October 11th, 2012
01:14 PM ET
Danville, Kentucky (CNN) – Senior Democrats are predicting a scrappy competitive debate between Vice President Joe Biden and Rep. Paul Ryan when they meet onstage in Kentucky Thursday. But both men are collegial people so don't expect a fight club atmosphere.
With polls tightening and new pressure to energize Democrats after last week's presidential debate, Biden has been off the campaign trail for six days hunkered down in debate prep since the weekend.
He's been working out of the same hotel in Wilmington, Delaware that housed his 2008 prep. Each day since Sunday he held a full 90 minute mock debate plus additional work sessions, all run by debate expert and former Biden chief of staff Ron Klain. The vice president's current chief of staff, Bruce Reed, was also present.
Maryland Rep. Chris Van Hollen played the role of Paul Ryan; he knows Ryan from their work together on the House Budget Committee. Biden communications director Shaliagh Murray played the role of moderator Martha Raddatz, according to senior Democratic officials.
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