For many Americans watching the Vice Presidential debate last night between Senator Kamala Harris and Vice President Mike Pence, it quickly turned into a watered down version of the previous first debate.
Social media users noticed the excessive over-talking by the Vice President and refusal to directly answer any questions as the Senator attempted to complete responses.
Moderator Susan Page of USA today appeared to be struggling worse than moderator Chris Wallace in keeping accurate time for both participants.
Throughout the 90 minute broadcast, Senator Harris frequently said "Excuse me, Mr. Vice President, I'm speaking" and forced herself to control her verbal responses by facial expressions of disbelief.
Although several viewers found her expressions relatable and commendable, former journalist and talk show host Megyn Kelly took to her Twitter to comment "Take it like a woman. Don't make faces."
Megyn explained her post with saying "as opposed to 'like a man'. We can be stoic too." Some of her readers commented that they felt it made the Senator seem unsuited for office to show emotion but others were quick to check the journalist.
However in Harris' defense, one user responded, "Did you mean like a Handmaid?"
Another responded, "Maybe she's a woman who has decided not to "take it" or "take it" differently than you might.
Political consultant and strategist Bill Burton replied, "Expressing disgust at lies, deception and constantly being talked over -- is worth reaction."
Megyn Kelly wasn't being discredited when her expressions were exaggerated. As someone who considers herself a champion of truth and challenger of the status quo, it is interesting that she expects a woman who also has stellar credentials to sit in silence and expressionless as a man infringes on her allotted time to speak.
According to CBS debate coverage, VP Pence interrupted Senator Harris at least ten times. Susan, during moderation, would also attempt to limit Harris' chance to speak in efforts to reclaim her time when her opponent infringed.
Suburban women are the group to sway for both candidates according to several polls. Undecided women could likely have negative to response to the way VP Pence attempted to dominate the conversation the way that Pres. Trump did during his own debate.
Stoicism does not, in itself, demonstrate power or strength. The image of not caring or being affected versus being somewhat demonstrative in showing that certain behavior is unacceptable is not something Americans are looking for when they are seeking answers to questions that affect their lives.
The purpose of a national debate is for the viewers who would like definitive, or at least argumentative, reasoning in which candidate serves their best interests as a candidate.
For Senator Harris to have shown no emotion when faced with a rival who currently holds a higher title, and in this country, what is often viewed as higher status due to his sex and skin color, would be to relinquish any confidence in her abilities as a female leader with an appearance of being weak.
The worse alternative would have been to get in an ongoing shouting match, only to then be painted as an "angry black woman" or "unprofessional".
Though most Americans may not have learned everything they were hoping to learn last night during the VP debate on the issues, they did learn that Senator Harris as the newest candidate to the office can stand there and can take it... but she can also choose not to.