Barack Obama, Elections, Joe Biden, John McCain, News and Current Events, People, Politics, Sarah Palin

Joe Biden Wins Debate, But Sarah Palin Keeps Her Job

After looking at the snap polls taken immediately after the debate by CNN/Opinion Research Corporation and CBS/Knowledge Networks (.pdf), I think it’s safe to assume Sarah Palin has kept her job even though Joe Biden won the debate in the eyes of most voters.

As for who won: In the CNN poll of people who watched the debate, “Fifty-one percent of those polled thought Biden did the best job in Thursday night’s debate, while 36 percent thought Palin did the best job.”  In the somewhat more relevant CBS poll of uncommitted voters, “Forty-six percent of these uncommitted viewers said Biden won the debate Thursday night, while 21 percent said Palin won. Thirty-three percent thought it was a tie.”

As for Palin keeping her job: In the CNN poll, “84 percent of the people polled said Palin did a better job than they expected”, and 54 percent thought she was more likable than Biden.  In the CBS Poll:

“Fifty-five percent of the uncommitted voters said their opinion of Palin had changed for the better as a result of the debate; just 14 percent said they had a lower opinion of her after tonight, and 30 percent said their views of her did not change.”

The uncommitted voters were also asked whether Palin was prepared to be vice-president.  Thirty-nine percent said she was qualified before the debate, and 55% said she was after the debate.  All of the above seems to indicate she didn’t flop, which is everything the McCain Campaign appears to have been hoping for.  Hence, it would be surprising if McCain fires her after this debate.

Mark Blumenthal makes an excellent case, however, that these vice-presidential debates historically have not been of much importance to who wins the election.  His thesis seems to be born out by the CBS poll, which found that 71% of uncommitted voters did not commit to either candidate as a result of the debate.  Of those who did commit, 18% went to Obama and only 10% to McCain.  But the poll has a margin of error of 5% — consequently, there’s no statistically significant difference between those percentages.  In short, the debate was a wash in moving uncommitted voters.

The Obama/Biden Campaign went into the debate at a time when they have been rising in the polls.  So, the real question, which I don’t think anyone can authoritatively answer for at least 3 or 4 days, is whether the debate boosted, slowed, reversed, or had no impact on their rise.  My hunch is it had very little if any impact. But I’m always guessing wrong about these things — so what do you think?  And what did you make of the debate?

5 thoughts on “Joe Biden Wins Debate, But Sarah Palin Keeps Her Job”

  1. Vice Presidential Debate – October 2, 2008
    1. TAX VOTE: Biden said McCain voted “the exact same way” as Obama to increase taxes on Americans earning just $42,000, but McCain DID NOT VOTE THAT WAY.
    2. AHMEDINIJAD MEETING: Joe Biden lied when he said that Barack Obama never said that he would sit down unconditionally with Mahmoud Ahmedinijad of Iran. Barack Obama did say specifically, and Joe Biden attacked him for it.
    3. OFFSHORE OIL DRILLING: Biden said, “Drill we must.” But Biden has opposed offshore drilling and even compared offshore drilling to “raping” the Outer Continental Shelf.”
    4. TROOP FUNDING: Joe Biden lied when he indicated that John McCain and Barack Obama voted the same way against funding the troops in the field. John McCain opposed a bill that included a timeline, that the President of the United States had already said he would veto regardless of it’s passage.
    5. OPPOSING CLEAN COAL: Biden says he’s always been for clean coal, but he just told a voter that he is against clean coal and any new coal plants in America and has a record of voting against clean coal and coal in the U.S. Senate.
    6. ALERNATIVE ENERGY VOTES: According to, Biden is exaggerating and overstating John McCain’s record voting for alternative energy when he says he voted against it 23 times.
    7. HEALTH INSURANCE: Biden falsely said McCain will raise taxes on people’s health insurance coverage — they get a tax credit to offset any tax hike. Independent fact checkers have confirmed this attack is false
    8. OIL TAXES: Biden falsely said Palin supported a windfall profits tax in Alaska — she reformed the state tax and revenue system, it’s not a windfall profits tax.
    9. AFGHANISTAN / GEN. MCKIERNAN COMMENTS: Biden said that top military commander in Iraq said the principles of the surge could not be applied to Afghanistan, but the commander of NATO’s International Security Assistance Force Gen. David D. McKiernan said that there were principles of the surge strategy, including working with tribes, that could be applied in Afghanistan.
    10. REGULATION: Biden falsely said McCain weakened regulation — he actually called for more regulation on Fannie and Freddie.
    11. IRAQ: When Joe Biden lied when he said that John McCain was “dead wrong on Iraq”, because Joe Biden shared the same vote to authorize the war and differed on the surge strategy where they John McCain has been proven right.
    12. TAX INCREASES: Biden said Americans earning less than $250,000 wouldn’t see higher taxes, but the Obama-Biden tax plan would raise taxes on individuals making $200,000 or more.
    13. BAILOUT: Biden said the economic rescue legislation matches the four principles that Obama laid out, but in reality it doesn’t meet two of the four principles that Obama outlined on Sept. 19, which were that it include an emergency economic stimulus package, and that it be part of “part of a globally coordinated effort with our partners in the G-20.”
    14. REAGAN TAX RATES: Biden is wrong in saying that under Obama, Americans won’t pay any more in taxes then they did under Reagan.


  2. Hi Asenath! Welcome to the blog! I’m not sure where you are getting your facts for most of your statements. Could you cite your sources, please? Of course, it would be best if you could provide links to your sources. Given how much nonsense is promulgated as truth these days, I’m sure you can understand why it’s important to cite sources when making controversial statements. Besides which, citing your sources is common courtesy to the people who might wish to take your statements seriously.


  3. asenath1az : sources?

    It’s just another drive by Paul. But the good news is it means you’ve reached a new level of prominence. Not every blogger gets drive-by commentators.


  4. “drive by” sources are from…
    McCain headquarters in Arizona via my email, I’m a volunteer and supporter.
    As far as Republican talking points..I’m a registered Democrate..fighting the liberal controlled House of Representatives and their agenda for Socialism.


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