PA Debate: The Morning After

Now that you've had some time to reflect on last night's Pennsylvania debate, what did you think?

Some journalists are outraged over the the questions. Of course, the questions in this debate were no different than those in previous debates that lacked substance and seemed designed to put a candidate on the hot seat -- the difference was that this time (for once) it was Obama, not Hilary getting the heat.

I've watched the debate twice. The second time I tried to view it through the lens of a Pennsylvania voter who wasn't familiar with the nitty gritty details of William Ayers and lapel pins. (I figured even they knew about Bitter-Gate and Rev. Wright and Bosnia.)

It was unfortunate that the substantive portion of the debate didn't focus more on issues of importance to PA voters. The PA polls have shown PA voters of both parties are very concerned about immigration, the economy, health care and terrorism. They are less concerned about the war. By economy, I don't think they mean capital gains taxes for the wealthy. I think they mean creating new jobs, maintaining the jobs they have, how to avoid foreclosure, feed their families and put something away for their retirement and their kids' education, and how to be able to deal with having to take care of elderly parents.


Immigration is an issue neither candidate has been stellar on. Hillary's crime plan came out this week, there's a lot more to it than 100,00 cops on the stret, a measure Obama also supports. I would have liked Hillary to describe her plan, Obama to critique it or agree with it, and say where he'd be different. I think they are as close as two peas in a pod.

I don't think a typical voter was looking for a "got-cha" moment. To my voter's eye, Hillary explained her detailed plans, with enthusiasm and in words we could understand, such as her plan for putting more cops on the street -- while Obama was kind of like a bump on a log.

On guns, they both skirted the issue.Their positions are identical. They both believe, as do I, that the Second Amendment conveys an individual right to bear arms. With the Supreme Court about to decide the issue, how credibie were their answers that they didn't have an answer because they didn't know the facts. That's just doublespeak. They have aides prepping them for the debates who could and should have expected this question and briefed the candidates. so they could have answered the gun question directly.

Bottom Line: Obama seemed more hesitant. In trying to choose his words so carefully, he appeared either indecisive, uninformed, and weak.

Hillary walked miles around him with her plans. She has one for everything and you can tell details and rationales for each.

A debate over the differences in their agenda would have been a debate worth watching. Instead of showcasing two bright candidates, they showcased how both might be weaker than John McCain.

Hillary was stronger, more confident, likable and, most importantly, more presidential. You could see her in that role. Obama came off defensive and a tad angry.

The nominee's job is just beginning at nomination. After that, she or he has to beat John McCain.

AS the voters are watching to see who they like the best, the super delegates watching are asking themselves, not just who can beat John McCain, but also after that, who has the knowledge and capital smarts and experience to get their agendas past Congress.

The problem with Obama is he's too inexperienced. He won't have enough clout with Congress if elected.

Hillary tonight showed she has what it takes. Obama was more, "Let me think on that, I'll get back to you in the morning.

Update: Comments now Closed

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  • I am curious as to why ABC (5.00 / 5) (#1)
    by felizarte on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 03:22:38 AM EST
    personalities Gibson and Stephanoupolous decided to take this tack in their moderating--what made them step back from the MSM chorus which up to this point had seemed to be the main cheering section of Obama's candidacy. Was it a network management decision?  Is this a signal of closer scrutiny of Barack from Pennsylvania until Puerto Rico?

    Because I have really been waiting for something like this from the media that might be an indication of a shift in the thinking of these big boys.

    I've been thinking about that... (5.00 / 4) (#32)
    by Maria Garcia on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:32:50 AM EST
    ...it may just be that all this time had elapsed since the last debate and in the interim their had been so many "flaps" and most of them involved Obama. And also now he is definitely the front runner. It was his turn. Still, it is rather amazing that they did it because if you listen to the coverage of the debate this morning on NBC, you would not have gotten any kind of picture of what happened.

    Ditto NPR (5.00 / 2) (#36)
    by Fabian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:45:44 AM EST
    They highlighted Clinton's Tuzla apology and her "Obama can win." reply.

    I can't help thinking that it is not (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by MaxUS on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:42:46 AM EST
    good news for Obama that they're focussing on Clinton. Doesn't that send the message to the soft support that what Clinton says is what's worth reporting.

    Positive or negative coverage at this point is pretty much just noise except to note that when both candidates speak only Clinton's remarks are well...remarkable.


    Selective Media Outrage (5.00 / 2) (#63)
    by STLDeb on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:57:14 AM EST
    Wow some of the media (link in article, huffpo, dkos, etc.) is going just BALLISTIC over this debate.  

    I look at this through an unbiased lens (as I'm  on the McCain bandwagon), however that being said, I thought the debate was fair.  Hillary scored some points, in my opinion.  I was upset that ABC didn't follow up when Hillary brought up the Hamas connection with regard to Obama's church.

    I did mention to my husband last night though that Barack is a VERY charismatic speaker and therein lies the problem for Hillary.  BUT, Hillary was definitely on her game last night and did a fantastic job.

