Friday, September 26, 2008


So after getting a panic call from a friend but having had to TiVo the debates due to fatherly duties, I was prepared to see Obama having wilted under McCain's aged superiority.

Instead I saw what has already become the story of the debate -- the George H.W. Bush glance at the watch, the Al Gore sigh. John McCain did not once make contact with Barack Obama during the debate.

Wow, for someone claiming bipartisan credentials, nice way to say, "Contempt."

When I was in London during college and heard then-President Jimmy Carter debating Ronald Reagan, it seemed clear that Carter had won. But the folks watching it on television knew differently. So ever since then I've been cautious about assigning win/loss based even on my own TV viewing. Al Gore won the first 2000 debate on points, but George Bush won it (and I hate to say this) on demeanor. The pundits gave it to Al Gore right after, but a day or so later, nope.

I've been saying for this past rise in the polls that while Obama may be surging, more people are looking for a reason to vote against Obama than are looking for a reason to vote against McCain. So while concerned Obama fans like my friend may fret that he didn't take any opportunity to deliver a single knockout blow, what they may be learning is that Mr. Long-Term Strategy actually did all he needed to do to keep his momentum rolling. He made everyone comfortable voting for him who might be persuaded.

Yes, you President.

The proof:

According to CBS News / Knowledge Networks' poll of undecided voters:

40% of uncommitted voters who watched the debate tonight thought Barack Obama was the winner. 22% thought John McCain won. 38% saw it as a draw.

68% of these voters think Obama would make the right decision
about the economy. 41% think McCain would.

49% of these voters think Obama would make the right decisions about Iraq. 55% think McCain would.

More here, including some really beautiful pics of Michelle Obama and the look of love between the two of them. Establishment pundit, Mark Halperin giving Obama the big A- over McCain B-, with Obama scoring lowest (per my friend) on "Offense: B" and trouncing on "Style". McCain anger management dissected on TPM. And Frank Luntz with another one of his patented voter panels:

McCain needed more than a tie to win -- this is Obama's John Kennedy moment, and no one can say he doesn't get foreign policy from this point forward. But it's the lingering McContempt meme that will really continue to bleed McCain, as it shows both anger and weakness, a kind of literalization of his unwillingness to meet with foreign powers with whom we disagree.

And after a few trips off the reservation, it's nice to see Joe Biden backing up the message so forcefully:

Which begs the question, where do you think was Sarah Palin tonight?

Guess we'll see her again next Thursday. But for tonight, sleep well, Obamaholics.


Anonymous said...

Well...I'm happy that all the data seem to show that BO either won or tied last night, because I didn't see it that way. I thought McCain stomped him in a lot of places and left himself wide open for a death blow or two that BO never delivered.

C'est la vie.

One last: It's totally obvious that BO can, without much effort, get JM to blow a gasket any time he wants. Anytime he merely skirted near one of Gramps' lies, you could see Gramps' entire body clench like a fist. I expect that in the last debate BO will needle Gramps until he blows.

Erika said...

I don't know who this "friend" of yours is who was so sure BO had blown it, but clearly she needs to calm down. If I were her, I'd be feeling a little sheepish today.
So glad she was wrong!!
She would might like to watch the next debate with you. Possibly even from your lap, Nettertainment, where its safe and warm and Obama is always winning.

Mark Netter said...

While Nettertainment's lap is always inviting, it is reserved for Mrs. Nettertainment and his two children. However, a final debate party sounds like a fine idea, where coastal liberals can get together to gnash our teeth, chew our fingernails and fret over the great Middle American response together!

Erika said...

Just so's you know, that wasn't meant as a come-on. Really Nettertainment's lap to me is not a wild ride, but a safe, democratic port in the the shitstorm of present day politics. So shove over, kids!
And I find watching these events with friends is the only way to go. Too scary to be alone, Turretting at the television.

Anonymous said...

Hey, this place is hotter than!!!!