VAN SUSTEREN: Oh, no, he -- people who know him like him. He's a nice guy.
PRIEBUS: But it was a sad night for him, I think, as a person.
VAN SUSTEREN: I think, as a practical matter, it made -- it -- first of all, it changed the narrative. I assume that the Obama campaign wanted the narrative to be substantive about what happened and what the vice president said. Instead, all we do is talk about his smirking. That's all anybody's talking about today. So anything achieved there -- for the most part, vice presidential debates are in some ways a little bit political theater.
VAN SUSTEREN: And we just have to see if the new -- the one who's on a ticket who we haven't seen before, whether he's up for the job. And whether you agree with vice -- with Congressman Ryan or not, he's up for the job. I think everyone agrees. They may not agree with him politically, but he's competent.
But otherwise, it's just -- it was just -- this has been such a distraction.
PRIEBUS: But the momentum is what matters. And so even though I was impressed with Paul, I was proud of the way he sat there and did such a credible and intelligent job -- when we walked into the auditorium, we had the momentum in this race. And when we got in the car and drove back to the hotel, we still had the momentum in this race. And tonight, we have the momentum in the race. So they didn't win anything!
VAN SUSTEREN: Did -- did you talk to Congressman Ryan last night?
PRIEBUS: I did, and...
VAN SUSTEREN: And what sort of -- off -- off-substance did he have to say about, besides the issues? I mean...
PRIEBUS: I think he was feeling pretty good. I mean, I think that he was -- he understood, I think, what Joe Biden was trying to pull off there. And I don't think it worked. I mean, his debate coach, whoever was coaching him -- I don't know if it was Van Hollen or Ed Schultz, but whoever was coaching him gave him some bad advice because it fell flat. And I think Paul did what he had to do, which is to be decent and to be smart and be persistent.
VAN SUSTEREN: Let me ask now about the substance. The Obama campaign has sent out -- you know, both -- everyone sends out statements to us all the time. What it says in part tonight -- it says, "Romney and Ryan want to cut taxes by $250,000 for multi-millionaires and pay for it by raising taxes on the middle class." Basically saying...
PRIEBUS: Yes, they just keep on coming with this lie. They just keep on coming. And you know what? Barack Obama tried that a week and-a-half ago in Denver. And it fell flat because...
VAN SUSTEREN: Well, they call you guys the liars.
PRIEBUS: Well, listen, I mean, they haven't been able to produce anything. I mean, these guys are incredible. They talked about -- you know, the first thing -- Well, where are the specifics? I mean, what are you talking about? We're going to get lectured by a bunch of Democrats and the president and Joe Biden when they haven't passed a budget in three-and- a-half years, contrary to the law!
And we have the five-point plan that we go over and over and over, the 59-point plan, the Wyden-Ryan plan, the Ryan budget. I mean, we've got plans coming out of our ears, and these guys haven't done their job in four years! They've put this country in the ditch! They can't talk about any of their own record! They have nothing to talk about! That's why they fall flat.
They're going into a closing argument without a single good fact on their side. And there isn't -- you can get the best lawyer in America to defend you, but if you've lousy facts, you're losing the case. That's what their problem is. They're losing the case because they have no case!
VAN SUSTEREN: All right, strategy, Tuesday night. I imagine that President Obama is going to come prepared. And he's going to be gunning for your candidate.
PRIEBUS: But he's got to have a case, right? He can come prepared, but eventually, he's got to be able to tell the American people what he did right, why we're going broke, why people are out of work, why he couldn't get it done when he had a majority in the House and the Senate. That's his problem! Because he has to answer to the American people, and he can't!
VAN SUSTEREN: Well, it's going to interesting because it's going to be town hall.
PRIEBUS: Yes. You know, that'll be interesting, but in the end, he's going to have to account for his record, and that's his problem. He cannot make a good case to the American people for the misery that we have endured for four years on his watch.
You know, I think he forgets that he's been president for four years. And I'm sure that Governor Romney's going to remind him. And he knows it, too.
VAN SUSTEREN: Reince, thank you. Nice to see you.
PRIEBUS: All right.