    I mean, come on, do these people not realize that Barack has totally gotten a free ride up until now.  


    Right. Obama could read the phone (5.00 / 4) (#64)
    by MarkL on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:59:01 AM EST
    book and people would be mesmerized.
    He gets away with a lot of muddled-headed answers because people aren't really listening to what he says.

    Cultural differences? (5.00 / 2) (#70)
    by Fabian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:06:02 AM EST
    I hear that preacher-style oratory and I immediately become suspicious, not comforted.  Perhaps you have to be raised to associate that style of speaking with warm fuzzies and not someone who wants you to feel more and think less.

    Plus, the religious cadence is another (5.00 / 5) (#146)
    by derridog on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:18:53 AM EST
    example of Obama's fraudulence. He wasn't raised in the south. He is a very good mimic. Here he's miming MLK. Most of the things he says on the campaign trail, not to mention his policies, are lifted from others. He doesn't have a core set of beliefs, as far as I can tell from watching his actions and how he ducks and weaves when cornered to try to spin whatever he says in such a way as to placate his listeners.   Although Hillary sometimes does this too, i believe that she does have a core set of beliefs that she has been acting on   for the last 30+/- years.   I believe that because I'm a little older than her and have been watching her for the last 30 years.  Obama is just in this for himself. That's really the only subject he's comfortable with.

    Is it any surprise he identifies (none / 0) (#160)
    by Fabian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:32:49 AM EST
    so strongly with black preachers?  If Obama wasn't a politician, it's easy enough to see him as a minister.

    You only think that because he speaks like a (none / 0) (#204)
    by derridog on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:15:39 AM EST
    preacher and he only does that because he is trying to associate himself with religion and with the Civil Rights movement and MLK, so he can get votes.

    This doesn't make him likely to take up a religious vocation. The man is into power, not self-effacement and hard work on behalf of God and the poor and downtrodden.


    Donnie McClurkin? (none / 0) (#211)
    by Fabian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:28:44 AM EST
    Being an entertainer is not an easy way to make a living.  Being a preacher with his own flock and his own church - that's stability and at least some power.

    Look at the mega churches.  Look at the Right Wing Power of God machines.  There's power in it.  There's money in it.  No doubt.

    The truth is that there is more potential in politics than religion.  You are right there.


    Speaking Style (5.00 / 2) (#159)
    by cal1942 on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:29:52 AM EST
    Interesting you should bring that up.  I was talking to a neighbor a few days ago, a good lifelong Democrat.  He told me that he and his wife watched an Obama speech and felt uneasy and couldn't quite figure out the style.  When I said preacher he shouted "that's it, a preacher."

    Now these people attend services (Roman Catholic) weekly without fail. It's not that they're offended by religion, quite the contrary, it's that a politician using that style is completely out of place and in large measure insulting. It sounds more like a scam than a civic declaration.


    Here is the problem with that thruth, Jeralyn (none / 0) (#130)
    by Salt on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:05:09 AM EST
    called it Obama appeared weak to many of us.  To be mesmerized by the predators or Us speech, only I Obama can change your feelings of helpless to wondrous hopefulness, you would need to start with a shared belief system a cultural pathology of dependence that many women have long ago rejected instead choosing self-efficacy a belief that our own contributions influence the events that affect their lives.

    The deal is the debate was fairER (5.00 / 4) (#84)
    by Virginian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:24:20 AM EST
    most of the questions were actually in bounds and relevant...the problem is that since the last debate, the "issues" raised, predominately surround Obama.

    Was ABC supposed to ask irrelevant questions of HRC to counter balances those such as Ayers, Wright, etc. asked of Obama? I know that the Obama supporters would say yes (although not in the words of my construction)...but the HRC supporters by and large are saying..."this is what should have happened months ago, no more pass" or "see how it feels? You don't like it either."


    The slowed down roller coaster won't loop de loop (none / 0) (#133)
    by Ellie on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:07:27 AM EST
    You can't have upwards and forward momentum forever; something's gotta give. I thought that once the avalanching combination of "news", a few quick and heady successes, a whack of donations and bandwaggoning -- all topped up with the slobbering excitement of a chance to bash Clinton AKA "The Clintons" -- stopped feeding each other, Obama's weaknesses would become apparent.

    Lately, the news has had more soundbytes of him hemming and hawing than the earlier, daily, enthralling ones showing him yelling to screaming crowds (the kind of clips that spike into the background drone of the 'snooze' and make people stop and pay attention.)

    Except for the most shameless Obama cheerleader, trying to pump up this dud of a candidate when it's leaking air is like the futile exercise of Michigan J. Frog's handler when he tries to take the act on the road. (Free beer and a shot anyone?)

    I missed the whole debate and only caught some clips.


    they say they attack the front-runner harder (5.00 / 1) (#114)
    by ruffian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:56:21 AM EST
    At least that is the excuse MSNBC gave when they went after Clinton in that Oct. 30 debate.  DailyHowler showed that no front-runner was ever attacked like Clinton was that night, but that is their stroy anyway. Maybe it is ABC's too.

    BOs flaws are just too (3.00 / 4) (#61)
    by Talktruth on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:54:15 AM EST
    bad to ignore.  Sure George Bush was an idiot-shill for corporations.  But he wasn't an anti-American who fraternized with terrorists, stayed with Wright for two decades, etc.  Here's the note I sent Charlie:

    "You rocked last night, Charlie!  What an even-handed debate.  You asked the hard questions.  And now, even if the extremely unqualified, and possibly dangerous, Barack Obama becomes the nominee (God forbid), you will have made sure it's not because of you or ABC News.  You asked the questions that needed to be asked.  Please hammer him on why he doesn't want FL & MI counted next.  Thanks!"

    I gushed a little, but we need to strongly encourage that kind of behavior.


    I agree with Jeralyn. (5.00 / 2) (#2)
    by LoisInCo on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 03:27:43 AM EST
    However I think Obama missed an opportunity to explain what HE believes about the Wright controversy. He has spent so much time reiterating what he does NOT agree with, he does little in the way of explaining what he DOES. To be true he tosses in the good works the church does, but he never personalizes his faith in concrete terms. Just my take on that.

    I get the sense (5.00 / 2) (#31)
    by stillife on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:32:48 AM EST
    that he's not really religious, that he joined the church for political reasons, to gain cred and connections in the AA community.  Not that there's anything wrong with that - I'm not religious myself and I find it ridiculous that polls show that Americans would not elect an atheist President.

    So while I don't blame him for putting on a charade, since he is a pol after all, it does point to his character (does he have any deeply held convictions?) and his judgment (why did he sit in that church for 20 years, listening to hate speech?).  


    I have (none / 0) (#80)
    by slr51 on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:18:02 AM EST
    biracial sons and they were raised mostly by the white side of the family.

    Belonging to a church that is at the heart of black community is extremely understandable to me (and even more so to my sons). It is only partially about religion.


    I know. (none / 0) (#14)
    by Fabian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 05:00:54 AM EST
    With twenty years to contemplate and grow in his faith, I'd think he'd know what he believes in.  He came to religion as an adult and made a deliberate, adult decision to embrace it.

    Well, I'm about ready to break the TeeVee (5.00 / 5) (#3)
    by nycstray on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 03:43:06 AM EST
    ABC is now framing the first part of the debate as if Clinton brought up the issues. They did that the previous hour also and on Dateline. Oh, and there was "no clear winner", lol!~

    I thought Hillary rocked. I liked her answer to the gun issue when she talked about it on a NYS level. I thought her responses on the war and economy were solid in delivery and she also stood her ground. She delivered several good Dem party unity responses in a positive manner and was very believable. I agree with your assessment of Obama's delivery/responses. He's running too soon and trying to be everything to everyone. McCain is more solid in his delivery of flip flops, oy.

    I really hope the voters in the upcoming states saw the debate for what it was, not what the spin is telling them they saw.

    If the American People... (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by Dadler on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 03:43:40 AM EST
    ...cannot connect the clear dots between the murderous 300 million dollars-plus PER DAY wasted in Iraq and the sinking US economy, well, there's little to no hope.  Is there really that kind of dunderheaded disconnect?  Are people actually incapable of seeing the two as inseparable?

    I am out of the country this week, (none / 0) (#20)
    by 0 politico on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 05:52:26 AM EST
    so I did not see the debate.  But, what is the context of your question?  Was there a debate moment or not which struck this cord.

    Generally, I do not believe most people think of economics on the macro scale, so there is the potential for many to miss the interconnect between war expenditures and the economic trade offs incurred back home.


    Yes, they are (none / 0) (#149)
    by BevD on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:20:14 AM EST
    incapable of connecting the dots and if you wonder why, look at the performance of the debated moderators last night.  This is the state of our political discourse and it has been in this state for quite some time.

    I'm most disturbed by the New kind of Old politics (5.00 / 11) (#6)
    by boredmpa on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 04:08:43 AM EST
    Until today, I wasn't aware how badly the internet mob had been behaving.  I mean I'd seen the spam on the nytimes, but didn't know what was going on.  Now that I browsed facebook and kos, I'm horrified and worry it's going to swing the primary and lose the election in November.

    One-Ballot stuffing for optimum spin.  Both ABC and MSNBC polls are within 2k of each other on votes and very much favoring Obama. Of course they are...because kos, mybarackobama, and facebook groups are all encouraging 15k plus young folks to go to every site that has a voting option and click away.  Taking "not scientific" to an all new level.

    And that brings me to Two:

    There are multiple posts, one with 550+ comments just focusing on spamming ABC with disapproval and trying to get steph fired.

    I have a serious problem with people spamming phone/email.  I mean, organizing a boycott is one thing, but it sounds like an angry and very undemocratic mob--especially when dealing with speech issues.  Not to mention it reminds me of the conservative group that made almost all of the complaints about indecency to the fcc.  Is this the whiniest generation? Is this how you deal with debate or dissent? By shutting out the voices of those that disagree with you?

