In an attempt to recreate the fun-filled, adrenaline-packed atmosphere of having a debate-viewing party in your very own home, we have decided to do our debate coverage in the form of a gchat between Senior Editor Rachel and Contributing Editor Carmen, with occasional appearances from Community Managerette Lemon. They are qualified for this job via their strong feelings about the candidates and marginally competent knowledge of the issues at hand. Also, once Rachel won a Long Island iced tea at a bar for her performance at Sarah Palin Bingo during the last election, so. This will be more fun to read if you’ve watched the debate, but if you haven’t, we’ve embedded it for you!
Rachel: Carmen are you watching
it’s already hilarious
Rachel: Wait all I can see are people shifting in their seat
Carmen: That’s what’s happening
Rachel: Oh good
Carmen: A white lady is talking
Rachel: I can’t hear her
Carmen: Before she said ‘chamillionaire is apparently hip-hop’ and I spit my drink out
Also my mom is in the room?
Rachel: Oh hi Mrs. Rios
Cool that a woman is moderating I guess?
Wish that it was Rachel Maddow though
Or someone not white and blond, even
I wish they televised the coin toss like in football games
Actually wait i have no idea if that actually happens
Carmen: Shouldn’t people who work in politics have like poker faces
THEY’RE SO BAD AT THIS ALREADY TBH
Rachel: I always totally forget what Biden looks like
Carmen: lol her name is Martha
He got a lil stocky and his voice sounds weird
Rachel: It’s a surprise every time, like the little plastic castle
Rachel: Wow, going straight for terrorists!
Carmen: yeah wow
Rachel: Not pulling any punches huh Martha
She’s really showing up Lehrer
Carmen: ‘Restoring America’s heart’ that was sweet
Rachel: We have to drink every time he mentions Bin Laden, you know that right
Carmen: ‘Track you to the gates of hell’ DAMN, and Ryan smiling like ‘I’ve been there!’
Rachel: I feel like this is already way more factual than the presidential debate was. Biden is going hard in the paint.
Carmen: Ryan thinks we need more guns!
Rachel: I think you’re ahead of me, Ryan hasn’t started talking yet in my world
Rachel: YOU’RE IN THE FUTURE CARMEN
Carmen: Haha omg he is going HARD rn against Biden/Obama and trying to play up Romney being better with Libya, which is funny since Romney literally fucked up everything abroad possible
Rachel: I feel like Ryan’s speech mannerisms are really overly careful, like he is talking to a stupid person or reading poetry
Carmen: YES I feel that
Rachel: Poetry about fascism, obviously
Carmen: It’s never too early / to speak up for / our values
We should not have called him a reformer / when he was turning guns / on his own people
Rachel: *Finger snaps*
Carmen: My mom is now yelling from the other room
Rachel: What is she saying?
Rachel:Biden is straight up giggling at what Ryan is saying. Love it. WHOA Biden! “With all due respect that is a bunch of malarkey”
Carmen: How 1940’s polite gentleman of him
Rachel: I’m feeling good about this, this is some strong rhetoric
Carmen: “I don’t know what my friend is talking about!”
Rachel: Biden has clearly been drinking his Gatorade, is bringing is A game
Carmen: Yo Joe Biden is gonna dominate. Like I feel like the people in the front rows paid to see this because Joe Biden is a sight to be seen
Rachel: Do you think the average debate watcher really even knows that there was a crisis w/r/t Libya? I’m not asking that in a catty way, but just because I always wonder what these debates mean to people
Carmen: no, I don’t
I don’t think ANYONE knew wtf was going on in the first debate
way too wonky
also Ryan is trying to call Obama/Biden out on flip flopping
Rachel: Also, this is maybe a dumb questions, but who actually decides the debate questions? The moderator?
Carmen: Romney should avoid that at all costs
the ‘comission’ I assume
Rachel: omg I know
Carmen: “I’d actually like to move to Iran”
the moderator said that
Rachel: “What we should not be apologizing for is standing up for our values.” What exactly are our “values” w/r/t burning Qur’ans? Like please, elaborate.
