Both sides claim victory after US vice-presidential debate

Republican and Democratic supporters both claim victory in the US vice-presidential debate.

VIRGINIA (Reuters) - In the immediate aftermath of the US vice-presidential debate campaign chiefs on both sides of the political fence were claiming victory.

"Mike Pence simply couldn't explain or defend what Donald Trump has said on the campaign trail and the hateful and divisive kind of campaign that he's run," said Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta.

"I think it was a very very rough night for Tim Kaine and the Hillary Clinton ticket and really great night for Mike Pence and our ticket," said Trump campaign manager KellyAnne Conway. 

Lawmakers were equally divided on the outcome of the one and only clash between Mr Pence and Mr Kaine.

"Pence would not defend Trump's statements and just acted like Trump didn't say those things," said Virginia Senator Mark Warner.

 Republican Congressman Mike Pompeo said: "Tim Kaine was obsessed by it tonight, he was literally obsessed with Donald Trump's taxes."

A CNN/ORC snap poll gave Pence 48 per cent support against his rival's 42 per cent.

The second debate between Mrs Clinton and Mr Trump is due to take place on Sunday in St Louis.