    Make your statement, make your vote, hold a protest--but don't harass the hell out of people.  And spinning the vote counters to make your candidate look better sure doesn't lead to a new kind of politics.


    It's interesting though that AOL shows Hillary leading in all their online polling.  But I haven't seen anyone linkbombing them and they have CAPTCHAs on their straw poll...whoops yes they HAVE been stuffing them, but they can't overcome the AOL demographics

    This thread is hilarious in its frustration at not easily being able to stuff the AOL polls.

    Ah, welcome to my reality. (5.00 / 7) (#13)
    by Fabian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 04:57:45 AM EST
    I didn't watch the debate.  My bedtime is early - I was up at 3 am today.  First I checked here - hard-to-read comment threads make me read posts only.  Heard about the outrage at dkos and went over there.  Almost every. single. reclist. diary was AttackTheNetwork! .  

    Okay.  There was a debate.  There were candidates and questions and all the usual stuff(unfortunately) and dkos is breaking out the torches and pitchforks.    Issues?  Substance?  Detailed and gritty analysis of the debate?  Not any more.  

    Is that the face of the Five Percenters?


    BTW (5.00 / 7) (#15)
    by Fabian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 05:08:36 AM EST
    When Glenn Greenwald says that we should let the right wing frame the issues and our candidates("elitist" is a RW brand), I think he means we should fight back against the dishonest framing and those who use it specifically - no matter which Democrat is portrayed that way.

    I could go for some serious Unity on this particular fight.  Unity, not hypocrisy.  If the netroots think that it's bad when it happens to Obama and storm the castle, then I expect them to scream outrage just as loudly when it happens to Clinton.


    No OBama supporter (5.00 / 4) (#52)
    by TeresaInPa on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:40:37 AM EST
    should EVER say that anything is a right wing frame.  Not after Obama himself has been auditioning for Republican house manager for the impeachment of Bill Clinton.

    Amazing. Obama must have done poorly (5.00 / 1) (#55)
    by BarnBabe on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:44:41 AM EST
    To see so much outrage, they must have thought that Hillary did well with her questions and BHO did not. I feel that no matter how much we point out to them that they have become the silly season, it will not matter. You know in mob rule there is that point of frenzy which they are at now. After that subsides there will be a lot of carnage left to bury. I personally hope it will be Hillary and that will calm them down to be able to attack McCain. Hopefully in a more professional manner. They might as well be on that space ship with Applewhite in Rancho Santa Fe.

    [edit} should NOT let the... (none / 0) (#19)
    by Fabian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 05:44:37 AM EST

    lol (5.00 / 3) (#18)
    by boredmpa on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 05:42:50 AM EST
    up at 3 am!  well, i'm headed to bed at 3:40. i dunno what time zone j is in, but us elite-coasters err i mean SF'ers are a few hours behind.

    actually, im p'offed with the equating of SF with billionaire row (thanks BO).  There are plenty of reasons to trash SF (classism/racism), but this city  can't be that elitist as a whole when it has day-to-day class issues and isn't doing too shabby on the murder front.  


    Axelrod is an "astroturfing" specialist (5.00 / 4) (#27)
    by myiq2xu on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:18:12 AM EST
    Faux grassroot organizing is just one of the services he offers.

    Spam polls, then use the polls as evidence your client won.

    "Work the refs" by telling the OFB to make calls to a news network and complain about them treating your client just like the other candidate.

    It's all part of the OFB haka routine.


    Then shouldn't we be sending kudos to ABC? (none / 0) (#58)
    by BarnBabe on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:52:06 AM EST
    It might be nice to send a note thanking them for their professional journalism in conducting the debate in a fair and balanced manner. I suspect that they are accussing George of being easy on Hillary because of their past association.

    Have you seen these demographics? (5.00 / 4) (#7)
    by boredmpa on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 04:16:38 AM EST
    I'd love to know your thoughts on this nytimes op-ed that points to rural working class as voting less on social issues than suburbanites.  Or some such.


    bedtime for me.

    eh sorry if the above is OT (none / 0) (#8)
    by boredmpa on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 04:19:47 AM EST
    There was no overnight thread, but it seems relevant and highly interesting.  Haven't seen the numbers though, but it makes sense to me.  I trusted gov't more before moving from NC to SF.  And getting an MPA just made it worse.

    You mean Obama was WRONG??? (none / 0) (#62)
    by MarkL on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:56:22 AM EST
    I"m not shocked. I thought that the small town voters were against Obama because they are smart, myself.

    Wow! (none / 0) (#166)
    by gyrfalcon on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:38:46 AM EST
    Those are stunning statistics!  I'd like to see how somebody would argue he's not right, just as a reality check.  I wonder if this author has said anything in the past about "What's the Matter With Kansas?" which I confess I haven't read, but I think the whole book is based on the opposite premise.

    EVERYBODY shoudl read this op-ed.


