Election 2012

More Debate Reaction

[Above: Full video of the debate in case you missed it.]

All righty. Can we all stop panicking about this thing now? Seriously.

First things first. You should absolutely not expect the president to be as outraged, giddy and aggressive as Joe Biden next week. The president has his own style in these kinds of confrontations. You should, however, expect that the president will press Mitt Romney on fact-checking, much like Joe Biden, but not in the same way. Calibrate your expectations accordingly. Anyone who's followed the president should be familiar with his style. If the president were to suddenly act like Joe Biden it would be totally disingenuous and fakey. And weird.

Okay, with that out of the way, it's clear that Joe Biden walked all over Paul Ryan last night.

Not only did he literally (har!) laugh in Ryan's face, but he was a supremely tenacious fact-checker throughout. At certain points, Biden was so confrontational that I genuinely thought Paul Ryan might take a swing at him. Regardless, Ryan was already nervous and over-prepped, and Biden simply didn't allow him a second to settle in and relax. Brilliant strategy.

On top of everything else, he hit Ryan on asking for stimulus money and even trapped Ryan into admitting it. To Ryan's credit, Romney would've denied it. He also hit Ryan on supporting George W. Bush's effort to privatize Social Security. Biden nailed Ryan on voting for the Iraq War, the Afghanistan War, the Medicare Part-D program, and the Bush tax cuts without paying for any of it -- all of which compose much of the current deficits and debt. Whoever prepped Biden has clearly been reading the volumes of blog posts and columns about the utter hypocrisy of the Republican Party on the deficit.

While I'm here, how about this debate format? Win or lose, this is the way the debates should be. Free form open discussion of the the issues. For years we complained about the rigidity of the debates and how there's no room for confrontation or spontaneity. How quaint. We're into a new era here.

And finally, the scariest bit of information that should motivate every Democrat to the next nearest Obama headquarters: We learned last night that Robert Bork is Mitt Romney's Supreme Court adviser. Robert Bork. If Romney wins, as the vice president noted last night, Romney, under Bork's far-right advisement, will replace one or two justices with far-right anti-reproductive rights conservative justices. If that happens, Roe will be overturned and women with unintended pregnancies from rape victims to those whose lives are in danger will become fugitives from the law.

Oh, and it's clear that Romney/Ryan will take us to war in the Middle East again. And I assure you, they won't offset the cost with tax hikes, thus creating more record deficits for the next Democratic administration to resolve.

Some of my favorite tweets of the night: