President Barack Obama has been criticized by many for his performance in his first presidential debate against Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney. The president’s debate effort was not what the campaign hoped for, and now the president’s reelection team will turn to Vice President Joe Biden to try and turn things around with Thursday’s Vice Presidential Debate against Paul Ryan.
Biden is perhaps better known for his gaffes and colorful soundbites than for his oratory skills and ability to handle himself in debates, but the 68-year old statesman is no slouch. Salon.com reports that Biden will have the chance to do in 2012 what he didn’t in 2008 — go on the attack.
“Sarah Palin, and the possibility that she’d suffer an on-air meltdown, was the draw (in 2008),” Salon writes. “And Biden was forced to tread very carefully. This time around, he’ll be free to be himself.”
Paul Ryan is a confident and able speaker, but Romney’s running mate hasn’t had much debate experience. Ryan, 42, is the youngest member of either ticket and knows that Joe Biden may have an edge in experience. After all, Biden mounted his own campaign for the Oval Office in 1988 when Ryan was just 18.
“He’s fast on the cuff, he’s a witty guy, ” Ryan told USA Today. “He knows who he is and he’s been doing this for 40 years. So you’re not going to rattle Joe Biden.”
Highlighting the importance the Obama campaign has put on Thursday’s debate, Obama senior adviser David Axelrod is overseeing Biden’s preparation. Biden has been reading “Young Guns,” a book co-authored by Ryan, and has been working on going on the offensive, something President Obama failed to do against Romney.