DANVILLE, KY (CBS NEWS) -- Vice President Joe Biden and Republican Vice Presidential Nominee Paul Ryan are squaring off in their first and only debate before Election Day. Their meeting comes just over a week after the first presidential debate, which gave a boost to the Romney-Ryan campaign.
Biden and Ryan greeted each other warmly but it didn't take long for the fireworks to begin.
Ryan: "When we look weak, our adversaries are much more willing to test us, they're much more brazen in their attacks."
Biden: "With all due respect that's a bunch of malarkey, because nothing he said is accurate."
Both candidates appeared engaged when speaking and when listening to their opponent, with Vice President Biden often smiling or laughing while Ryan was speaking. The two squabbled over entitlement programs.
Ryan:"Medicare and Social Security did so much for my own family, we are not going to jeopardize this program, but we have to save it."
Biden: "You are jeopardizing the program, you are changing the program from a guaranteed benefit to premium support, whatever you call. The bottom line is people are going to have to pay more out of their pocket."
The stakes were high for both candidates heading into the debate. After last week's match-up, Mitt Romney gained ground on President Obama in the polls.
The two sounded off on the biggest issue of the campaign, the economy.
Biden: "They're holding hostage the middle class tax cut to the super wealthy."
Ryan: "There aren't enough rich people and small businesses to tax to pay for all their spending."
Both candidates will take their messages on the road Friday. Ryan has campaign appearances in Ohio, Biden will speak in Ryan's home-state of Wisconsin.
KENTUCKY (WIFR) -- Incumbent Joe Biden and Janesville native Paul Ryan are getting ready for their first and only showdown.
Tonight, Biden will be trying to stop the republican ticket's momentum coming out of the first presidential debate. A new CBS news poll from three key battleground states suggests Romney is getting a boost from his performance. In Wisconsin, President Obama's 6 point lead has been cut in half, and Romney now leads in Colorado. We caught up with Congressman Don Manzullo, to get his take on how important tonight's face-off will be.
"The future of our country is at stake. You have to know what is going on. I don't know if it's going to move the polls as much as we saw in the presidential race but it doesn't take much to win an election when especially when things are this tight,” said Manzullo.
The VP debate begins at 8:00 p.m. tonight right here on 23 WIFR and will last for 90 minutes without commercial interruption.