NEW YORK (
) -- Joe Biden and Paul Ryan instantly leaped into assaults on each others' platforms at Thursday night's vice presidential debate, but determining the victor may not have been as clear cut as the first presidential debate.
spoke to experts from various fields to gauge who they thought won the debate.
also looked at what pundits and journalists said in other media outlets. Here's what they all had to say in their own words.
Michael Goldman, Democratic operative in Massachusetts:
"You look at debates and you try to figure out what was the goal when they came in? The goal, I think, of Ryan was to not try and seem extreme. I think the goal of the vice president was to try and say [to Ryan] be specific. ... Biden dramatized over and over again the lack of specifics in a number of key areas -- particularly the tax plan. Once again [Ryan] obviously couldn't define it. ... I think the Democrats are going to be very happy tonight in the sense that they had somebody who went out there and was aggressive in terms of sending the president's agenda in a way that they didn't think the president did. ... I thought sometimes Ryan looked like a kid against him, but that's not his fault, because he is much younger. "
Patrick McSweeney, former Virginia Republican Party chairman:
"I thought it started off poorly for Biden with Libya, there's nothing he could do to salvage that. .... He did very well on Afghanistan I thought. ... I think his good points were undermined by his behavior. I don't think Joe can help himself. His tactic on taxes and the economy I thought might have worked with people who are inclined to believe the Obama-Biden way in the first place. I think he probably roused his base, but I was unsatisfied with both answers, answers from both on the economy and taxes. Ryan had an opening, but he didn't take advantage of it until his closing. ... Their discussion about military cuts left me terribly confused, and I think I know the facts but I think the two of them left me entirely befuddled. ... Ryan's best point he saved for the last. ... He finally talked about things that I think he was brought on the ticket to dramatize, which is bold alternatives to the Obama policies and directions."