    It wasn't like other debates (5.00 / 2) (#9)
    by jr on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 04:20:33 AM EST
    The questions may have been similar to the superficial and vapid ones asked in previous debates, but I can't think of another debate EVER that started with 45 straight minutes of them without touching on a serious policy question.

    And I'm sorry, but there are simply not enough minutes in a debate to waste the first 45 on inside baseball and horserace analysis.  We're in a recession AND a war, and the best they can do is three-quarters of an hour on Wright and Tuzla?

    I'm not surprised that David Brooks liked the questions, nor that the rest of America seems to have thought the whole affair a travesty and a disservice by ABC.

    The "rest of America?" (5.00 / 6) (#11)
    by myiq2xu on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 04:27:05 AM EST
    Don't you mean the "rest of the fanboiz?"

    The polls say Hillary stomped Barry into goo.

    The OFB are just upset because Barry finally got treated like a Democrat.


    It was just like the other debates (5.00 / 7) (#41)
    by angie on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:59:55 AM EST
    except this time Obama got some questions designed to put him in the hot seat too.  The Obama boys are outraged! pfft.  Those questions -- Ayers, Wright, "bittergate" were not tabliod -- they are questions about flaps that are out there and ones that will surely be used against Obama by the GOP if he is the nominee.  In fact, it was all pretty "soft" compared to what he would face in the fall.  Don't believe me? Well, just remember that the GOP made Kerry -- a man who at least went to Vietnam, regardless of his actions there, look like a traitor and a coward against a guy who didn't eve bother to show up for his National Guard duty.  Just imagine what they can do to Obama next to a guy who spent 5 years getting tortured because he was serving his country.  I have always felt that the Obama camp was doing him no favors to try and protect him, pretending these things "are over." Last night I was proven right.  He knew these questions are out there, and he should have been better prepared to answer them, because they are  going to get worse. Crying "unfair" now isn't going to change that.

    Swift Boating (5.00 / 2) (#46)
    by ricosuave on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:19:37 AM EST
    The swift boating worked so well against Kerry that even sympathetic folks like you will couch mention of his Vietnam service with saying he "at least went to Vietnam."  The man went into combat and got three purple hearts!

    But I agree 100%.  If Obama is the nominee, McCain can start measuring the drapes.  On the plus side, we will get diversity.  He is the only Scotch-Irish white guy in the race right now (outnumbered 2:1--a real minority!).


    key word here unfortunatly "crying" (5.00 / 5) (#79)
    by moll on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:17:28 AM EST
    Democrats have got to get over the idea that they can whine and yet still be considered leadership material.

    There is a legitimate point to be made if there is bias, but it cannot be overemphasized often enough that whether it's fair or not, the candidate must take it in stride, look strong and in control. Must must must.

    Obama didn't come across as strong or "Presidential". Ultimately, whether it's biased or not is beside the point (and that's true for Clinton too: fair is nice but unfair cannot be treated as an excuse).


    Hey, they restrained themselves. They didn't ask (5.00 / 1) (#167)
    by derridog on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:42:23 AM EST
    about Rezko and Nadhmi Auchi.

    Did you hear (none / 0) (#136)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:08:41 AM EST
    ...the GOP made Kerry -- a man who at least went to Vietnam, regardless of his actions there, look like a traitor...

    Did you hear Kerry's own words when he testified before congress?  Those damn swiftboaters replaying Kerry's own words.  How unfair.


    you left out the relevant part (5.00 / 1) (#164)
    by angie on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:36:02 AM EST
    which was "against a guy who didn't bother showing up for his National Guard duty."  And that is the relevant part because Obama will be up against a real war hero, which will make the GOP's hit job that much easier.

    Oh, don't you just know it!!! (none / 0) (#212)
    by FlaDemFem on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:31:57 AM EST
    I can see the ads now.. opening with McCain's service and capture, torture in Viet Nam, and at the end of the ad, Michelle Obama saying this is the first time she has been proud of her country. McCain doing a state fair visit chatting with farmers with the "bitter" quote from Obama at the end of the ad.. I mean, it would be so easy. What the Obamas don't seem to realize is that in politics when you open your mouth and say something stupid, your opponent gets to use it against you. And since neither of them seems to be able to say anything without inserting foot into mouth, it's going to be a massacre in the GE if Obama is the nominee. And speaking of Michelle, she hasn't been around much lately. I guess his advisors told him to muzzle her before she single-handedly scuttles his candidacy.

    That is, the rest of America... (none / 0) (#10)
    by jr on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 04:24:18 AM EST
    ...except, apparently, Armando.

    Really, this was worse than what NBC did.  At least their unfair and immaterial questions at least vaguely touched on issues of substance.  ABC didn't even pretend that they were doing anything but pitting the candidates against each other for the sheer amusement of the moderators.  This wasn't a debate so much as a presidential cockfight, and everyone was destined for the stockpot by the end.


    I'm done watching debates (5.00 / 3) (#16)
    by MaxUS on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 05:11:40 AM EST
    at this point, I'm so in the hole for my candidate that I'd be watching for sheer entertainment value, and I can get that elsewhere.

