1. It was a Huge Improvement from the Presidential Debate
The debate between Republican Mike Pence and Democrat Kamala Harris was similar to most presidential/vice presidential debates in modern times – no name-calling, no shouting, no constant interrupting. No one was called a “clown.” “Shut up” was never muttered. There were points … and counterpoints. Pence and Harris are skilled at this.
Debate rules were mostly followed, even if they were often stretched. Parents could watch it safely with their children, who likely would then fall asleep from boredom.
In other words, the Pence-Harris debate was the polar opposite of the first Trump-Biden debate. That’s good news.
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2. It Likely Didn’t Change Anything
Each side walked away happy. The Biden camp – their candidate leading in the polls – believed Harris held her own and scored several points. The Trump camp – reeling from the first debate as well as from a White House COVID-19 outbreak – believed Pence made a solid case against the Biden record and for Trump’s re-election. Former Republican Sen. Rick Santorum, on CNN after the debate, said Pence did “everything he needed to do.”
But vice presidential debates rarely change an election, and this one likely didn’t, either. A CNN poll of debate-watchers said 59 percent believed Harris won, while 38 percent said Pence won. But there was a gender split, with men (48-46 percent) saying Pence won and women (69-30 percent) believing Harris won.
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