joe biden & paul ryan

Vice President Joe Biden and Republican challenger Paul Ryan

*The debate between the two Vice Presidential candidates Joe Biden and Paul Ryan for the upcoming general election on Nov. 6 is now history.

UPDATE …

It’s now the morning after and the consensus appears to be – especially among Democrats and supporters – that Vice President Joe Biden bested Paul Ryan in the head to head political matchup.

Biden did everything President Obama didn’t do in his match up with challenger Mitt Romey. Even the president liked what he saw.

“I’m going to make a special point of saying that I thought Joe Biden was terrific tonight,” President Obama told reporters after stepping off Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland, on his way back to the White House after a day of campaigning in Florida.

Overall, as CNN reports, it was a combative debate Thursday evening between Vice President Biden and Republican challenger Ryan came down to the issue of trust.

The running mates to President Barack Obama and Republican Mitt Romney in next month’s presidential election each challenged the other’s facts and claims in the 90-minute nationally televised debate that was their only showdown of the campaign.

Ryan repeatedly criticized the Obama administration as taking the nation in the wrong direction by hindering economic recovery and weakening its influence around the world.

“We’re heading in the wrong direction,” Ryan said of the administration’s economic polices. “This is not what a real recovery looks like.”

He also repeated several times, in reference to the recent terrorist attack on a U.S. diplomatic compound in Libya and other anti-American protests, that “what we are watching on our TV screens is the unraveling of the Obama foreign policy.”

Biden called several of Ryan’s remarks “malarkey” and challenged Americans to trust their common sense when judging proposals by the Republican challengers.

The tax and entitlement reforms proposed by Romney and Ryan would harm the middle class and favor the wealthy, Biden said in seeking to depict Republicans as protectors of the privileged.

“You think these guys are going to go out there and cut those loopholes?” Biden asked about unspecified moves by Romney and Ryan to balance tax cuts they promise.

On the topic of reforming the Medicare program for senior citizens, which Romney and Ryan seek to partially privatize, Biden referred to a Ryan proposal to provide partial government payment for seniors in the future to buy private health care.

“Folks, use your common sense. Who do you trust on this?” Biden said, saying Ryan’s plan would increase Medicare costs to recipients by $6,000 a year. Ryan disputed the claim, which was based on a proposal that he has since altered.

The debate before the November 6 election pitted Biden, 69, and his almost four decades of experience in national politics against the 42-year-old Ryan, a 14-year congressional veteran who rose to the chairmanship of the powerful House Budget Committee.

Despite Biden’s more extensive experience, CNN polling showed 55% of respondents expected Ryan to win the debate, and both campaigns tried to downplay expectations for their candidate ahead of time.

Privately, senior Democrats told CNN they believed a strong showing by Biden could help the Democratic ticket, but wouldn’t be enough to erase problems created by Obama’s lackluster performance at last week’s first of three presidential debates.

Obama and Romney will square off again on October 16 in New York and October 22 in Florida.

Read/learn more at CNN.

Watch highlights from Thursday night’s Vice Presidential debate: