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  1. PHEW Biden and Ryan Clash Saul Loeb / Getty Images

    1. Biden and Ryan Clash

    Forget their performance at Thursday night’s debate—do the candidates have any regrets about this campaign overall? “There are things that occurred in this campaign—in every campaign there are things we regret,” Biden said. “[But] my record stands for itself. It’s all about the middle class ...The president and I are not going to rest until that playing field is leveled. Until they have a clear shot ... peace of mind. Until they can turn to their kids and say, ‘Honey, it’s going to be OK.’ That’s what it’s all about.” Ryan responded with a much more rehearsed-sounding closing than Biden, saying, “Romney and I want to earn your support. We’re offering real reforms. Romney is uniquely qualified to get this job done ... The choice is clear.”

    October 11, 2012 10:34 PM

  2. CHOICE Ryan and Biden Talk Abortion Saul Loeb / AFP-Getty Images

    2. Ryan and Biden Talk Abortion

    Well, the moderator asked for a personal answer, we got personal answers. “My wife and I, when we had the 7 week ultrasound for our first child ... our baby was in the shape of a bean... to this day, we have nicknamed our Liza Bean,” Ryan said. “I believe that life begins at conception … our position is to oppose abortion, with exceptions in cases of rape and incest.” Biden responded saying “With regards to abortion, I accept my church's take—life begins with conception. But I refuse to impose that on others ... unlike my friend here.” Raddatz asked if people who are pro-choice should be worried if Romney is elected. “The next president will get 1 or 2 Supreme Court nominations,” Biden warned. “That’s how close Roe v. Wade is.”

    October 11, 2012 10:23 PM

  3. Syria Biden: We Don't Need Another War Rick Wilkins / AP Photo

    3. Biden: We Don't Need Another War

    Moderator Martha Raddatz moved the debate to Syria Thursday night, asking why intervention wasn’t merited on grounds of human-rights concerns. “The last thing America needs is to get into another ground war in the Middle East. They are the facts,” Biden repeated firmly, not for the first time. “Every time Romney is asked about this he has a lot of verbiage but says he wouldn’t do anything different.” Ryan disagreed: “What would we do differently? We wouldn’t refer to Bashar Assad as a reformer when he’s killing his civilians with Russian weapons.” Biden responded by calling out Ryan’s lack of specific alternatives. “What would my friend do differently? If you notice he never answers the question.”

    October 11, 2012 10:15 PM

  4. HOORAY Jobless Claims Hit Four-Year Low Joe Raedle / Getty Images

    4. Jobless Claims Hit Four-Year Low

    Good news from the Labor Department: the number of people seeking first-time unemployment fell this week, hitting a four-year low, according to figures reported on Thursday. There were 339,000 new jobless claims last week, a 30,000 decrease from last week’s figure of 369,000. It brought down the four-week moving average to 364,000, a decrease of 11,500 from the previous average. The claims figure is the lowest since February 2008 and undershot economists’ expectations of 370,000—and also represents a 63,000 drop in initial jobless claims from one year ago.

    October 11, 2012 9:56 AM

  5. STALLION Ryan Aide: Photos ‘Poor Judgment’ Tom Williams, CQ Roll Call / Getty Images

    5. Ryan Aide: Photos ‘Poor Judgment’

    The only “poor judgment” was keeping those weapons of mass destruction hidden for so long, am I right?! Paul Ryan’s aide isn’t too pleased that Time magazine published pictures of the candidate wearing a red baseball hat, curling dumbbells, and seemingly channeling Saved by the Bell’s Zack Morris and every generic self-shot MySpace picture of the early 2000s. The photos were taken for Time’s “Person of the Year” issue, and the magazine said that it never promised the photos wouldn’t be published. But are those rippling biceps strong enough to knock out Biden?

