Brooklyn Gets a Ringside Seat For Biden vs. Ryan

Voters pack local bar to watch Vice Presidential debate.

On Thursday night, the crowd at Pacific Standard partied like it was 2009—that is, if one's idea of a party is a night of partisan political point-taking.

Scores of young people, many of them still clinging to the idealism that imbued the campaign and first months of Barack Obama's historic presidency, packed the back room of the Park Slope watering hole to take in the joust between Joe Biden and Paul Ryan in last night's Vice Presidential debate.

"I'm just waiting for Biden to fight for our values, which we know are the best for our country," said Cobble Hill resident John Hedlund, 29.

And during the length of the 90-minute debate, Biden mostly delivered for a crowd composed mainly—if not completely—of Democrats and left-leaning independents.

Applause greeted many of Biden's frequent interjections against Ryan on Medicare, taxes and, most pointedly in a room filled with young women, reproductive rights.

"I don't believe that we have the right to tell women how to control their bodies," Biden told Ryan to cheers in Park Slope.

Reaction to Ryan's points on foreign policy and the national debt was more muted in a room where everyone seemingly had already made up their mind about both candidates.

"Ryan will stick with more traditional debating points and Biden will go for the empathy factor," said Park Slope resident Roger Newbell.

Later, while pundits from CNN, MSNBC and Fox News dissected "Laughin' Joe Biden" versus a more staid Ryan, Brooklyn residents Daniele Hauptman and Drew Moore engaged in their own post-debate wrap-up.

"I think Biden was great. He really put Ryan in his place," Hauptman said. "He just kept refuting every point—he wouldn't back down."

Moore agreed.

"[Biden] did a great job of making a point about the fundamental disagreement in how the different campaigns view the American people and society in general," Moore said. "And he did it without being personally distasteful."


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