2008 United States Vice-Presidential Debate

2008 United States Vice-Presidential Debate

Part of a series on 2008 United States Presidential Election. [View Related Entries]

Updated Nov 18, 2019 at 05:31AM EST by Y F.

Added Nov 16, 2009 at 06:10PM EST by Horseeater.

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2008 Vice Presidential Debate was a televised debate between the vice-presidential candidates Joe Biden and Sarah Palin in October of 2008. Watched by nearly 70 million U.S. television viewers and people online, the debate inspired a number of parodies online.


Vice-presidential candidates Joe Biden, a Senator from Delaware, and Sarah Palin, the Governor of Alaska, engaged in a televised debate on October 2nd, 2008. The debate was moderated by the Public Broadcasting Service journalist Gwen Ifill and took place at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. According to Neilsen Media Research[4], the debate was viewed by over 66 million viewers in the United States, making it the most viewed vice-presidential debate in United States history.

Notable Developments

Four-Pane Comics

On October 11th, the humor blog The Ginblog[9] published a post titled "15 Reasons Sarah Palin Will Never Win Any Argument," featuring a compilation of notable comics using screen captures from the debate. The images are rumored to have originated on the Internet news site Fark, but no archived threads have been found prior to October 11th. On October 13th, Fark[5] user Casanova.Frankensteir replied to a post about Tina Fey's portrayal of Sarah Palin on the sketch comedy television show Saturday Night Live with a four-pane comic mocking Palin's debate tactics (shown below, left). On October 17th, 2008, Fark[2] posted a template image with four screenshots from the Biden Palin debate (shown below, right), which encouraged site users to post their own versions of the comic. The post eventually accumulated over 270 replies, with many of the comics mocking Palin's intelligence and debate skills.

LIVE I'm considering making an appearance on SNL DEBATE NIGHT IN AMERICA CM LIVE You're gonna do great. You can read prepared speeches from cue cards better than anyone I knovw DEBATE NIGHT IN AMERICA LIVE Governor Palin? Rebuttal? LIVE shuffle shuffle shuffle LIVE LIVE LIVE LIVE

On October 18th, The Wolf Web[8] member wolfpackgrr submitted a thread titled "Those Biden Palin comics," which featured several notable examples from the Fark thread. On October 26th, the Internet humor site Ebaumsworld[6] posted a comic titled "Biden Palin Comic," in which Biden says "Governor Palin doesn't even have a plan for zupdog" to which Palin responds "What's zupdog?" (shown below).

LIVE Governor Palin doesn't even have a plan for zupdog. LIVE What's zupdog? LIVE LIVE

"Hey, Can I Call You Joe"

One of the most memorable moments from the debate came from Sarah Palin's casual greeting to Joe Biden, during which she was quoted as saying "Hey Joe, can I call you Joe?" Palin's informal yet equally charming opening was noted by many viewers at home on Twitter[10], commentators in the news media[11][12][13], as well as pundits[16] who went onto quote the line in parodies of the debate. Two days after the debate, a political satire website specializing in Sarah Palin videos was launched under the domain name CanICallYouJoe.com.[14]

Sarah Palin: Nice to meet you. Hey, can I call you Joe?
Joe Biden: You can call me Joe.
Palin: Thank you. Thank you Gwen, thank you.

Months after the election on January 7th, 2010, Politico[15] published an article titled "Palin aide warned of 'epic debacle'" which speculated that Palin's now famous words "Can I Call You Joe?" had been scripted beforehand by her campaign advisors after she repeatedly made the error of referring to him as "Senator O'Biden" during the preparation sessions.



LIVE You know Sarah if you're so concerned about who the real Barack Obama is, you should buy his book LIVE I did buy it Joe, and what I want to know is who wrote it for him. LIVE And what the rest of us want to know is Who read it to you? LIVE LIVE Good evening, Senator. Can I call you "Joe"? LIVE "No" LIVE LIVE Hey Sarah, have a knock-knock joke, but you have to start it LIVE Ok, Joe. "Knock Knock." LIVE "Who's there? LIVE LIVE I'm just a small- town girl, living in a lonely world. DEBATE NIGHT IN AMERICA LIVE LIVE I took the midnight train going anywhere LIVE Oh, I love Journey! LIVE With John McCain, I will help restore honor integrity and leadership to the White House LIVE LIVE ..by helping to shape sound economic policies ...as well as ensuring our foreign policy remains strong and secure. Or you could just get back in the kitchen LIVE LIVE dayyum girl you got some junk in that trunk! that ass be lookin' right tonight! LIVE that's inappropriate, senator biden! we're both married dontcha know? DEBATE NIGHT IN AMERICA CAA LIVE VICE PRESIDENTIA DEBATE CNN

Video Parodies

On October 3rd, 2008, the Schmoyoho YouTube channel uploaded a music video featuring auto-tuned footage from the debate (shown below, top left). On October 4th, the sketch comedy television show Saturday Night Live parodied the debate, in which Tina Fey famously impersonated Sarah Palin (shown below, top, right). The same day, YouTuber LisaNova uploaded a five-minute parody of the debate (shown below, bottom, left). On October 5th, YouTuber UniversityofTube uploaded a video titled "Sarah Palin – Bridge to no Underwear," featuring edited footage of the debate to sound as if the candidates were making sexually inappropriate comments (shown below, bottom, right).

Search Interest

External References

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