What They Are Saying…

- October 12, 2012

Biden's Demeanor Clashed With Issues That Are No Laughing Matter


The New York Times' Alessandra Stanley: Biden Came Off As "A Guest At A Comedy Club Roast, Not A Vice President Debating The Fate Of The Nation With His Opponent." "He laughed at Mr. Ryan's remarks so often and so heartily that at times he seemed like a guest at a comedy club roast, not a vice president debating the fate of the nation with his opponent." (Alessandra Stanley, "Night Of Withering Ripostes, Mostly Delivered By Biden," The New York Times, 10/12/12)

  • CBS's John Dickerson: "This Notion That Kind Of You Can Laugh Off The Things-- That Could For Some Voters Come Across As A Little Bit Too Proud Of Yourself When You Have Presided Over An Economy That's This Weak." CBS's JOHN DICKERSON: "I think there's a down side, potentially, to that. The knock against the Clinton [sic] administration that the Romney people are trying to play on is that they're arrogant. They've gotten kind of lax. They've gotten settled with themselves. And this notion that kind of you can laugh off the things-- that could for some voters come across as a little bit too proud of yourself when you've presided over an economy that's this weak." (CBS News, 10/11/12)
  • Biden's Behavior "Seemed Out of Place, Especially When The Subject Was Foreign Policy." "And given the wonkiness of the debate -- from Libya to taxes to Afghanistan to Medicare -- the television image that will be repeated most often will be Biden's sardonic grin, which sometimes seemed out of place, especially when the subject was foreign policy." (Doyle McManus, Op-Ed, "Vice Presidential Debate: Biden's Mission Accomplished," Los Angeles Times' Opinion L.A. , 10/11/12)

NBC's Tom Brokaw: "Mika, I Just Don't Think You Should Be Laughing During A Discussion About Thermonuclear War With Iran. That's What He Was Doing." (MSNBC's "Morning Joe," 10/12/12)

  • Brokaw: "It's a very serious issue, it's a very serious issue and however amused you are it's about tone as well ..." (MSNBC's "Morning Joe," 10/12/12)

ABC's Jonathan Karl: "Republicans claimed he interrupted Ryan 82 times, often breaking out in laughter even when Ryan was talking about Iranian nukes." (ABC's "Good Morning America," 10/12/12)


NBC's David Gregory: "If You've Got The Facts On Your Side, You Don't Lose Your Cool At All." MSNBC's MIKA BRZEZINSKI: "All right. Is you know what?" NBC's DAVID GREGORY: "I think that is a sign of exasperation that's an attempt to belittle Ryan but actually shows a little bit more - you know, I think too much strain on the part of Biden. You know, as a consummate pro, if you've got the facts on your side, you don't lose your cool at all. You just say, 'hey, let me just take this on. That's just plain wrong. This is the wrong way to look at it.'" (MSNBC's "Morning Joe," 10/12/12)

Politico's Jonathan Martin And John Harris: "[T]he Manic Nature Of Biden's Performance And The Incessant Interruptions May Have Become A Bit Repetitive Or Annoying For Some Viewers." "But if the evening may not prove consequential, it was without doubt entertaining - at least for the first 30 minutes, until the manic nature of Biden's performance and the incessant interruptions may have become a bit repetitive or annoying for some viewers." (Jonathan Martin and John F. Harris, "Joe Biden, Paul Ryan Clear The Bar - Barely," Politico, 10/12/12)

Forbes' John Tammy: Biden's Answers And Countenance "Revealed Someone Who Felt He'd Lost." "About halfway through last night's debate between Congressman Paul Ryan and Vice President Joe Biden, the VP's answers - and his unsteady countenance - revealed someone who felt he'd lost." (John Tamny, "Ryan Drew Blood Early, Then Cruised To Victory Over Unsteady, Flustered Biden," Forbes, 10/12/12)