Rachel: Ryan is good at looking at the camera strategically, I’ll give him that
Carmen: I feel like ryan is literally telling stories
yeah Biden needs some media training tbh
I think it’s ’cause they’re sitting down
threw them off
Rachel: “Can the two of you be absolutely clear and specific,” seems like she learned a lot from the first debate
Also wow, going straight to military strikes! this is just not a drill
Carmen: Ugh, I hate talking about the military this way
stop talking about the ~details
TALK ABOUT GETTING US THE FUCK OUT OF THERE.
Rachel: I don’t think I can really take discussions on military decisions in good faith. like maybe it was being raised by a Quaker pinko commie single mom (love you mom!)
Carmen: Also I feel like ryan talking about nuclear weapons is cheap
Rachel: But yeah I’m just not interested in hearing about anything other than de-escalating any military action
Carmen: Wow. “Let’s look at this from the eye of an Ayatollah.”
Paul Ryan, are you TRASHED
Rachel: I do not think Paul Ryan is qualified to do that. Wow this is so real! I’m genuinely pretty uninformed on these foreign policy issues tbh
Carmen: Yeah who is bb #embarrassed
Rachel: Mostly this is just making me really anxious
Carmen: wait Joe Biden just laughed and looked up to the gods
that’s how right he knows he is
side note: he makes Paul Ryan look like a teenage boy
Rachel: Paul Ryan’s face creeps me out so much. I know that’s not incisive political commentary, but I can’t not say it. There’s this Buffy episode where there’s an evil frat where college boys try to sacrifice girls to a malicious reptile god, I feel like Paul Ryan would belong to it
Carmen: The ayatollahs want a nuclear weapon, just like when kids pass a yo-yo in the store. That’s what I just got out of this
omg Paul Ryan just recycled a scripted line about Russia.
Rachel: I think what Biden is ultimately trying to do here is make the point that we don’t have to operate out of fear on these decisions
which is a point I admire
Carmen: Yes, I think that makes sense. And saying that the president knows what the fuck is going on because HELLO, he is actually president unlike anyone else and talks to people and works on it
“this president does not bluff” – winning line
Rachel: Good, yes
god, Martha is just not fucking around
did she really just ask “which is worse, war in the middle east or a nuclear weapon?”
Rachel: YEAH BIDEN
“war should always be the absolute last resort”
and omg okay yes bringing up the improvements is a GREAT FUCKING STRATEGY YES
Rachel: Wow. “Can you get unemployment to under 6% and how long will it take?”
Carmen: I think Biden’s monologue is literally like the most moving thing I’ve ever witnessed
Rachel: I agree. Although I also almost cried in the doctor’s waiting room today at an ABC family show about a dad dying, so it might just be me tbh. YES thank you for bringing up the 47%
Carmen: omg Ryan said the economy is ‘limping along’ HAHA YR DUDE MADE IT CRIPPLED SO
Rachel: what’s the Kahlil Gibran quote? Even those who limp go not backwards?
Carmen: I hate when they blame democrats for not cleaning up the dog shit their animals leave in the bathroom y’know
is that too strong
Rachel: The Chris Rock line is really good, “this guy couldn’t cure cancer, so you’re going to vote for cancer?”
I feel like it’s important to note that regardless of what Republicans think they’re going to do to create jobs, they’re 100% going to slash support for the people who still don’t have jobs. Like it’s not that comforting to know you might someday get a job sort of if you can’t get unemployment or welfare.
Carmen: Yeah I feel that for sure.
Rachel: “Romney’s a good man”
GOOD JOB PAUL RYAN, YOU WIN
Carmen: Oh wow Biden just brought up that time his wife died
Rachel: “Sometimes the words don’t come out of your mouth the right way!”
tiny violin for Romney/Ryan
Rachel: This is like the Akin situation
Carmen: “Sometimes we don’t have enough time to properly script lies for you. Vote Romney/Ryan.”
