POSTED: Friday, October 12, 2012 - 5:17pm
UPDATED: Friday, October 12, 2012 - 5:17pm
It was the second debate of this Presidential season, and the reviews are mixed.
Opinions about who won usually depend on the politics of the observer.
Vice President Joe Biden and Congressman Paul Ryan squared off for 90 minutes on Thursday.
And the topics ranged across the board in what was a very good showing for both men.
Democrats have been overjoyed at vice President Joe Biden’s enthusiasm while Republicans have complained that it was over the top.
Style points aside, the actually discussion was substantive with fewer misstatements or exaggerations than the debate last week.
The attack on the American consulate in Bengazi was first up.
B:. The intelligence community told us that. As they learned more facts about exactly what happened, they changed their assessment.
R: We need Marines in Benghazi when the commander on the ground says we need more forces for security. There were requests for extra security; those requests were not honored.
Dealing with Iran’s nuclear ambitions was next up…
R: “And when we look weak, our adversaries are much more willing to test us. They're more brazen in their attacks, and are allies are less willing to.”
B: With all due respect, that's a bunch of malarkey.
Tax cuts were front and center.
R: You can -- you can cut tax rates by 20 percent and still preserve these important preferences for middle-class taxpayers...
B: Not mathematically possible.
R: It is mathematically possible. It's been done before.
And the Obama stimulus plan…
B: he sent me two letters saying, "By the way, can you send me some stimulus money for companies here in the state of Wisconsin?" We sent millions of dollars. You know...
R: On two occasions we -- we -- we advocated for constituents who were applying for grants. That's what we do. We do that for all constituents
B: I love that. I love that.
and the subject of abortion brought a more somber tone from the two Catholic candidates…
R: "The policy of a Romney administration will be to oppose abortions with the exceptions for rape, incest and life of the mother."
B: “I suppose my friend has adopted the romney position because in the past he advocated for rape and forcible rape…”
And Social Security and medicare…
R: We're not going to run away. Medicare and Social Security did so much for my own family. We are not going to jeopardize this program, but we have to save it...
B: You are jeopardizing this program. You're changing the program…”
R: “ I think the vice president very well knows that sometimes the words don't come out of your mouth the right way.
B: “But I always say what I mean.”
It was lively and fairly free of gross misstatements.
And it sets the stage for the next Presidential debate in one week.