    October 11, 2012 6:13 PM

  6. Yemen

    6. U.S. Embassy Employee Killed

    A Yemeni man was shot and killed by gunmen on his way to work at the U.S. Embassy in Sana early Thursday morning. The car carrying Qassem Aqlan, who headed an embassy security team, was shot at by masked attackers on a motorcycle. “This (assassination) operation has the fingerprints of al Qaeda which carried out similar operations before,” a source told Reuters. Assassination attempts have been frequent since Yemen’s Army cleared Islamist fighters out of many towns earlier this year, while the U.S. has been on high alert for its embassy staff overseas since the ambassador to Libya was killed with three others on Sept. 11 in Benghazi.

    October 11, 2012 6:40 AM

  7. EARFUL OF REGRET Fleeing NYC Slasher Left Apology Seth Wenig / AP Photo

    7. Fleeing NYC Slasher Left Apology

    This doesn’t do much. Orlando Orea, the man suspected of cutting off a youth soccer coach’s ear before slashing him to death in New York City, left an apology note at his Queens home before fleeing to Mexico. The letter “basically makes a statement that he’s sorry,” says Police Commissioner Ray Kelly. Orea managed to board a flight to Mexico just hours before he was linked to the murder. Currently, the NYPD, Justice Department, and Interpol are collaborating on the manhunt in Mexico. Have they checked all the Van Gogh galleries?

    October 11, 2012 5:20 PM

  8. OOPSIE Google Search Mocks Romney Steve Pope / Getty Images

    8. Google Search Mocks Romney

    Team Obama got a good chuckle Wednesday when it was revealed that a Google Image search of the phrase “completely wrong” yielded a series of photos of GOP challenger Mitt Romney. A spokesperson for the search giant says that there was no partisan tinkering involved in the alternately hilarious or embarrassing results, depending on which side of the aisle you sit. Instead, the gallery is a result of Google analytics, which surfaces images tied to phrases used most often in news headlines and search terms. In this case, the algorithms were responding to the glut of coverage of Romney’s statement last week that he was “completely wrong” to call 47 percent of Americans “victims” dependent on the government.

    October 11, 2012 1:49 PM

  9. MEAN GIRLS Bynes Wanted Lohan’s Roles Jason Merritt / Getty Images

    9. Bynes Wanted Lohan’s Roles

    The child-star war rages on. First former Disney darling Lindsay Lohan sniped at retired Nickelodeon ingénue Amanda Bynes over Twitter for not being punished harshly enough after driving with a suspended license. Now a Hollywood Reporter profile of Bynes claims that the Hairspray actress felt she deserved Lohan’s breakout roles. She was frustrated that she couldn’t break out of the teen genre, an executive says. “Her frustration was, ‘I could have played this role; I could have played that role. I'm not getting the Lindsay Lohan roles.’” Bynes announced her retirement from acting in 2010, after an attempt to break into “sexy films” ended with her being replaced in the raunchy comedy Hall Pass. Currently, Bynes is playing the role of tabloid target, after multiple recent run-ins with the law.

    October 11, 2012 4:29 PM

  10. KEEPING IT IN THE FAMILY Bobbi Kristina Brown Is Engaged Maury Phillips / Getty Images

    10. Bobbi Kristina Brown Is Engaged

    Whitney Houston was known for tumultuous relationships with the men in her life, whether it was with R&B bad boy Bobby Brown or Brandy’s lil’ bro, Ray J. Now Houston’s daughter is following suit with a scandalous romance of her own: with her adopted brother, Nick Gordon. Rumors about a romance between the two have been swirling since Houston’s death, but a new teaser for the A&E reality series The Houstons: On Our Own confirms that the young couple is engaged. Houston adopted Gordon when he was 12 years old, and Bobbi Kristina and Gordon were reportedly raised as siblings.

    October 11, 2012 1:32 PM

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  12. ABDUCTION Body Found in Jessica Ridgeway Search Ed Andrieski / AP Photo

    11. Body Found in Jessica Ridgeway Search

    A potential breakthrough was made Wednesday night in the search for Jessica Ridgeway, the 10-year-old girl from Colorado who was allegedly abducted Friday during her walk to school. Police removed a body from Pattridge Park in Arvada, an area known for its abandoned coal mines, though it’s still unclear if it is Ridgeway. Though police confirmed the discovery of the body, they haven’t revealed the gender or approximate age. Police are exploring the possibility of a connection between Ridgeway’s abduction and that of an 11-year-old girl from Wyoming who was kidnapped and then released after several hours on Monday.

