Joe Biden and Paul Ryan: The Candidates You Don't Know

Paul Ryan and Joe Biden
On election tickets, the presidential candidates usually get all the glory. They, after all, are the top names, the main acts, the men who are fighting for the chance to lead America. The bottom of the ticket, on the other hand, is usually filled with someone a little further out, a pinch-hitter brought in to garner a few votes or sew up a key constituency. But when it comes to debates, the bottom of the ticket is often where the action is. After all, the president has to look presidential -- dignified, responsible, above the fray. The vice president, on the other hand, can have some fun.

This certainly appears to be the case this year, as Paul Ryan, one of the Republicans' biggest economic heroes, faces off against Joe Biden, a notoriously outspoken (and gaffe-prone) Democrat. Pundits on both sides are already handicapping the contest, comparing the strengths and weaknesses of both candidates and waiting for what -- finally -- promises to be a barnburner of a debate.

In honor of tonight's festivities, we've put together a collection of candidate trivia, a glimpse of the ways the candidates differ -- and the surprising similarities they share. If you're interested in the two men who are fighting to be a heartbeat away from the presidency, or just looking for something to do until the start of the "Thrilla in Vanilla," here is our comparison of America's candidates for the second-highest office in the land!

Bruce Watson is a senior features writer for DailyFinance. You can reach him by e-mail at, or follow him on Twitter at @bruce1971.

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Heard this morning that even though the Cost of Living has gone up by 4%, Senior Citizens will receive a 2% increase, which will amount to either $12.00 or $24.00 per month. Wonder if the Congress and Mr "What Me Worry" and his Czars will receive the same dollar amount increase; after all they say that they want fairness, so this would be a good time for them to put their money where their mouths are.. We pay the Congress One Hundred & Nienty Some Dollars Per Year, and as thier employers, we should be paid more so that we can afford to pay our employees. Also heard that Medicare Health Insurance Payments are going up to over One Hundred Dollars Per Month in 2013 and Over Two Hundred Dollars Per Month in 2014, DUE - TO - OBAMA - CARE. Also heard that Senior Citizens Are Going To Find It Harder To Find Doctors Who Will Take Medicare. And to think We Pay These People !!! And these people in government calim to be working for the American People!!!

October 15 2012 at 12:01 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

If the American People Do Not Understand That There Is Something Wrong With Joe Biden's Mind After Seeing For Themselves The Way He Acted When Being Questioned About Important Matters Of The Day, Which Should Be Of Importance To A American Vice President And The Way He Laughed And Carried On Like Somebody Half In A Bag, Then They Will Never Understand ! May God Have Mercy On Owr Nation!

October 13 2012 at 5:50 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply

As the age of insanity rolls along, lying has reached a new level in political activism. Apparently, you can lie freely now. Lying is allowed. On any subject. And there is no shame to the lie. So I decided to talk to Dr. R.H. Flutes, head of the Lying Institute of America, to explain the lying epidemic that has been sweeping this country.

Q: In the past, if you were caught in a lie, you were discredited.

Dr: Yes, that was the old-fashioned way of thinking. Today a creative lie is worthy of celebration.

Q: But a lie is a lie, isn't it?

Dr: What is so wonderful about the truth? Truth has been around for thousands of years and what has it gotten us? Look at the RNC the other night. Glorious! One lie after another. Did you hear the cheers? Truth is hardly as exciting! And you can't persuade people as easily with the truth. Truth is a harsh medicine. A good lie is soothing to the soul.

Q: Do you teach these lying principles?

Dr: We do have a six-week course that opens the door to creative lying. But that only scratches the surface. But to get the best techniques, you need the extended course.

Q: What are some of the basic teachings of lying?

Dr: Conviction is very important. You can't lie in a halfhearted tone. A lie needs strength in voice commitment and body language. Take Paul Ryan's speech. Brilliant. He lied on almost every subject, but he was committed, elegant. His lies soared. He is a New Age liar. If he keeps his lying edge, he should be a powerful political figure for years to come.

Q: You don't find that alarming?

Dr: Alarming? A good liar is worth his weight in gold. The role of a politician is to convince others to follow. If lying works better than truth, why handicap yourself? No one celebrates someone who is truthful anymore. Winning is the ultimate prize. Is there any glory to telling the truth and losing?

Q: What did you think were some of the lying highlights of the convention?

