Vice President Biden won last night’s debate. It was a clash between forthright facts and authentic conviction on one side and glib lines and empty promises on the other. It exposed the extreme risk Romney-Ryan economics pose for American middle class and to our leadership in the world.
o Must Watch: This new OFA video, “The Romney-Ryan Strategy: Thirsting for an Answer.”
· This debate showed that facts and details matter – and it’s clear that with their total disregard for both, Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan know they can’t defend their indefensible plans. On issue after issue, their plans would hurt the middle class:
o Taxes: Ryan couldn’t explain how their tax plan wouldn’t hurt the middle class because it would. It’s mathematically impossible to pay for their $5 trillion tax plan favoring the wealthiest without raising taxes on middle-class families.
o Jobs: Ryan couldn’t explain how their double-down on trickle-down would create jobs now because it wouldn’t. Independent economists say their plans could slow our economic recovery and eliminate jobs.
o Defense Spending: Ryan falsely claimed that Romney wouldn’t increase defense spending by $2 trillion – even though independent fact-checkers say they would.
o Iran: Ryan couldn’t explain what they would do differently on Iran because the President has already put unprecedented pressure on the Iranian regime with crippling sanctions that Romney admits are working. Romney and Ryan can’t say what they’d do differently, except blustering about recklessly taking us to war.
o Afghanistan: Ryan couldn’t explain their plan for our troops in Afghanistan because they don’t have one. The President has a clear plan to end the war in Afghanistan in 2014 while Romney has been all over the map.
o Women’s Health: When Ryan was asked to ensure women that their right to choose would be protected, he refused to answer because they wouldn’t. Romney would defund Planned Parenthood and appoint Supreme Court justices to overturn Roe v. Wade. In the House, Ryan worked with Todd Akin to try to narrow the definition of rape and outlaw abortion even in cases of rape and incest.
· With straightforward facts, honest convictions and forceful answers, Vice President Biden illustrated how he’s spent a lifetime fighting for the middle class and how he and President Obama will continue doing so in a second term – and the pundits agree:
o David Gregory @davidgregory: Advantage here is for Biden. Swarming Ryan. Throwing a lot of punches. Talking a lot. Debating.
o John Heilemann þ@jheil Biden is a human Politifact tonight.