     

    October 11, 2012 10:20 AM

  13. Bailout Lohan Loaned Her Mother $40,000 AP Photo (2)

    12. Lohan Loaned Her Mother $40,000

    No wonder LiLo is always so stressed out. It appears the source of Wednesday’s argument between Lindsay Lohan and her mother has been revealed: TMZ reported on Thursday that after the bank tried to foreclose on her Long Island house in 2010, Lindsay Lohan’s mother, Dina, asked her daughter for help. JPMorgan Chase tried to foreclose on the house when Dina fell behind on payments. A new payment agreement was reached, and Dina turned to Lindsay. Recently, Dina fell behind again and needed to ask Lindsay for an additional $40,000, which was reportedly the source of the argument that resulted in police being called yesterday. Dina also turned to Lindsay for help paying her little brother’s tuition. 

    October 11, 2012 7:57 AM

  14. Halloween Big Bird Costumes Selling Big Costumecraze.com

    13. Big Bird Costumes Selling Big

    Mitt Romney is definitely doing his part to boost the economy. Following Mitt Romney’s debate comments, interest in Big Bird costumes has skyrocketed. Costumecraze.com said that there has been a 500 percent increase in sales for the “Sassy Big Bird Adult Costume” since the debate. Halloween Express has had hundreds of searches for Big Bird costumes since the debate, and a spokesman for Costume World said that all of their stores are selling out of Big Bird costumes—and doing especially well is the costume pair featuring Big Bird and Romney “with a machine gun doing Big Bird in.” But Big Bird is alone out there–the “Sassy Cookie Monster” and “Sassy Elmo” costumes have seen no increase in sales.

    October 11, 2012 9:18 AM

  15. Austerity Lagarde: Greece Needs More Time Toru Yamanaka, AFP / Getty Images

    14. Lagarde: Greece Needs More Time

    Greece should have more time to meet its budget targets, said International Monetary Fund director Christine Lagarde in Tokyo on Wednesday. Lagarde called for an extra two years for the country to meet the terms of its bailouts, directly disagreeing with the wishes of Germany and other fiscal hawks. “It is sometimes better, given the circumstances…to have a bit more time,” Lagarde said. Such an extension could add $25.75 million to the new financing bill.

    October 11, 2012 6:32 AM

  16. MENINGITIS Vaccine Company Has Sordid History Stephan Savoia / AP Photo

    15. Vaccine Company Has Sordid History

    We might be more understanding if the saying was “there’s a second time for everything.” Apparently, the compounding pharmacy that is linked to the meningitis outbreak that has killed 12 and infected 130 may have done this before. In 2004, the New England Compounding Center settled a lawsuit alleging it was responsible for the death of an 83-year-old man infected with a different form of meningitis, possibly by a shot produced by the company. To add to that, a drug company also owned by Ameridose was accused this year of mixing sterile and non-sterile products in the warehouse. And just this summer, an organization that links hospitals with drug suppliers cancelled a contract with Ameridose, saying their poor quality control “rose to a level of concern for patient safety.”

    October 10, 2012 8:06 PM

  17. Denied State Dept. Rejected Security Requests Brendan Hoffman / Getty Images

    16. State Dept. Rejected Security Requests

    State Department officials acknowledged that they rejected security requests in Libya in the weeks leading up to the Sept. 11 attack in Benghazi during a congressional hearing on Wednesday. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Charlene Lamb admitted to opposing a request to extend the stay of a security team that had assisted Ambassador Christopher Stevens and other diplomats between February and August, though she said it would not have made a difference in Benghazi. The security officer who made the request said he interpreted the decision to mean “there was going to be too much political cost.”

