Sparks Fly at VP Debate in Kentucky
Things heated up fast at Thursday night’s debate in Danville, Kentucky, where Vice President Joe Biden and Republican vice presidential nominee Representative Paul Ryan attacked each other over policies.
The debate began with a discussion about the attacks in Libya and foreign policy, where Ryan criticized the Obama administration over its response, saying the White House avoided labeling the attack as terrorism. Ryan also accused the White House’s actions as projecting weakness.
“It projects weakness,” said Ryan. “And when we look weak, our adversaries are much more willing to test us.”
Biden called his opponent’s assertions “malarkey.”
“Not a single thing he said is accurate,” the vice president responded.
Biden criticized Ryan for cutting embassy security spending and accused Republican Presidential nominee Mitt Romney for politicizing the event before facts, like the death of Ambassador Chris Stevens in Benghazi, came to light.
Such would be the tone of the debate. The two traded barbs, while Biden seemed to listen incredulously, often grinning and laughing while Ryan spoke.
For Democrats, it seemed to be a welcome change of pace. President Barack Obama had been accused of being too relaxed in his first debate against Romney, and himself admitted to being too reserved. However, in this debate, neither candidate seemed to hold back much.
The hour and half debate, moderated by ABC News’ Martha Raddatz, touched on domestic issues including health care and taxes, along with foreign policies such as Iran’s efforts to obtain a nuclear weapon.
Biden also touched upon the 47% remark made by Romney at a fundraiser. Ryan defended his running mate, saying “sometimes the words don't come out of your mouth the right way.”
The Vice President responded that, if you believed the 47 percent comment was a mistake, “I got a bridge to sell you.”
While vice presidential debates usually do not change the mind of voters - people generally look to what the presidential candidates have to say - this event had offered both a way to establish their party’s platforms.
Currently, according to the latest polls, Obama’s leads in swing states have mostly dropped, with a near tie in Florida and Virginia.