Thursday, November 15, 2007

Live Debate Thread

CNN is so weird. Every time they get creative with the debate format it just makes it more of a circus.

...Hillary 1, Obama 0.

...Obama: "Illegal immigrants are not here to drive, they're not here to go to the In N' Out Burger." Doh* but now he's backing away from saying yes or no on drivers' licenses. Edwards answers no. Marc Ambinder says Clinton campaign manager Patti Solis Doyle couldn't have scripted the exchange better.

...Hillary's answers are laser-like. Informed, interesting to listen to and refreshing compared to care-bare Richardson and the others.

...The Kooch: "HELLO, HELLO, YOU MISSED ME." Hilarious!

...Hillary is the only grown-up on stage. Edwards now having trouble with yes or no questions on China and free-trade, ostensibly his strong suit....hmm. Can we have enough of this gotcha game and just let these guys speak?

...Richardson: "You mentioned all the labs...I was in charge of them." Puhleeeaze, dude. And he lied about his prior opposition to Yucca Mountain.

...Edwards booed loudly when he attacks Hillary again.

...Obama ends an attack on Hillary for voting with Kyle-Lieberman, with saying "I agree with Hillary" on her position to use diplomacy. Wolfe then reminds him he missed the vote on Iran. Not a good exchange for Obama.

...Marc Ambinder's comment filtering is annoying. What's he afraid of?

..."Undecideds" ZZZZzzzz. I'll always remember those "undecideds" with their little Frank Luntz sponsored dials rating Al Gore and George Bush, no offense...

...Hillary on the need for a bi-partisan commission to examine Social Security: "Back in 1983, when we had a real crisis in Social Security."

...Matthew Yglesias makes a good point. When all's said and done, these types of multi-candidate debates just make the media moderators desperate to score headlines. Generally these things are less of an issue in the final handful of debates between the party nominees.
...I should clarify, since I realized I wrote "ZZZZZzzz" above at the time of the "undecideds" questions. The reason their presence annoys me in debates is it's a cheap media stunt to suggest these people are undecided and just need the opportunity to ask a direct question or two. However, while the tenor of the recent Democratic debat moderation has tended to place Democrats on the wrong side of public opinion, there's no perfect way to run a debate like this. Some aspect of the moderation, the setup, the rules or the questions are going to be irritating. There's a good reason they've tried just about every imaginable format for these things and can't seem to find one that works. Also, let's keep in mind, these debates have all been sponsored by the cable news nets who are by their very nature tabloid in their political coverage.

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