    What's interesting at this point is something that was hinted about upthread about the shift in the reporting.

    ABC seems to be going the way of Fox in their "balanced" bais against Democrats. Love her or hate her, Rosie O'Donnell did manage to expose the politics of a successful ABC executive producer in the news division, so the reports on the slant of this debate are not really a surprise to me.

    It will be interesting to see if the blogger boyz pushback has any effect. If they don't manage to shift the coverage while Hillary is still in the race, then, I think, November is lost if Obama is the nominee.


    I e-mailed a thank you (none / 0) (#88)
    by BarnBabe on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:28:46 AM EST
    And I told them to please not pay attention to the hit that they are taking because of some progressive blogs as they do not represent the entire USA. Honest journalism should prevail.

    Blind loyalty in the mass media (5.00 / 5) (#17)
    by karen for Clinton on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 05:39:26 AM EST
    I went to sleep soon after the debate ended confident that a few of the troubling things about Obama had been finally discussed in front of millions of viewers and that his pandering and side-stepping had been pierced.

    I turned on the computer this morning to find all the news agencies had headlines with the only news they deemed worthy from the debate:

    Clinton thinks Obama can Win!

    Swept under the rug after being aired:

    Exelon, Farrakhan, Rezko, Auchi, family and other racial Muslim ties, Wright, Hamas, Ayers, Blago, and a host of corrupt allies from the cesspool from whence he sprang. Mi and Fl, flipflopping on the environment, guns nafta etc. depending on whom he was speaking to at the time and his lack of a strong stance as well as his backpeddling on dozens of issues and his total unpreparedness to lead anyone but the sheep, the handing of legislations to him to bolster his shabby record, his prior senate races and the dirty politics associated with them all, his lack of any actual unity history summed up so potently by his wife in her "finally proud" moment... and all those other things for the core democrats to balk at let alone the republican spin.

    Thanks to Charlie and George for numerous attempts to shine some light on my concerns and hold his feet temporarily to the fire.

    While it might be too little too late, it was at least a momentary comfort to know somebody out there is paying attention to his many devils in the many details.

    One of the "Got ya" moments was certainly O saying he disowned Wright and his being called on it by George politely but swiftly.  Also it came through to me loud and clear when Hillary said she had specific plans FIRST although she didn't out him for copying her campaign programs strongly enough.

    Overall it was certainly better handled and hopefully put some spirit of researching those issues into the media and the public minds.

    It left questions unanswered and merely led the way to further discussion without resolving any of the charges.  On further investigation it is clear he is not who he claims to be and his Oil ad and his other ads are devious lies...

    The debate sent the message "caveat emptor" and the tide is hopefully turning before we are all washed out by the flood of O!

    Right on (5.00 / 2) (#90)
    by ruffian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:30:21 AM EST
    Or, to rephrase, yes, yes, yes

    With the whining the Obama fans are now (belatedly) doing about the media, they are missing the fact that the media is still on their side.

    All the news I have heard this morning opens with a variation on 'the big takeaway last night was that Hillary thinks Obama can win.'


    Uh (5.00 / 1) (#170)
    by gyrfalcon on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:45:32 AM EST
    what does "family and other racial Muslim ties" mean?

    I REALLY don't like this kind of insinuation.  I don't even know what "racial Muslim" is supposed to mean.


    All that time... (5.00 / 7) (#21)
    by OrangeFur on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 05:54:51 AM EST
    ... the media was ganging up on Hillary Clinton, the Obama people stayed silent or eagerly urging them on.

    Now, for one night, the tables were turned. How can they be surprised that the tiger wasn't tame?

    We told them so. (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by Fabian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:00:44 AM EST
    Sorry - had to get it out of my system.

    (BTW - some still insist that Hillary has been getting a pass from the media.  Yes, the same media that looked at her schedule to find out where she was when.... )


    Was this debate really any different (5.00 / 3) (#22)
    by Fabian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 05:57:38 AM EST
    from the previous debates?

    I miserably confess that I have not watched even one in full.  But even back in January, the complaints were:

    Too many "gotcha" questions.
    Ridiculous hypotheticals.
    Not enough, if any, issues questions especially health care and the economy - people's top concerns.
    Serious format problems.

    Was this debate any different from the previous ones, disregarding partisan complaints?  Because that's the new cry at dkos and I suspect it's nonsense - but it may be worth discussion.

    The Boiz had no complaints (5.00 / 5) (#25)
    by myiq2xu on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:11:52 AM EST
    when the MSNBC goons were piling on Hillary.

    Now that the shoe is on the other foot, their heads are exploding.


    It was different (5.00 / 5) (#30)
    by stillife on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:29:00 AM EST
    This is the first debate where Obama has received the treatment that Hillary has been subjected to for months.  I agree that many of the questions were unsubstantive and related to character and baggage rather than issues, but that's the vetting process.   Wright, Farrakhan, Ayers, the flag lapel pin, Bittergate - all this stuff will be used by the Republicans against Obama if he's the nominee.  

