Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan has tapped former U.S. solicitor general Ted Olson to play the role of Vice President Biden in preparations for next month’s debate.
Olson is best known as the top Republican attorney who, along with New York attorney David Boies, led the legal battle against California’s Proposition 8, banning same-sex marriage. His first mock debate session with Ryan, a congressman from Wisconsin, came this past week.
Ryan spokesman Brendan Buck called Olson “one of the most skilled, intelligent and successful litigators in America — just the kind of opponent needed to prepare the congressman for Mr. Biden.”
“Joe Biden has been in elected office for more than 40 years,” Buck said in a statement. “There are few people in politics with more experience debating the issues than Joe Biden, so we are taking this process seriously.”
Olson has won three-quarters of the 58 cases he has argued before the Supreme Court, including the Bush v. Gore case that cemented George W. Bush’s 2000 presidential victory. Olson represented Bush in the case, while Boies represented Gore. For their work on the lawsuit, Time Magazine in 2010 named both men among its 100 most influential thinkers.