Well, if you read right wing punditry, that is what they would have you believe. Apparently, most of the reviews give the edge to Biden, with the exception of McCain surrogates and right-wing pundits like Michelle Malkin. And Fox news ... right, they are right-wing pundits .... I have to wonder what they put in the Kool-Aid that all these people are drinking. When you read lefty blogs all of them say Biden won, but all of them say Palin did this well, Biden looked bad here, etc ... but the right-wing blogs seem like they could have been written before the debate, based entirely on what these people wanted to see happen. What happened to intellectual honesty and the idea of constructive criticism?
So having watched the debate, I will put in my two cents. I thought Biden did a great job. He constantly hammered home the differences between the tickets, he was lucid, knowledgeable and also genial without being patronizing. He hit hard on the economy and harder on Iraq, and gave a lot of solid soundbites (it is sad that this is important, but these days it really is). Admittedly I did not watch the first 30 minutes, where apparently he was much worse, and based on the fact checking I have seen, he spouted a number of falsehoods, although Palin had more (it is disappointing to me that I am not more upset about this, but such is the state of politics that spouting fewer lies now passes for better. Its sad, lies should be bad no matter how many are told).
Palin was fine, if by fine you mean she was not self-immolating, she showed she could speak fluently and was very "folksy". If by fine you mean that she added something substantive to the discussion, demonstrated a more than cursory knowledge of anything or provided strong support for her ticket, then she was awful. And she spent the whole time rambling, looking at her notes or calling McCain a maverick ... in fact, I found this graphic that basically sums up her debate strategy (from Adennak)
Update - Well, it looks like I was wrong about Fox, at least partially. While the Fox news coverage did make it seem like Palin won the debate, their data say otherwise.