    It's mind-boggling that many Obama supporters seem to think that he should just be handed the keys to the White House, no questions asked.


    Obama has baggage? (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by Fabian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:47:25 AM EST
    You don't say!

    I thought Clinton had all the baggage - or so I've been told.  [smirk]


    We all know the issues by now (5.00 / 1) (#101)
    by BarnBabe on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:41:13 AM EST
    We know the few differences and there are few. BHO has mirrored his platform so closely as to blur the differences for the voters. Good move for BHO. At this point, I believe that discussing the elephants in the room was refreshing. Putting it all out on the table told us more about the person. Better move for HRC.

    I really wish people would stop (5.00 / 3) (#134)
    by ChrisO on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:07:56 AM EST
    referring to Obama's San Francisco remarks and Rev. Wright as insubstantial tabloid fodder. The flag pin stuff, OK. But last night was the first time that I've seen Obama asked directly why he told Wright a year ago that his sermons can be a little rough, if he never heard any of the remarks that caused the controversy. This was the first chance to really question him directly, and as we've seen once again, he's terrible dealing with questions that he should have fully anticipated.

    I said this in another thread, but I also think that a candidate's comments on what he thinks are the beliefs of the voters, and what motivates them to vote, are completely relevant. The problem is that Obama's supporters think once they tell us what he really meant and his campaign applies its own spin, his original comments somehow disappear into the ether, and are no longer a fit topic for discussion.

    And can we please stop referring to it as "bittergate"? Besides the fact that anything-gate is so overused, the continual focus on bitterness plays right into Obama's spin, that the whole controversy is about whether people are bitter, which as we know is not the issue at all. The press is doing enough work for Obama, I hate seeing Clinton supporters falling into the same trap.


    BHO cut Charlie off on the one Wright thing (none / 0) (#208)
    by BarnBabe on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:21:28 AM EST
    BHO made his remarks and Charlie started to say, but why did you disinvite him? And BHO just cut his sentence off before he could finish it. That would have been a good question. If you think he would be ok and you knew nothing, why did you have to tell him he could not be there at the first ceremony. Interesting.

    I didn't watch the debate but I gather that (5.00 / 6) (#28)
    by tigercourse on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:20:04 AM EST
    Obama was treated roughly by the moderators. And the Obama supporters are up in arms about this.

    They Do Not Get It. And I do not think they ever will.

    First, he's a Democrat and they are the media. Welcome to the real world.

    Second, when it happens to Clinton you guys cheer. If you are going to encourage an unobjective, goal driven media don't get all outraged when it comes back to nible on you.

    You are so right (5.00 / 5) (#34)
    by stefystef on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:43:47 AM EST
    When Hillary was getting her butt kicked by the media every single day, it was okay and the Obama followers cheered every time.

    Now Obama gets roughed up and there are screaming bloody murder.  But I thought bringing up Ayers and the Weather Underground is ridiculous.   How does this matter to the American people?  Hillary was in her right to address it.


    Hillary was the clear winner (5.00 / 6) (#29)
    by stillife on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:20:05 AM EST
    clear to me, anyway!  I don't expect to hear about her victory in the MSM, though.  I don't know how many voters choose a candidate based on debates, but that's how I ended up supporting Hillary, from watching the debates.  I want a strong President who has a full grasp of the issues, a commitment to Democratic values and the ability to think on her feet.

    Obama's debate performance has improved somewhat over the months, but he comes across as tentative, insincere and stumbling.  He's great (so they say) in front of a teleprompter and adoring crowds, but his lackluster debating skills do not inspire confidence in his ability to deal in a challenging situation, be it a recalcitrant Congress or a hostile foreign leader.

    I didnt watch the whole thing (5.00 / 3) (#40)
    by Rainsong on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:59:17 AM EST
     - just saw highlights and snatches of re-runs.
    Never been one for debates anyway, and I suspect most voters don't either, but was interesting to see Obama have moments of discomfort with his body language. Wheras Hillary did seem excited, motivated and keen to get moving on the work ahead for the future.

    But my bubble of confidence has burst almost immediately :(

    Scanning the news headlines has me depressed
    - again -. Too many spouting how she supports Obama's electability, too many still spouting polls that she has lost most of her lead in Pennsylvania, losing (badly) in the other remaining states, rumours and hints of Sebelius being running mate to give women voters a consolation prize, too many hinting her graciousness in the debate towards Obama's electability means she is building up to a cool gracious concession speech next week.

    I'm sure most here either know, or can imagine what most of the blogs are saying, because most the Obama blogs seem to outnumber all the rest (neutral, apathetic or pro-Clinton) by about 20-to-1. Newspapers, media outlets regional, national, what-have-you all outnumber 20-to-1 or more too.  

    Even re-visiting the SUSA polls isn't working for me this time, because its as if they don't exist. Nobody is mentioning them. Not even to trash them as being innaccurate and irrelevant. How does SUSA survive?

