Biden's best attacks came early and often, especially during the foreign policy questions that moderator Martha Raddatz brought up at the beginning. After Ryan went somewhere over Mars on the administration's response in Benghazi, Joe tore into Paul.
BIDEN: With all due respect, that's a bunch of malarkey.But Biden's response to Congressman Ryan's attacks on the stimulus package was the moment of the debates so far.
RADDATZ: And why is that so?
BIDEN: Because not a single thing he said is accurate. First of all...
RADDATZ: Be specific.
BIDEN: I will be very specific. Number one, the - this lecture on embassy security - the congressman here cut embassy security in much for the embassy security piece.
Number two, Governor Romney, before he knew the facts, before he even knew that our ambassador was killed, he was out making a political statement which was panned by the media around the world. And this talk about this - this weakness. I - I don't understand what my friend's talking about here.
And I've never met two guys who're more down on America across
the board. We're told everything's going bad. There are 5.2 million
new jobs, private-sector jobs. We need more, but 5.2 million - if
they'd get out of the way, if they'd get out of the way and let us
pass the tax cut for the middle class, make it permanent, if they get
out of the way and pass the - pass the jobs bill, if they get out of
the way and let us allow 14 million people who are struggling to stay
in their homes because their mortgages are upside down, but they never
missed a mortgage payment, just get out of the way.
Stop talking about how you care about people. Show me something.
Show me a policy. Show me a policy where you take responsibility.
And, by the way, they talk about this Great Recession if it fell
out of the sky, like, "Oh, my goodness, where did it come from?" It
came from this man voting to put two wars on a credit card, to at the
same time put a prescription drug benefit on the credit card, a
trillion-dollar tax cut for the very wealthy. I was there. I voted
against them. I said, no, we can't afford that.
And now, all of a sudden, these guys are so seized with the
concern about the debt that they created.
Just devastating stuff. Ryan was simply outgunned.
Taegan Goddard at Political Wire starts the pundit roundup after the jump and the reviews are just as bad:
Ryan's goal was to build on Romney's strong performance last week and continue to reassure undecided voters. In the end, however, he found his toughest opponent wasn't Biden, it was his own record and the Romney campaign platform. He had trouble playing defense under Biden's withering attacks. Ryan was exceptionally weak on the proposed Romney tax plan -- "not mathematically possible", according to Biden -- while once again refusing to give specifics.
In terms of style, Ryan didn't take kindly to being interrupted. It was almost as if Biden was coached to interrupt him.
Biden was more prepared, more experienced and the clear winner.
Roger Simon at Politico:
Whatever Joe Biden was drinking Thursday night, Barack Obama ought to order a case of it.
Biden took on Paul Ryan in the one and only vice presidential debate and did what Obama had failed to do last week in his debate with Mitt Romney: Biden not only won over the audience, but got under his opponent’s skin.