Monday, October 8, 2012
VP Debate 2012: High Expectations and Underestimating the Opponent Can be Perilous
Politico Arena Topic: Could Biden hit Ryan too hard?
There is no question that Team Obama needs a solid debate performance from Vice President Joe Biden in the VP debates. After a week of stories following President Barack Obama’s weak performance at the Denver Debate, a strong Biden showing would help staunch the bleeding. Democrats hope that Biden can land some punches and counter-punches on the Romney-Ryan agenda that President Obama failed to land or even throw. Especially facing the architect of the GOP’s budget, Biden will be expected to take Representative Paul Ryan to task for his plans on Medicare, Social Security, and a host of other controversial policy ideas.
The Vice President has one very large advantage going into the October 11 debate: expectations are very low for him. Known for his verbal gaffes, Biden is neither feared nor respected by Republicans, particularly by the VP nominee himself. Long-time Republican strategist Ed Rollins epitomizes this view when he told Fox News this summer that Ryan “is going to wipe up the floor with Biden in the debates.” However, high expectations and underestimating your opponent can be perilous heading into a debate—just ask Team Obama.
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