlook for the future. It would be a great question to ask the candidates tonight! Here's the article:

http://www.dol.gov/opa/media/press/eta/ui/current.htm - .UHdOGGlETvR

6:32 - The Vice-Presidential debate drinking game is out courtesy of Salon.com. If you can't enjoy the debate for its political value, at least you can probably get some other enjoyment out of it. 

6:26 - Clearly Paul Ryan is more popular than Joe Biden. Well at least that's what twitter indicates.

6:04 - The Twitterverse is already up and running regarding tonight's VP debate. If there is no mention of Big Bird, maybe they will talk extensively about Paul Ryan and gun control.

6:04 - Gallup posted a great article yesterday regarding the vice presidential debate's impact on national polling between the presidential candidates. Their findings show that the median swing in the polls is 1%. Likewise, no vice presidential debate has significantly impacted the presidential race. Maybe tonight's debate will be the game changer! Check out the article here:


5:58 - Real Clear Politics aggregate polling data gives Romney a .7% edge over President Obama nationwide. Over the last 14 days the race has drastically changed as Obama's 4 point lead has completely evaporated. In tonight's debate either Paul Ryan will continue Romney's momentum or Joe Biden will effectively stop the president's slide in the polls. Check the Real Clear Politics graph for yourself!