    October 11, 2012 7:09 AM

  18. THE DIRTY DETAILS Lance in ‘Sophisticated’ Doping Ring Riccardo S. Savi

    17. Lance in ‘Sophisticated’ Doping Ring

    It might soon get harder for the world’s greatest cyclist to live strong and prosper. The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency said Wednesday that it will make public its entire file on Lance Armstrong, which reportedly says that he was central to one of the most “sophisticated” doping rings in sports history. Armstrong's friend George Hincapie has also come forward and admit to doping. The report will include sworn testimony from 26 people—including former teammates who implicated themselves in the doping ring in order to nail the seven-time Tour de France winner. The agency’s evidence, which climbs to more than 1,000 pages, will be posted Wednesday afternoon on its website. “It’s shocking, it’s disappointing,” says Travis Tygart, chief executive of the agency, of the report. “But we did our job.”

    October 10, 2012 12:05 PM

  19. ‘Billions of Dollars’ Stan Lee Media Sues Disney Kevin Winter / Getty Images

    18. Stan Lee Media Sues Disney

    Stan Lee Media, which claims to control the rights to Marvel characters, is suing the Walt Disney Co. and seeking “billions of dollars of profits.” The company claims that Stan Lee, who created many Marvel characters, gave it rights to those characters in 1998, before assigning those same rights to Marvel Enterprises a month later. Disney bought Marvel Enterprises in 2009 for $4.3 billion and proceeded to make a number of hit movies. The Avengers alone grossed more than $1.5 billion at the box office this summer. Walt Disney said in a statement, “This lawsuit is without merit. It arises out of the same core facts and legal claims that have been rejected by three federal district court judges.”

    October 11, 2012 7:50 AM

  20. ESCALATION Turkey-Syria Tensions Escalate Louisa Gouliamaki

    19. Turkey-Syria Tensions Escalate

    It doesn’t look like Turkey and Syria will mend their fences anytime soon. Turkish fighter jets forced a Syrian passenger plane suspected of carrying “nonmilitary cargo” to land in Ankara Wednesday, and threatened increasingly forceful retaliation if Syria continues its cross-border shelling. Turkey’s state television said two warplanes were dispatched to intercept a Syrian Airbus A320 en route from Moscow to Damascus with 35 passengers and two members in tow—far fewer than the plane’s capacity. Turkish authorities seized military communication devices on board before permitting the plane to continue its journey. Turkey’s foreign minister declined to say what exactly was seized, though he declared the material “troublesome.”

    October 10, 2012 6:23 PM

  21. CLOSING IN Obama Pollster: ‘Polls Don’t Matter’ AP Photo (2)

    20. Obama Pollster: ‘Polls Don’t Matter’

    What’s the order of those stages of grief again? The Obama campaign seems to be in denial, shrugging off a recent drop in the polls that shows Romney pulling ahead of Obama nationally. David Simas, director of opinion research and Obama’s poll guru, said in a campaign webcast for volunteers Wednesday that polls won’t predict the election. “Polls will go up, polls will go down. At the end of the day, polls don’t matter,” the pollster said.  He also reassured that if the race were today, Obama would “absolutely be reelected.” Based on what data?

    October 10, 2012 10:59 PM

  22. Downward Spiral S&P Downgrades Spain Dani Pozo, AFP / Getty Images

    21. S&P Downgrades Spain

    Ratings agency Standard & Poor’s has lowered Spain’s debt rating from BBB+ to BBB-, the rating just one level above junk-bond status. The agency also lowered the country’s short-term sovereign level from A-2 to A-3 and assigned a negative outlook to its long-term rating. Spain recently announced its fifth austerity package in under a year and requested $129 billion in aid in June. The country also plans to borrow 207.2 billion Euros, or about, $266 billion, next year, which will boost its debt load to 91 percent of economic output. Back in 2007, the rate was only 36 percent.

