Biden looks forward to Palin debate

9/7/2008 WASHINGTON "She's a smart, tough politician, so I think she's going to be very formidable," Biden told NBC's "Meet the Press" on Sunday.

The Democratic senator from Delaware and the Republican governor of Alaska are scheduled to debate Oct. 2 at Washington University in St. Louis.

Biden, serving his sixth term in Congress, said "there's a lot of very tough, smart women in the United States Senate I debate every day." So going up against the first-term governor, he said: "It's not new." He also mentioned his wife, Jill, who has a Ph.D.

Asked whether he'd debate Palin differently than he would Republicans Mitt Romney or Tom Ridge, two former governors who figured into speculation about John McCain's running mate, Biden said the only difference is that he knows their positions on issues.

"I have no idea what her policies are. I assume they're the same as John's. I just don't know," he said of Palin.

Biden said she delivered a great speech to the Republican National Convention last week in St. Paul, Minn., but "her silence on the issues was deafening.

"She didn't mention a word about health care, a word about the environment, a word about the middle class. They never parted her lips ... so I don't know where she is on those things."

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