California partisans gave Thursday night's debate win to their candidate after an aggressive Joe Biden tried to make up political ground by sparring with Republican candidate Paul Ryan in the vice presidential debate in Kentucky.
Still, the level of happiness with Ryan's performance among Republicans failed to match that of Democrats with their candidate's, according to Patch's flash poll of influential California party members.
Vice President Biden took the offense against the GOP congressman, who responded in calm, wonky terms, giving voters a rare chance to see the two together on a national stage.
While 85 percent of the 13 Democrats taking the Patch survey said Biden won the debate by a wide margin, only 44 percent of the 18 California Republicans who returned the poll said the same.
Asked who the national media would judge as the winner, Democrats responded that 62 percent would give the win to Biden while only 5 percent of Republicans thought the same of their candidate.
GOP insiders were also asked if they agreed with the statement that Ryan's debate performance will increase the number of California votes for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. Seventeen percent strongly agreed.
When the question was put to Democrats whether Biden's performance will increase California votes for Obama, 62 percent of the Democrats strongly agreed.
Republicans were critical of Biden's demeanor, with one chiding the vice president for his "disrespectful interruptions and derisive laughter" and another noting his "smirks and disrespectful chuckles."
For their part, California Democrats were clearly happy with the debate at Centre College in Danville, KY, but they were pointed in their comments contrasting Biden with that of the president's lackluster performance in the first presidential debate on Oct. 3.
"Biden was a breath of fresh air - Obama should take note," said one Democrat. Another noted: "Obama needed this one and now it is in his camp."
Obama next meets Romney on Tuesday at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y. CNN political correspondent Cindy Crowley will moderate the town hall meeting.
Our surveys are not a scientific random sample of any larger population, but rather an effort to listen to a swath of influential local Republican and Democratic activists, party leaders and elected officials in California. All of these individuals have agreed to participate in surveys, although not all responded to this week's questions.
Patch will be conducting Red California and Blue California surveys throughout 2012 in hopes of determining the true sentiment of Republicans and Democrats on the ground in California. If you are an activist, party leader or elected official and would like to take part in a weekly surveys that lasts just a few minutes, please email Sandra Oshiro.