As VP Debate Looms, Biden Buckles Down

Vice president preps feverishly after weak Obama performance
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Oct 8, 2012 12:02 AM CDT
Updated Oct 8, 2012 8:11 AM CDT
Vice President Joe Biden speaks in Council Bluffs, Iowa, Thursday, Oct. 4, 2012.   (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

(Newser) – After President Obama faltered in his own debate, it falls to his gaffe-happy second-in-command to put things back on track—and Joe Biden isn't taking this one lightly, the New York Times reports. What he's doing to prepare:

  • Biden has holed himself up in a Delaware hotel to practice, with Maryland Rep. Chris Van Hollen playing the role of Paul Ryan. Van Hollen's Ryan impression: a nice guy launching vicious arguments.
  • Top Obama adviser David Axelrod is in charge of the performance, taking a hands-on role that seeks to learn from Obama's stumbles. Biden's instructions: Be aggressive.

  • It's very different from Biden's debate with Sarah Palin; this time, says former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm, the VP can "go hard on policy."
  • The veep is reading Paul Ryan's book, Young Guns.
  • Meanwhile, more post-mortem from Obama's own debate: Departing the stage, it seems the president thought things had gone OK. "He knew that Romney had had a decent night as well," says Axelrod. "But it’s very hard when you’re standing there." Later, Obama told his team: "This one's on me."
(Read more Joe Biden stories.)

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