FAIRFIELD — Local voters were divided on who did better Thursday in a heated debate between Vice President Joe Biden and Republican vice presidential nominee Rep. Paul Ryan.
Steve Laird, Rod Ferroagiaro and Ed Hall, all volunteers with the Solano County Republican Party, said that Biden came off as uncouth and unprofessional, in stark contrast to his opponent.
Ferroagiaro said Biden’s laughing and interruptions made him look like a nasty school child, not the current vice president. Hall said Biden’s conduct was embarrassing.
“Joe Biden was out of order,” Hall said.
Quinton Crawford, a volunteer with the Solano Democratic Committee, felt differently about Biden’s performance. He said Biden exceeded his expectations and offered straightforward answers with facts to back them up, whereas Ryan, he said, ran around his answers.
The candidates addressed both foreign and domestic policy, including hot-button issues such as Medicare, Libya, Afghanistan and abortion.
Joanna Mathis, volunteer with the Solano Democratic Committee, said the war in Afghanistan is a personal and critical issue. Mathis, who said she has family and friends deployed there, said she was assured to hear Biden confirm the administration’s plans to pull troops out.
“I’m 100 percent against more wars,” she said.
Abortion remained a difficult issue to discuss, but Mathis appreciated Biden’s straightforward answer on his pro-choice policy, which he said is a decision between a woman and her doctor.
Ryan confirmed his opposition to abortion with exceptions in cases of rape, incest or when the life of the mother is at stake.
Marcela M’Quiddy watched the debate at the Solano Republican headquarters, and although she said she wasn’t entirely satisfied with Ryan’s answers about abortion, she said the issue is being blown up by Democrats to scare female voters. Reversing Roe v. Wade, she said, would never fly.
As the election approaches and voters get to know the candidates better, people like M’Quiddy and Mathis said they are more confident than ever about which administration they want for the next four years.
“Ryan is wrong to put the blame on somebody else,” Mathis said. “We can’t put the blame on Obama. The (recession) has been going on before he became president.”
M’Quiddy said, however, that Obama had his chance. She said she hopes a different administration will send the country in the right direction.
“It’s not about right and left. It’s about right and wrong,” she said.
Reach Heather Ah San at 427-6977 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/HeatherMalia.