Monday, September 29, 2008

W.W.B.D. (What Will Biden Do?)

Heading into the most eagerly anticipated VP debate in history, we’ve seen a lot of ideas flying freely about how Joe Biden should approach the event. Many have worried that his substantial intelligence experience advantage and combative style might lead to backlash if he is perceived to be too tough on Palin. Or, if he tries too hard to be polite, he might be seen as patronizing.

I’ve seen suggestions ranging from having Biden ignore Palin and essentially pretend to debate John McCain; to having him consciously shorten his responses in order to let Palin talk, and sink herself, as much a possible.

The most ridiculous suggestion I’ve seen is that Biden adopt a pattern of “sharing the dilemma” of feeling like he has to respect Palin as the GOP nominee, but recognizing that the American people deserve to know she’s an idiot (I’m paraphrasing!)

Personally, I like the idea of letting Palin demonstrate her own lack of experience and sophistication, while responding with just enough detail to remind viewers why Biden is one of the most respected experts on foreign and domestic policy.

If I were Biden, I would also try a subtle, non accusatory, way of reminding the audience whenever Palin speaks complete jibberish instead of answering a question. I would simply start my responses with some variation of the following:
Well, I’m not sure I follow what Governor Palin just said, but . . . (insert substantive response here)

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