It's the showdown everyone's been waiting for.
Sarah Palin and Joe Biden face off on the issues.
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Debate Night in America: Vice Presidential Debate
Tonight, beginning 8p ET
Suzanne Malveaux | BIO
CNN White House Correspondent
I talked to Obama campaign spokeswoman Linda Douglass who just arrived at debate site. Nothing surprising regarding Joe Biden, just some points:
– Biden is feeling “pretty relaxed.”
– He has lots of family members coming to the debate (he’s got famously big family.)
– “Biden will make a clear convincing case that the Obama-Biden ticket will bring change from the last 8 years of the failed Bush policies.”
– “Will provide a sharp contrast to the McCain-Palin ticket, and argue that the opposing candidate is more of the same.”
– They “expect Palin will deliver strong sharp, pointed attacks.”
– Biden will respond by “trying to stay connected to voters. He’ll do his best to avoid getting drawn into game-playing.”
– “He’s going to be substantive and meaty. There will be a lot of meat on the bone.”
– Biden will talk about how “US has frayed alliances around the world,” that Iraq was a disaster.
– Biden will make the case this election is going to be about “core issues,” how people live their lives-pay for their homes, take out loans, educate their children, tend to their health, etc.
– “Biden will not go after Palin’s experience” or lack thereof.
– “Biden will not get personal.”
– As for the issue of debating a woman, Biden has talked with female senators about the sensitivities but Douglass says “he’s not that concerned about that.”
“He’s gone head-to-head debating strong, smart women; Feinstein, Mikulski, Kay Bailey Hutchison…”
“His wife has a PhD and is one of his closest advisors. His top staff in his campaign is women. He’s comfortable with strong women.”
– As for the expectations game-Douglass continues to play, saying “Palin is a formidable opponent,” “very tough, very effective communicator,” “very polished communicator.”
"She does especially well with prepared remarks, as we saw at the Republican Convention,” Douglass said.
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