Biden, Palin set to debate at Athletic Complex

Sen. Joe Biden from Delaware and Gov. Sarah Palin of Alaska, the vice presidential nominees of the Democratic and Republican parties, respectively, will debate each other at 8 p.m. Oct. 2 in the Athletic Complex, according to the Commission on Presidential Debates.

Biden was nominated for vice president Aug. 27 at the Democratic National Convention in Denver, Colo. A week later, on Sept. 4, Palin was nominated for vice president at the Republican National Convention in St. Paul, Minn.

Biden, 65, is a 36-year veteran of the U.S. Senate. He was elected in 1972 when he was 29. He is known for his leadership in foreign policy, terrorism, crime and drug policy. He ran unsuccessfully for the presidential nomination of his party in 1988 and in 2008.

Biden is the former chairman and longtime member of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Over the years, he has been influential in crime and drug policy legislation. His Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, frequently referred to as the Biden Crime Bill, increased police numbers by 100,000 nationwide and brought more federal support for criminal justice.

The 2007 Biden Crime Bill addresses burgeoning crime problems such as online child exploitation, computer hacking and teenage prescription drug abuse.

Palin’s vice presidential nomination marks the first time that the Republican Party has nominated a woman for the position. On Dec. 4, 2006, she also made history when she became the first female governor of Alaska.

Palin, 46, has overseen increases in Alaska state savings, education funding and implemented the Senior Benefits Program that provides support for low-income older Alaskans. Her administration has passed an overhaul of the states ethics laws and developed a process to construct a gas pipeline.

Palin is chair of the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission, a multistate government agency that promotes the conservation and efficient recovery of domestic oil and natural gas resources while protecting the environment.

Before becoming governor of Alaska, she served two terms on the Wasilla City Council and two terms as mayor/manager of Wasilla.

Palin also has served as chair of the Alaska Conservation Commission, which regulates Alaska’s oil and gas.