11/02/2008 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

My Prediction: Palin Stops the Bleeding Tonight

Cross-posted on OpenLeft

Joe Biden is a good debater, and there's always the chance that Palin will say something incredibly stupid, but my strong bet tonight is that she does well and stops or at least slows down her meltdown in the polls.

I actually think this debate is set up extremely well for her:

  • Incredibly low expectations

  • Short answers on broad predictable topics

  • Lots of prep time with smart GOP operatives giving her zingy one-liners that will play well on news clips in the days following the debates

  • Biden feeling a need to walk on tiptoes because he doesn't want to seem condescending

  • Pre-written Republican talking points attacking Biden's condescension and Palin's strong, expectation-beating performance

Even if all of this comes to pass, it won't change the basic dynamics of the race. I do think, though, that it will stop the bleeding and stabilize her approval rating... at least until her next incredibly stupid answer to someone's question.