Full video of the debate between Vice President Joe Biden and Congressman Paul Ryan
For all the verbal combat, the encounter illuminated that the differences between an Obama Administration and a Romney alternative are not as great as advertised.
That was particularly evident on foreign policy, where the concern for many is that a Romney presidency will lead to another misguided overseas adventure. I doubt that concern was eased last night, but at the same time, the debate was notable for how Ryan and Biden effectively converged on a "get tough" posture.
There was nothing on China or Russia, let alone the vanished continents of South America and Africa, and --- compare this to past campaigns --- nothing on Europe and NATO. The international economy, arguably the most important issue right now, did not make even a cameo appearance. Instead, this was a conversation about who could be the harder man over the Middle East and Iran.