Rachel: You can’t “misspeak” that hard
also I didn’t know that about Biden’s wife and daughter
Carmen: OH MY GOD OH MY GOD BIDEN ALREADY WON THE DEBATE HOLY SHIT “YOU JUST ACT LIKE THE GREAT RECESSION FELL OUT OF THE SKY IT’S YOUR FAULT”
Rachel: I think it’s a good move to say that he doesn’t doubt Romney’s commitment to individuals but that he still doesn’t like his record, also
moving the discussion to where it actually belongs
Carmen: Yes, away from personal and back to actual information
I think it’s weird that Romney/Ryan talk about what they’ll do without revealing how, still
Rachel: I want to show this to my students to talk about actual argumentation as opposed to logical fallacies
Carmen: Even after being called out, like multiple times
WHERE IS THE PLAN.
Rachel: It’s crazy how they can get away with it, though
like I think on some level I thought there were rules about this
like “you can’t just make shit up” or “you have to have a plan”
Carmen: Absolutely not
that’s right-wing politics. For sure. At least as of late.
Rachel: Oh my god Ryan just avoided answering that question so hard
Carmen: “We would’ve done it better! But we don’t know how. We just know.”
Rachel: “When can you get it below 6%?” “Well, that’s what our plan will do!”
Carmen: Biden literally keeps laughing
it’s the best,
and now he’s just like on some freeway shit
Carmen: Did Paul Ryan just admit he lives with his mom? Also I feel like saying “we’ve all had tragedies in our lives” after Biden’s story is mad awkward / disrespectful, y’know. Like damn.
Rachel: “Medicare and entitlements”
take away the “s” and it’s Paul Ryan’s life story
Carmen: Your grandma living with you? Not like your wife dying.
Rachel: Omg if I have to watch Ryan talk like he’s going to defend Medicare I will literally throw up. It will be on some Linda Blair projectile shit.
Carmen: YES ME TOO YES. I hate when they blatantly lie. “We love Medicare! We love Social Security! We love poor people!”
#lie #morelying #somanylies
Rachel: Omg he’s perpetuating the exact same lie he’s already been called on as far as Obama taking money from Medicare?
this is so ballsy and awful
Carmen: Yeah but Biden is just like ‘oh hell no.’
Rachel: Oh my God, Ryan, YOU INVENTED THE VOUCHER THING. I will never get over how blatantly they pin the things they themselves have done on Obama. Biden getting really real with the camera eye contact, very nice
Carmen: Always and forever. So at this point Obama is so over it that he is just like ‘no stop talking you lying thirteen-year-old boy’
Oh shit she asked for a plan!! Rachel do you think they have one? Bets on no. I’ll drink this pitcher if I’m wrong.
Rachel: You have a pitcher??
Carmen: Of mudslide!
Rachel: Very nice. Biden is so sassy!!
Carmen: This moderator is really good. and YES. I think he pregamed.
Next: Lemon joins us, taxes, war, and abortion!
Rachel: Oh shit, is she proposing her own ideas and having them respond? That’s badass.
Rachel: Props to Biden for actually explaining the voucher system and shutting it down. Vouchers are wacko if you’re a teen. Or anyone.
Also vouchers are whack
Biden “doesn’t have a track record to run on?” Fuck you. “We are not jeopardizing this program.” Fuck you.
Carmen: THIS IS ALL WRONG
Rachel: This is filling me with so much rage. But I feel so indebted to Biden for calling him on it
Carmen: Yes. Omg the taxes shit is so real
Rachel: I feel like we’re getting way straighter answers in this debate. I mean obviously Ryan is lying, but at least questions are actually being answered.
Rachel: Biden is all fire and brimstone
Get it, girl
Lolol Ryan referencing Canada is so funny. They like gay people and have socialized healthcare there, dood. Watch yourself.
Rachel: This set of statistics he’s creating w/r/t taxes and small businesses is so weird
Carmen: Romney did it too. Weird shit.
Lemon: There aren’t enough rich people and small businesses to tax??
Rachel: This does not make sense
Lemon: Also LOL you guys Biden’s laugh
Carmen: “So do you have a plan? What is your plan?”
