Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Who won last night's AFL-CIO debate?

Seriously, I think it was Chris Dodd. He didn't win it by a huge margin—John Edwards was a very close second, and then Dennis Kucinich pulled a respectable third—but Dodd was on fire. So was Edwards, but Dodd was maybe half a degree hotter. My support has been leaning toward Edwards lately, and it still is, but I think I like Dodd more than I used to. I never disliked Dodd, but his stock rose with me tonight.

I thought Clinton was subpar, and I thought Obama was a disaster last night. Both surprised me.

Joe "Loose Cannon" Biden characteristically made good points and made weirdly crazy points sometimes.

Bill Richardson pulled a fair performance, maybe sub-fair at times. He could have done better.

Where's Mike Gravel? I read that his campaign apparently forgot to return the questionnaire for the debate before its deadline. Somehow, I have a hunch that if it were the Clinton, Obama or Edwards campaigns, they would have gotten a little more leeway on the deadline. However, I also think there's a reason those "big three" campaigns managed to get their forms in on time: bigger campaign, bigger staff. Simple enough.

What throttles my mind is the way the talking heads on MSNBC declared victory for Clinton and Obama, said it was a disaster for Edwards, and ignored the other four candidates who were there that night. Were they watching the same debate? Who didn't see Obama's jittery, meek responses to every question except the one about sending troops into Pakistan? Who didn't hear Clinton's evasive, vague answers or notice the boos she got from the audience? The media is clueless. They have no idea what they're talking about. Too often talking heads are afraid to offer opinions that differ too much from what the national polls would predict. Clinton is still leading in national polls, but hell, who couldn't miss the fact that her performance at last night's debate was at best bland and, more accurately, disappointing?

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