10.12.12 6:02 PM ET
The Attempted Gore-ing of Biden
They're trying to do to Joe Biden what was done to Al Gore in 2000. It won't work.
Everything at this level of spectacle is about existing narratives. Gore's heavy sighs played into an existing story line about his alleged elitism. What existing narrative to Biden's chuckles feed? None. That he can be a little over the top. So what?
Besides, people don't care enough about a vice-presidential debate to think about it for three days after. Time could prove me wrong about this, but I don't think so. There's too much other stuff going on--it's already time to think about the next prez debate, and it's an amazing weekend of sports starting tonight.
The basic lesson is, people who spend too much time whining about mannerisms and moderators know deep down that their guy lost. Liberals complained last week about Romney's assertiveness (I did not) and Lehrer's lack of control (I did, but I've devoted two posts now to trying to clear up why that wasn't a partisan complaint but a substantive one about debates). Now it's the right's turn. It isn't going to change things.