Lemon: It’s like he knows a secret that everyone else doesn’t
Rachel: It’s such a genuine laugh, that’s what makes it great
Carmen: He’s giggling like a schoolgirl because of how well this is going for him
SIX STUDIES SIX STUDIES SIX STUDIES
Rachel: I feel like Ryan is holding his shit together well enough that republicans will still try to claim he won this debate. But they will be wrong
Lemon: “Can I translate”
Rachel: My best friend and I are in a separate GChat talking about how Ryan is totally that guy who makes snide “jokes” about your body in an attempt to get you to lose weight. Just FYI
Carmen: OH SHIT
PAUL RYAN JUST TRIED TO SAY “YOU GUYS DON’T LIKE BIPARTISANASHIP”
Ok hold on
PAUL RYAN IS TRYING TO SAY DEMS DON’T LIKE BIPARTISANSHIP
AND I CAN’T EVEN
Rachel: Yeah because you know who loves working together as a team and definitely doesn’t block and/or filibuster everything the other party tries to do
Carmen: YOU FUCKERS WERE BEING BIG BABIES THE WHOLE TIME WE TRIED TO BE BIPARTISAN
Rachel: Remember that time the GOP blocked literally everything
Like every single thing
They blocked THE VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN ACT
The single, only reason that exists is to STOP VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN
And they still had to block it
Lemon: THEY DO NOT NEED IT, MARTHA (re: tax breaks for the wealthy)
Lemon: That is the whole point right there
Rachel: God the loopholes again
Lemon: That is all. Nothing else.
Rachel: Do Republicans even know what loopholes are? Like, what that word means? I feel like they think they might be imaginary woodland creatures, like snipes.
Carmen: Yes, it’s how they get elected
Rachel: “We’re going to fix taxes by finding the loopholes! They’re out there. Somewhere.”
Carmen: Also what you said about Ryan making fat jokes is so true
Rachel: “No one wants that.” — Martha
Rachel: The whole philosophy of the GOP is so wrapped up in ideology of strength and weakness, which makes me so sad
Rachel: Not to get all touchy-feely on you but I feel so sad about the ways in which we’ve conflated self-sufficiency and militaristic might with strength
And peace and helping each other out as “weakness”
Carmen: I hate that failing due to circumstances outside of your control —
Failing because of institutional barriers
Failing because of poverty
Failing because of anything that is out of your hands
And when I say failing I mean like, failing to be a billionaire? To eat? To make it?
Is your fault
Rachel: Is “weak”
Carmen: And it makes you like, a bad person
Like why does that make me a bad person
I’m unemployed it’s cause YOU GUYS who are bad people, and you don’t give a fuck about me
Timely: “They Don’t Really Care About Us” by Michael Jackson.
Rachel: “The gains we’ve gotten?” What have we gained from all these wars, exactly?Haha I just noticed Martha’s water glass has a cocktail straw in it. Am secretly hoping that’s because it’s a cocktail
Carmen: I like joe biden just like lingering
Rachel: I love that Martha is making it explicit that Ryan won’t give a timeline
He’s kind of floundering now
Carmen: He is failing
And not in the weak way…
In the dumb way.
Rachel: He just doesn’t have an answer
Carmen: I think it’s unfair to say the Taliban are going to “take advantage” of our timeline
We need a timeline and we need to leave.
We went to kill Osama / Saddam, it’s all over, let’s give it up
We got the blood, we made some positive change, let’s empower some people to do their shit
Rachel: Also trying to deflect responsibility by waving a vague scary thing is just so done
Carmen: Yes, it’s sooo done. I’m so over that
The Taliban existed before, they exist now, they exist.
Gangs exist! THE KKK EXISTS!
Murder is wrong!
Rachel: “Let me try to illustrate this, because I think it can be a little confusing” I appreciate your treating us like children, Ryan, I feel so much more reassured now
Carmen: Except when he does it it’s like he’s telling me a story. A fake story. I like that he is dropping names of regions to make up for when Romney fucked them up
Rachel: “Let’s move to another war.”