    October 11, 2012 6:30 AM

  23. Fallen Hero Triathlons Turn Armstrong Away Javier Soriano, AFP / Getty Images

    22. Triathlons Turn Armstrong Away

    Looks like there might not be a second act for Lance Armstrong in triathlons. While the scathing report released from the United States Anti-Doping Agency referred specifically to cycling, it may have repercussions with Armstrong’s ability to compete in triathlons as well. The investigation found that Armstrong’s professional relationship with Dr. Michele Ferrari, who received a lifetime ban from the agency in July, “continued even into preparation for Armstrong’s new career in triathlon.” Armstrong was already banned from the Ironman World Championship, and he is barred from any competitions that are governed by Olympic governing bodies, though some have given up certifications to allow him to compete.

    October 11, 2012 9:13 AM

  24. Rebound Romney Seen as Stronger Leader Jim Watson, AFP / Getty Images

    23. Romney Seen as Stronger Leader

    President Obama really might want to be awake at his next debate. Following last week’s debate, a poll released Thursday of voters in Colorado, Virginia, and Wisconsin found that about two-thirds of the voters in each state say that Mitt Romney has strong leadership qualities–higher numbers than say the same about Obama. But Obama still has a slight overall lead in the key swing states of Virginia and Wisconsin, while he and Romney are tied in Colorado. Additionally, almost 60 percent of Virginia and Wisconsin voters say Obama is trustworthy and honest, compared with just 47 percent who think the same of Romney.

    October 11, 2012 6:28 AM

  25. PENNIES FROM HEAVEN Sulzberger Heirs Want to Sell Stock Anthony Camerano / AP Photo

    24. Sulzberger Heirs Want to Sell Stock

    When late New York Times publisher Arthur Ochs Sulzberger died on Sept. 29, he left behind a $70.2 million estate that included $41 million in stock held in The New York Times Co.—but a report out on Thursday suggests his children want to sell their stock in the company. Sulzberger’s four children were named executors of the estate, and court records show that three of the siblings have waived their rights in a move to facilitate the sale of those Times Co. shares. It’s unclear whether they hope to unload some or all of the stock. Once the sale is complete, the Sulzbergers are asking the court to allow all the children to serve as executors on the rest of the estate, including a $5 million Fifth Avenue co-op and a $7 million Southampton compound.

    October 11, 2012 10:35 AM

  26. MUSCLE MAN Paul Ryan Workout Photos Released Mary Altaffer / AP Photo

    25. Paul Ryan Workout Photos Released

    The future vice bro of the United States? Paul Ryan’s dedication to the intense fitness regime P90X is by this point legendary. But when the vice-presidential candidate was profiled by Time magazine for its Person of the Year issue last December, it was barely on the national radar. So 10 months later, with Ryan in his final preparations for Thursday night’s debate against Joe Biden, Time is releasing a series of outtakes from that profile’s photo shoot—and they’re nothing short of spectacular. Sporting a backwards red baseball cap, Ryan mugs and flexes for the camera as he lifts dumbbells, putting his toned biceps—and goofy grin—on full display. Forget Big Bird, check out those big guns.

    October 11, 2012 11:30 AM

  27. Tragic Pakistani Blogger in ‘Critical’ Condition Rizwan Tabassum, AFP / Getty Images

    26. Pakistani Blogger in ‘Critical’ Condition

    The Pakistani teen activist who was shot by the Taliban is now in “critical” condition, her family said on Thursday. On Wednesday, doctors had said that 14-year-old Malala Yousufzai’s condition was “satisfactory,” but she is suffering from severe edema and doctors now plan to move her from the military hospital in Peshawar to one in Rawalpindi. Her uncle said that Yousufzai had not been conscious since she had surgery to remove the bullet more than 24 hours ago, adding that the family is “very worried.” After claiming responsibility for the shooting, the Taliban warned, “If she survives this time, she won’t next time. We will certainly kill her.”