The Huffington Post's Ann Breoff: "Biden's Eye-Rolling, Snide Laughter And 82 Interruptions, Grew Old Fast." "While the ever-quotable South Carolina Democratic Party Chairman Dick Harpootlian predicted that Biden would take 'the old meat-ax' to Ryan, Biden's eye-rolling, snide laughter and 82 interruptions, grew old fast." (Ann Brenoff, "Vice Presidential Debate: Medicare, Social Security And Other Issues That Matter To Mid-Lifers," The Huffington Post, 10/12/12)

  • The Associated Press' Julie Pace: "But Biden Didn't Seem To Like It Much When Raddatz Turned The Tables On Him, Cutting Him Off During An Exchange On Unemployment." "But Biden didn't seem to like it much when Raddatz turned the tables on him, cutting him off during an exchange on unemployment. He spread his hands incredulously, leaned back in his chair, his arms crossed." (Julie Pace, "Biden Walks Line Between Aggressive, Domineering," The Associated Press, 10/11/12)


TIME's Mark Halperin: "I Think The Vice President May Have Put Down Some Marks There That Are Going To Cause Problems For The Administration Going Forward." TIME's MARK HALPERIN: "So if there's anything out of the debate that I think could have resonance and be a moving target going forward, it's the topic of Benghazi, and I think the vice president may have put down some marks there that are going to cause problems for the administration going forward." (MSNBC's "Morning Joe," 10/12/12)

The Washington Post's The Fact Checker: Biden's Claim "Was Contradicted By State Department Officials Just This Week, In Testimony Before A Congressional Panel And In Unclassified Cables Released By A Congressional Committee." "But this was contradicted by State Department officials just this week, in testimony before a congressional panel and in unclassified cables released by a congressional committee. 'All of us at post were in sync that we wanted these resources,' said Eric Nordstrom, the top regional security officer in Libya earlier this year. A Utah national guardsman who led a security team, Lt. Col. Andrew Wood, said: 'We felt great frustration that those requests were ignored or just never met.'" (Glenn Kessler, "Fact Check: State Department Contradicts Biden," The Washington Post's The Fact Checker, 10/11/12)

BuzzFeed's Rebecca Berg: Biden's "Assertion Runs Counter To Evidence And Testimonies That Were Presented At A House Oversight Committee Hearing Wednesday." "That assertion runs counter to evidence and testimonies that were presented at a House Oversight Committee hearing Wednesday, where the committee released five memos requesting additional security, and witnesses from the State Department confirmed that those requests had been denied." (Rebecca Berg, "Biden Contradicts Evidence On Benghazi Security Requests," BuzzFeed, 10/12/12)

Foreign Policy's Josh Rogin: Biden Contradicted "Three State Department Officials And The Former Head Of Diplomatic Security In Libya." "Vice President Joe Biden claimed that the administration wasn't aware of requests for more security in Libya before the Sept. 11 attacks on the U.S. mission in Benghazi during Thursday night's debate, contradicting three State Department officials and the former head of diplomatic security in Libya." (Josh Rogin, "Biden Contradicts State Department On Benghazi Security," Foreign Policy, 10/11/12)

  • The New York Times' Mark Landler: "Mr. Biden Appeared To Contradict Other American Officials When He Declared That The Administration Did Not Know About Requests For More Security In Libya." "But Mr. Biden appeared to contradict other American officials when he declared that the administration did not know about requests for more security in Libya. On Wednesday, two former security officials in Libya testified before a House committee that they repeatedly requested more security, but that the requests were denied by the State Department." (Mark Landler, "On Foreign Policy, Rivals Differing In Style But Often Similar In Substance," The New York Times, 10/12/12)

The Des Moines Register's Kathie Obradovich: Biden's Answer On Libya Attack Was "Unsatisfying." "However, Biden didn't clearly answer why there was not adequate security at the American consulate in Benghazi, Libya, or why the Obama administration described the attack as stemming from a protest over an anti-Islamic video. He said no one had asked for more security, and that the administration was just repeating what its intelligence forces were saying. That was unsatisfying." (Kathie Obradovich, Op-Ed, "Obradovich: Biden, Ryan Entertain And Inform," The Des Moines Register, 10/11/12)

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