Carmen: I love this question
“WHY NOT START MORE WARS”
Rachel: I just laughed out loud
Carmen: But how could that even be possible
Painting a picture about “fighters spilling in”
I also kind of think they want to fight so we lose, and so we leave. So we should just leave?
Rachel: “What would my friend do DIFFERENTLY? You notice he never answers the question.”
House of Biden, bringing realness
Carmen: HOLY SHIT ABORTION
Rachel: Oh good, Catholicism
Can’t wait to talk about this
Also why does religion have any place in this debate?
Carmen: “I don’t think a peron can separate their personal life or their faith from their politics.” – Paul Ryan said this, Biden won the debate. The end.
D00d this is some basic shit
Rachel: YOU SHOULD NOT HOLD PUBLIC OFFICE
SIGNED, SEALED, DELIVERED
Asshole, I don’t care about your kid
Your kid is not going to be vice president
Rachel: Your feelings about her are not valid here
Carmen: Fuck ya kid
Dude Biden’s kid DIED
So fuck him
I’m just gonna keep bringing that up
Rachel: “Assaulting the religious liberties of this country”
I cannot roll my eyes hard enough
Taxpayer money going to Planned Parenthood isn’t the same thing as it going to abortion, asshole.
God, it is so good to hear a politician say “I refuse to impose this on others”
“Let me make it absolutely clear” is OG Obama
Oh FUCK YES bringing up the “forcible rape” issue
Shine a LIGHT on that bullshit
Oh that question was so good — Is abortion gonna remain legal? I would very much like to know
Carmen: I LOVED THAT Q
Rachel: God, Biden killed that question. He is so right about Supreme Court justices.
I was thinking how weird it is to say like
“I like life, except in three instances”
Like I feel like that’s almost weirder than just supporting abortion
To say “no, except the following lives are not worthy of being fought for”
Rachel: That’s so true
Also, wow, really bringing it full circle. “Are you ever embarrassed by the tone of this campaign?”
Carmen: I love it
She done good
She done good.
Rachel: I wanna buy her a drink
Carmen: I have a lil mudslide left, I’ll pour it out
Wow, Ryan calling Obama negative is HILARIOUS
“The string of broken promises”
“STRING OF LIES”
Rachel: There is just virtually no relationship between reality and Ryan’s statements in this debate
Carmen: HIS RESPONSE IS TEARING PEOPLE DOWN
Rachel: The collective response to this question is making me sad
It seems like the idea is “well, i’ve been negative because my opponent is just so awful I can’t help it! LET ME PROVIDE EXAMPLES.”
Wow, really? Trying to front like Obama is the one who won’t give a specific plan?
That’s pretty ballsy
Carmen: This is bad because Joe Biden’s speech was moving (“it will be okay. It will be okay.”) But Paul Ryan is looking at the camera
And I know that’s a good thing to do because college
Rachel: Because college
Are they going to hug like Obama and Romney hugged?
Because that was so gloriously uncomfortable
Carmen: That was homosexy
Paul Ryan just sounded way too scripted / robotic so
Rachel: I feel like he’s trying to sell me a used car. Aw, handshake, no hug. Kind of a serious arm squeeze though
Carmen: Oooh ~sensual
It is a used car. It’s a recycled car that doesn’t run but it looks nice for 5 seconds
Rachel: Ok, I feel like it needs to be acknowledged that aside from the 5 minutes spent on abortion, the glaring question of women’s issues didn’t get any screen time
NO GAY Q
What even are gay people
Also tho we can totes acknowledge that biden won
Carmen: Biden pwned a bitch
It is official, Biden hath owned
Rachel: I’m going to send him an edible arrangement
Sign my name in the card
And that’s all she wrote, folks! Join us again for the next Presidential debate on October 16. In the meantime, check out the fact-checking on this debate as well as the White House’s clarifications, and of course, Ann Friedman’s GIF coverage. (Also, if you haven’t seen this yet, go ahead and check it out. It will help.)