Conservative legal scholar Ted Olson has been tapped to play the role of Vice President Joe Biden in Paul Ryan's debate prep sessions, Mitt Romney's campaign said Saturday.
The two men participated in their first mock debate session last week.
Olson is one of the fiercest legal minds of his generation and successfully argued for George W. Bush in the landmark 2000 Supreme Court case Bush v. Gore.
He has become a staunch advocate for same-sex marriage in recent years and has argued in federal court against California's Prop. 8, which banned gay marriage. That earned him the enmity of some conservatives who saw him as a sellout.
Olson served as solicitor general under President George W. Bush and has argued 58 cases before the Supreme Court, winning three quarters of those cases.
"Joe Biden has been in elected office for more than 40 years," said Brendan Buck, a spokesman for Ryan. "There are few people in politics with more experience debating the issues than Joe Biden, so we are taking this process seriously. Mr. Olson is one of the most skilled, intelligent and successful litigators in America -- just the kind of opponent needed to prepare the congressman for Mr. Biden."
Ryan and Biden will square off in the vice presidential debate on Oct. 11 in Kentucky.