    October 11, 2012 7:12 AM

  28. Fiction Mo Yan Wins Nobel Literature Prize STR / AFP / Getty Images

    27. Mo Yan Wins Nobel Literature Prize

    Chinese novelist Mo Yan, “one of the most famous, oft-banned and widely pirated of all Chinese writers,” has won the 2012 Nobel Prize in literature. He is known for authoring the book that is the basis for the film Red Sorghum by Zhang Yimou. The Nobel committee said Mo is a writer “who with hallucinatory realism merges folk tales, history and the contemporary.” He was a nominee for the Man Asian Literary Prize in 2007 for Big Breasts & Wide Hips. Bookmakers had Japanese novelist Haruki Murakami as the favorite to win.

    October 11, 2012 7:05 AM

  29. BOUNCE Poll: Romney Extends Lead Jim Watson / AFP / GettyImages

    28. Poll: Romney Extends Lead

    Mitt Romney’s been having a good week at least when it comes to the polls. The Republican challenger is up three points over President Obama in a Reuters/Ipsos tracking poll released on Thursday. Romney, who is now leading the president 47 percent to 44 percent among likely voters, appears to be riding a post debate bounce, erasing much of Obama’s lead in the last week. On Wednesday, Reuters’ polling data showed that Romney was up 45 to 44 percent. However, the president is maintaining a narrow lead in several of the key swing states.

    October 11, 2012 1:18 PM

  30. BE HAPPY Mitt: Uninsured Don’t Die in Apartments Manuel Balce Ceneta / AP Photo

    29. Mitt: Uninsured Won't Die at Home

    He’s an optimist. Mitt Romney has a message for the estimated 49 million Americans who don’t have health insurance: you’re not going to die in your apartment! Romney said that when those who aren’t fortunate enough to have insurance get ill, the government doesn’t say “tough luck, you’re going to die when you have a heart attack.” Instead, Mitt says, the government, a charity, or the hospital will foot the bill. A health-care group says that 26,000 uninsured die every year.

    October 11, 2012 3:50 PM

  31. OUTBREAK Meningitis Deaths Rise to 14 Getty Images News

    30. Meningitis Deaths Rise to 14

    Time to panic? Two more deaths stemming from the recent meningitis outbreak were reported Thursday, bringing the death toll blamed on the fungal disease to 14. Meanwhile, the CDC said that 14,000 may have received tainted drugs, and face health risks for 'several months." The two deaths were in Florida and Indiana. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control now puts the tally on those stricken with rare fungal meningitis at 170, up startlingly from the 137 cases listed on Wednesday. Officials are now directing their attention on reforming regulations on pharmaceutical compounding companies, as the outbreak is linked to steroid injections produced by the New England Compounding Center in Massachusetts. Some 13,000 patients may have used the infected injections.

    October 11, 2012 3:07 PM

  32. SERIOUSLY GUYS? Russia Accuses Turkey Burhan Ozbilici / AP Photo

    31. Russia Accuses Turkey

    Turkey you got some explaining to do. Tensions are high after Russia demanded that Turkey explain just what the hell it was thinking when it grounded a Syrian passenger plane flying from Moscow to Damascus. Turkey says it was intercepting Russian munitions that were headed for use by the Syrian military against the rebels. The Kremlin, as expected, is not happy with the illegal grounding. The plane was allowed to head to Syria—though not with any cargo. It’s the latest in an escalating battle between Syria and its neighbor Turkey.

    October 11, 2012 4:09 PM

  33. IT BEGINS VP Debate Kicks Off Getty Images

    32. VP Debate Kicks Off

    It was right down to business. “OK you got your waves to the families in,” moderator Martha Raddatz started off Thursday night’s debate by quickly moving on to the attack in Benghazi, Libya, which took place exactly one month ago. “Wasn’t it a massive intelligence failure?” Raddatz asked.  Vice President Biden didn’t so much answer the question directly, but praised the president’s performance and promised, “If you harm America … we will track you to the gates of hell.” Ryan had a different opinion. “This is becoming more troubling by the day,” Ryan said. “What we’re watching is the unraveling of the Obama foreign policy. And it’s making us less safe.”