DR. I thought there was something truly exhilarating to watch a packed arena of 30 or 40 thousand people cheering the idea of having their healthcare taken away. They were so convinced by all the lies about healthcare that everyone in the arena was willing to give up all healthcare protection. It was a wonderful sight to see. And here's the best part: the lies were so well constructed, that you didn't even have to offer an alternative health care plan. Just the idea of not having healthcare was enough to bring the people to their feet. That was a A+ on the lying chart. Almost brought tears of joy to my eyes.

October 13 2012 at 3:41 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to chris1011's comment

The copy and paste poster child strikes again.

Obamas a fiasco

October 13 2012 at 10:51 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

I know who they are...the problem is.. does America? Let me enlighten you as to just what too many Americans don't understand because our nation is now #21 out of 29 in world ranking in literacy. Joe Biden says he is a good Catholic and lives by the tenets and doctrine of his religion...he doesn't! Joe Biden is a confused man as to meanings, and he should know that social needs can not be prioritized over moral competence in the Catholic Church. And Joe should know that Roe Vs Wade (abortion on demand for any reason) violates every moral tenet and doctrine of the Catholic Church. And is punishable under Canon Law 1329 (automatic excommunication). And Joe's comments to the Chinese that he understood their mandated abortion program is just more evidence that Joe Biden is a morally incompetent Catholic. And ,sadly, partnered with President Obama,our nation is heading toward a secular ideology of the worst kind. Now let's examine why...Barack Obama : The man who wants to replace God. I believe that our nation was founded and has existed as a nation under God, the creator, as written in the Declaration of independence. I believe that the Declaration of Independence, as written, reflects a great moral competence. And, that these words are the foundation that best represents the ideology of the vast majority of all Americans. But, unfortunately, President Obama has publically declared his disdain for the word, GOD. On Sept.15, at the Hispanic Caucus, President Obama, reading from a teleprompter, deliberately left out the words, God, the Creator, when quoting the Declaration of Independence as to our unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. And in 2009, in Turkey, President Obama, declared that we are not a Christine nation, a Jewish nation or even an Islamic nation. And proceeded to say that we were a nation held together by common values and principles…and, again, he leaves out all mention of God. It is clear to most Americans, who see God as an important part of their lives, that President Obama’s agenda includes the removal of God from any importance as to who we are as a nation. And more unsettling, is the fact that President Obama knew that the Democratic Party had intended to remove, from its platform, the word, ”God-given,” or any mention of God. And when Obama realized the negative response it was receiving, he tried to make it look that he didn’t know of it. It is clear that Obama’s intention is to secularize the ideology of America. His ideology is clearly contrary to the ideology upon which our nation was founded…and, in which, I believe. And there is much more evidence and facts concerning Obama’s presidency that disturb me, especially in his efforts to reduce the importance of God, conscience, and moral competence. His complete support of Roe vs Wade, both legislatively and by proclamation. Roe vs Wade: a law that allows abortions on demand for any reason. A concept that violates the tenets of a morall

October 13 2012 at 12:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Joe Biden showed at the debate what a lie it is that liberals are tolerant and respect the other persons point of view.

October 13 2012 at 9:29 AM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply

So Joe Biden says he "says what he means". In the 2008 debates Joe said that Obama was unqualifed to be president and there was no time for on the job training. Joe also said that the last 4 years under Obama have buried the middle class. Yep Joe says what he means!!

October 13 2012 at 9:27 AM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply

Joe Biden forgot to change into his clown outfit and put on his red nose at the debate on thursday. I bet he was the class clown when he was in school too.

Joe lived up to his name Joe the buffoon Biden.

October 13 2012 at 9:24 AM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

in my humble opinion ryan showed the respect that a vice president should be given.but he did not get that in matter how much you spin it the ones who watched the debate saw it for themselves.state your points but dont smirk and laugh at points being dicussed.this was not a comedy show.the future of our countyry is in the hands of these people it was so distracting .

October 12 2012 at 11:46 AM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply

Sure we are going to cut taxes 20% across the board increase military presence repeal Obamacare, replace it with Romneycare and reduce the deficit all on the first day in the White House. How can we do all that you ask?
We have voodoo Reagenomics and magic underwear wooo hooo !

October 12 2012 at 9:10 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Biden acted like a smug, bombastic, conceited jerk. He exhibited knowledge in some topics and was either lying or ignorant in others like recent terrorist attack.

October 12 2012 at 8:28 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply