September 4th, 2008
11:35 AM ET
6 years ago

Biden lowers expectations in upcoming debate against Palin

Sen. Biden said Thursday that Republicans are distorting Sen. Obama's record.
Sen. Biden said Thursday that Republicans are distorting Sen. Obama's record.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Virginia (CNN) - Joe Biden warned supporters Thursday not to expect him to unleash “one-line zingers” in his debates with GOP vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin — even if she does.

“I will be unrelenting in my debate with governor, the governor of Alaska in terms of the positions she has taken,” Biden said. “But I will not do what she is able to do so well, and many others–not bad. I am not good at the one-line zingers that go at, you know, that’s not my deal. So if that is going to be the measure of how these debates go, then I’m not going to do very well.”

Palin attacked the Democratic ticket in her speech to the Republican National Convention Wednesday, belittling Obama’s experience and charging he cares more about his career than about achieving victory in Iraq.

Biden broadly condemned “distortions” from Republican opponents at a campaign event Thursday, but took only a veiled swipe at Palin.

“[You’re] seeing distortions from opponents — this thing of 'country first,' this awful line about Barack Obama being more concerned about his career than winning a war,” Biden said. “I thought we were beyond that.”

A voter in the audience asked the Democratic senator to “please promise us that you will go at her” when the two candidates meet at a debate in October.

Biden warned her she might be disappointed, but promised to press Palin on the issues.

“If that is the measure of the debates are, me stating forthrightly about me and Barack Obama and what we’ll do to change the country, I think you’ll be proud. At least I hope you will,” he said.


Filed under: Joe Biden • Sarah Palin
soundoff (443 Responses)
  1. Brendan H., San Antonio, TX

    All Biden has to do is ask her to explain her foreign relations experience – and it's over!

    OBAMA / BIDEN '08

    September 4, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  2. Lisa M

    Hmmm. Wonder if he will make her cry.

    What she read last night was written for her.

    What will she do without a script?

    September 4, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  3. Matt, Manchester, CT

    Biden's delusional as always. As long as his debate lines are his own and not lifted from other speeches of other people, the press will praise him no matter what he does. It's a foregone conclusion that this windbag only has to show up and the media will proclaim his "slam dunk" of the debate.

    September 4, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  4. robert

    Biden is playinf soft watch what happens when they debate

    September 4, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  5. Dem

    Palin and 1 line zingers against:

    Iran
    N Korea
    Russia
    Cuba etc.

    is NOT what we need.

    Talk about adolescent and nothing but a suit... is this how she got all 909 votes in her state?

    September 4, 2008 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  6. Ian MN

    I really think Biden is doing a good job holding back nasty remarks you would expect most politicians to unleash after that hateful speech. This is what modern politics needs to become, not mud-slinging, but embracing opposing parties and working together. It should be more about what your candidate does, not what your candidates opponent "supposedly" doesn't do. I don't think the forefathers would have been too happy with that speech. Sorry guys.... :(

    September 4, 2008 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  7. bill mullis

    biden is lowering the bar with his debate with palen well i got news for palen ATTACT DOG FOR MCAIN she said it herself difference between hockey mom and attack dog give me a break guess its typical republican attact and smear when you dont have anything to run on ATTACT ATTACT WELL IT WONT WORK IN 08 BIDEN WILL TEAR HER APART

    September 4, 2008 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  8. FreeNLovIt

    Biden will win. He just needs to ask her about her opinions on all the issues that we care for.

    Iraq.. if McCain was going to drop dead, what's her direction..

    Economy.. how is she going to revive the economy..

    Seh's not hard to deal with. She's just 'more of the same' in a skirt.

    September 4, 2008 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  9. Kevin,FL

    Palin will totally whip Biden. Just watch and see

    September 4, 2008 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  10. Obama!!

    She will mess up, I dont think she can do anything without attacking like a pit bull with lipstick

    September 4, 2008 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  11. Mark - California

    Take the high road!!! The Republicans are like kids on a play ground, start name calling when the other team figures out they can't play ball. Joe could "kill" Palin in these debates but he's sticking to the issues, which clearly they didn't last night.

    September 4, 2008 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  12. Derrick - Texas

    Someone's been reading Sun Tzu, it seems... Very cagey, Senator!

    Good luck, sir!

    September 4, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  13. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Joe Biden: But I will not do what she is able to do so well, and many others–not bad. I am not good at the one-line zingers that go at, you know, that’s not my deal.

    Sarah Patlin: Beware, a mousetrap always offers free cheese.

    September 4, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  14. Kelby from Houston, TX

    I could have sworn that I just made a comment stating that our respones and claims against our republican counterparts need to be rooted in truth and reason. You don't find that many sound bites that originate from truth and reason. Well done Joe.

    But what ever you do, don't hold back.

    The truth will set us free

    September 4, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  15. just another voter

    It may help Mrs Palin if someone informs her that Jesus Christ was a community organizer.

    September 4, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  16. shannon

    Ohh Joe....
    The Palin is going to wipe the floor with you.

    Your friends have spent the last 5 days trying to tear her family down...

    You've awaken a sleeping giant and she is angry.

    September 4, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  17. jeanette

    It's time to take the gloves off and hit hard on policy.
    After all, the McCain camp says this election isn't about policy!
    I actually fear for our country is McCain and Palin are elected.

    September 4, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  18. Chad, Wisco

    I look forward to a good debate. As long as the questioning is equal and fair it will be shown that Biden has more Washington experience. I never did understand why this debate takes place anyways. 99% of people are voting for the top of the ticket anyways. Right now this county needs a true third party made of people who have real opinions and dont feel they need to just think what a party tells them. I share many beliefs with both parties, I guarantee that if I ran on that platfom and said I would just do what the majority people wish on every issue I would win the office easy. I work at a YMCA so that means Im good on community stuff so Im qualified.

    September 4, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  19. Bridget

    Palin has made a lot of community service volunteers and workers very, very angry. To tout the need for small government while knocking down those who are doing important work in the community so that people don't have to rely on the government, just flat out STINKS. Taking the low road is Republican territory. Joe doesn't need to go there.

    September 4, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  20. Bayou Joe

    Democrats are Toast. Joe Biden can't hold a candle to Palin. 30 years in the Senate and nothing to show for it. 175 days for Obama and nothing to show either. Palin gets it done. Leadership for America for the next 8-12 years.
    Good Biden Barack See ya later, don't let the door hit you in the derrier.

    September 4, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  21. jason, tx

    haha. she is a light weight sarcastic wannabe. Biden is gonna take her apart.

    September 4, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  22. anon

    he's running scared! He has NO private sector experience, NO business experience, and NO executive experience. He's a professional politician and Washington insider.

    She's a businesswoman, a former mayor, and a governor as well as a Washington outsider who, unlike Biden, has shown independence from her own party.

    She's going to mop the floor with ol' Joe!

    September 4, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  23. The Clear Thinking Independent Voter

    Make her talk about a strategic vision for the country. The GOP doesn't have one.

    If she does talk about one, SHE will be making it up , NOT JOHN McCAin.

    They can't fix that in a month before she has to answer the bell.

    On every question, Joe, tie it back to the future of the country.

    September 4, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  24. rinny

    palin doesnt even have a leg to stand on! i wonder what talking points mccain and rove gave her on iraq! i hope she doesnt confuse the iraq/pakistan line.

    September 4, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  25. Boye

    I was afraid this would happen when Palin was picked. Everyone is scared to fiercely challenge her because of fears of being called a sexist. I am fine as long as Biden debates her on the issues.

    September 4, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
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