    October 11, 2012 9:11 PM

  34. OFFENSE Candidates Talk Iran Eric Gay / AP Photo

    33. Candidates Talk Iran

    Ryan sure can play attack dog. The VP debate moved quickly from Benghazi to talk of Iran, and the candidate continued aggressively on the attack. “When Obama was elected we had enough nuclear material to make one bomb, now they can make five,” Ryan said. “It’s because the administration has no authority … they have watered-down sanctions, stopped sanctions. They say the military option is on the table, but it’s not being viewed as credible. Under a Romney administration we will have credibility on this issue. Biden remained calm at first but then grew more impassioned. “In terms of how close the Iranians are to getting a nuclear weapon … they are a good ways away,” Biden began, adding firmly “We will not let them acquire a nuclear weapon. Period.”

    October 11, 2012 9:19 PM

  35. Health Ryan Attacks Obamacare SAUL LOEB

    34. Ryan Attacks Obamacare

    It’s not his most popular opinion, with Florida voters anyway. Paul Ryan put forth his Medicare alternative Thursday night, and attacked Obamacare. “It takes 716 billion from Medicare to spend on Obamacare …They got caught with their hand in the cookie jar.” Ryan also alluded to Obamacare changing end-of-life care, and leading to death panels.  “I heard that death-panel argument from Sarah Palin. Seems like I hear it at every vice presidential debate,” Biden responded. “Any senior out there, ask yourself ... do you have more benefits today? You do … folks, follow your instincts on this one … use your common sense. Who do you trust on this?”

    October 11, 2012 9:44 PM

  36. UNEMPLOYMENT VP Debate Turns to Jobs Win McNamee

    35. VP Debate Turns to Jobs

    On to the economy. Vice President Biden brought up Romney’s infamous 47 percent comments Thursday night saying “I’ve had it up to here with this notion—47%—it’s time they contribute a bit,” Biden said. “They should be signing a pledge to middle class saying we’re going to level the playing field.” Biden also praised Obama’s handling of the economic crisis, and the rescuing of GE. “Did they inherit a tough situation? Absolutely,” Ryan responded. In defense of Romney’s 47 percent gaffe, Ryan had this to say: “I think the vice president very well knows that sometimes the words don’t come out of your mouth the right way.”

    October 11, 2012 9:32 PM

  37. SPENDING Biden: They’re Holding Tax Cuts Hostage Saul Loeb / Getty Images

    36. Biden: They’re Holding Tax Cuts Hostage

    From death panels to taxes. “We’re going to move on to a very simple question, and something tells me I won’t get a simple answer," moderator Martha Raddatz said.  “If you are elected, who will pay more in taxes and who will pay less?” “The middle class will pay less and people making million or more will begin to pay more,” Biden answered, adding that the Bush tax cuts would expire, while the middle-class tax cut will be permanently extended. Raddatz asked Ryan how a Romney administration would pay for their proposed 20% across-the-board tax cut, plus an increase in defense spending. “You don’t cut defense by a trillion dollars,” Ryan responded. “We’re going to cut 80,000 soldiers if these cuts go through. Our navy will be the smallest it’s been since before WWI.” Biden replied saying “We need a smaller, leaner army … we don’t need more tanks. That was the recommendation of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.”

    October 11, 2012 9:58 PM

  38. AFGHANISTAN Candidates Debate Current War Saul Loeb / AFP-Getty Images

    37. Candidates Debate Current War

    Oh right, we’re at war. But Vice President Biden was firm Thursday night that that won’t be the case much longer. “[Even] If the measures the military has taken do not take hold, we will not continue. We are leaving in 2014. Period.” Ryan didn’t so much attack the Obama administration’s plan to pull out, as the fact that it was announced. “We agree with the timeline,” Ryan conceded. “But you don’t want to broadcast to your enemies ‘Put this date on your calendar,’” Ryan said. “What we don’t want to do is embolden our enemies to hold and wait out for us.” Biden retorted firmly, saying, “Martha that’s a bizarre statement. Forty-nine of our allies signed on to this position—49 said OUT IN 2014 … Nothing political about this.”

    October 11, 2012 10:07 PM