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eyes on the U.S.

Joe Biden And Paul Ryan Duel To Lively Draw In VP Debate



Joe Biden and Paul Ryan battled through a tough vice presidential debate Thursday, with commentators largely suggesting that the result was a draw.

Immediate polls showed that voters were split on who won the debate with CNN putting Ryan at 48% and Biden on 44%. CNBC also swayed toward Ryan, with 50% of respondents, to Biden's 36%, while CBS gave 50% to Biden and 31% to Ryan.

As the only showdown between the vice presidential nominees, the debate Thursday featured a wide variety of topics, but wound up largely dominated by foreign policy, with Biden and Ryan sparring over Iran, Afghanistan and Syria.

The global emphasis seemed to play into Biden's hands, with the Vice President and former longtime Senator repeatedly alluding to his vast experience in foreign affairs. Still, the 42-year-old Ryan, who has focused mostly on domestic issues during his 13 years in Congress, managed to hold his own.

Biden was on the attack last night, after President Obama's somewhat lackluster performance last week, mentioning Romney's now infamous "47%" remark. However, many have noted Biden's techniques of smirking, grinning and interrupting Ryan as an attempt to belittle the Republican nominee.

For those brief moments you don't see a #BidenSmirk on my face, know that I've got a #BidenSmirk in my heart. #VPDebate

— Biden Smirk (@BidenSmirk) October 12, 2012

Pundits are shocked at Joe Biden's laughing and eye rolling. What? They should be shocked at Paul Ryan's blatant distortion of facts.

— Not Bill Walton (@NotBillWalton) October 12, 2012

At one point, Biden quizzed Ryan on his and Romney's plans to cut tax bills of the wealthy, and after his response, quipped, "With all due respect, that's a bunch of malarkey."

Biden is hitting in one answer all the things Obama left out in the entire first 90 minute debate

— Bill Maher (@billmaher) October 12, 2012

CNN's senior political analyst David Gergen said: “Overall on substance, I think it was a draw. Each side will draw a lot of encouragement from it.”

“But I did want to make a point: On style, I think Paul Ryan won the debate. And that is, Biden, the dismissive laughs, the interruptions, the sort of shouting — I think that Ryan was calmer and frankly more presidential. On style, not substance, I think it was a Ryan victory. On substance, I thought it was a draw,” Gergen said in the Daily Caller, a Washington D.C. based news and opinion website.

What most seemed to agree upon was the praise for moderator ABC News' Martha Raddatz, who remained calm and articulate throughout:

Somehow at this debate, Paul Ryan came in third.

— Philip Bump (@pbump) October 12, 2012

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food / travel

When Racism Poisons Italy's Culinary Scene

This is the case of chef Mareme Cisse, a black woman, who was called a slur after a couple found out that she was the one who would be preparing their meal.

Photo of Mareme Cisse cooking

Mareme Cisse in the kitchen of Ginger People&Food

Caterina Suffici


TURIN — Guess who's not coming to dinner. It seems like a scene from the American Deep South during the decades of segregation. But this happened in Italy, in this summer of 2023.

Two Italians, in their sixties, got up from the restaurant table and left (without saying goodbye, as the owner points out), when they declared that they didn't want to eat in a restaurant where the chef was what they called: an 'n-word.'

Racists, poor things. And ignorant, in the sense of not knowing basic facts. They don't realize that we are all made of mixtures, come from different racial and ethnic backgrounds. And that food, of course, are blends of different ingredients and recipes.

The restaurant is called Ginger People&Food, and these visitors from out of town probably didn't understand that either.

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