    Even talkleft isn't cheering me up this time :( Its just not enough. -sigh-

    I'm sorry Jeralyn, BTD - I rarely ever go to places like Taylor Marsh or No Quarter, but I really need some reassurance and comfort, like a huge dose of chocolate. I'll check back later.


    Let me tell you this (5.00 / 1) (#113)
    by angie on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:55:32 AM EST
    and I hate saying it, but if Obama gets the nomination and picks a female as VP as a "consolation prize" I will stay home.  I've had enough patronizing for one election.

    I went over to Orange and saw it for myself (5.00 / 6) (#35)
    by kmblue on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:43:51 AM EST
    Absolute rage at ABC for dissing their man, and calls for pitchforks and flames.
    Absolutely no admission that this role reversal was old news to Clinton supporters.
    "Maturity" is the operative word here.

    Clinton's performance wasn't flawness, but it was outstanding next to Obama's.  I keep praying she'll get the nomination and the presidency despite the Media, the fanboys, and the odds.

    OT (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by Fabian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:51:54 AM EST
    You should know better.  With the mood they are in now, they will not listen to anyone who points out the absurdities.

    Maybe Hunter of Meteor Blades can get through to them, but I honestly expect to see several front pagers fanning the flames.  

    I can't wait to BTD's round up of the Five Percenters' reactions and their wafer thin rationales.


    Even the "neutral" bloggers (5.00 / 2) (#42)
    by myiq2xu on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:05:54 AM EST
    are repeating the OFB memes.

    Where was the outrage when Hillary was getting all the "gotcha" questions, and the media was fluffing Barry's pillows?


    pillow fight! (none / 0) (#115)
    by moll on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:56:29 AM EST
    ...they're just mad cuz hillary stole barry's pillow?

    not flawless? (1.00 / 1) (#73)
    by slr51 on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:09:18 AM EST
    Yeah - well her lying swiftboating attempt re: Ayers interview that was given before 9-11, feigning outrage and pretending it happened after 9-11 and was in reference to the twin tower collapse was as Rovian as anything I've ever heard come out of a Democrat's mouth.

    Though I suppose depending on your perspective that might have been seen as just one more effective tactic.


    Hillary said (5.00 / 1) (#188)
    by Molly Pitcher on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:59:35 AM EST
    "published on 9/11," according to what I found.  Now tell me, please, why Ayers should be given a pass because he'd already said it.  Saying you should have done more bombing is not a good thing, before or after 9/11.    Is it a case of 2000 dead make a news story, while one person dead doesn't?  You're just as dead if you are killed by a bomb or a handgun as if you are killed by a big terrorist attack or an automatic weapon.  

    The bias is showing in the treatment (5.00 / 5) (#39)
    by badu on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:52:37 AM EST
    of the daily Gallup poll.  Yesterday all the Obama fans were screaming about how he had the biggest lead yet in Gallup's daily tracking poll.  Today - there is a 3 point change, in Hillary's favor.  And not a word from the pundits or Obama fans.

    The MOE (none / 0) (#87)
    by slr51 on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:26:56 AM EST
    of this poll is 3% or more. A 10 point lead is statistically significant a 3 point point is not.

    The poll that will count most with SDs (none / 0) (#176)
    by slr51 on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:51:17 AM EST
    Via Economic Times this morning:

    "A poll by ABC News/Washington Posed released yesterday shows that Democrats now believe that Obama is more likely to win in November elections by a huge margin of 62 to 31 per cent. This takes away her major argument to super delegates, who are likely to finally decide on the candidate, that she is more likely to win the election."


    Having them believe that Obama will win (none / 0) (#192)
    by derridog on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:04:37 AM EST
    isn't the same thing as everyone WANTING Obama to win.  If you listen to the MSM, you would think she has absolutely no chance. But if she has absolutely no chance, why are the Ombamaites frothing at the mouth in hysterics at this very moment?  They should be calm and disdainful at the petty annoyance of this Huckabee-like minor character pulling at the hem of their anointed one.

    Electability Debate (5.00 / 6) (#43)
    by Munibond on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:09:31 AM EST
    I thought the moderators focused appropriately on topics that go to electability.  At this point, that is the primary concern of many Democratic voters.  Obama supporters are hypocritical for complaining about ABC after giving NBC/MSNBC a pass, and they are naive to think that Obama would in the GE be permitted to simply sidestep questions or blithely lie about his past relationships, activities and political positions.

    The candidates could have put a stop (5.00 / 2) (#44)
    by ruffian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:12:11 AM EST
    to it, but they chose not to.  They talked on and on and on about the meaningless stuff. Obama dug his holes deeper and Hillary piled on, which was payback for all the times Obama piled on her.

    The questions were no more meaningless then ones asked at the other debates.  Wright and BitterGate go to the heart of Obama's electablility in the fall.  Of course those are relevant topics for the debate, and that is the context Obama should have answered them in  Hillary actually 'got' that better.  Obama had a chance to say how he would fight off those attacks in the fall, and all he did was say Hillary would get attacked too.

    I am so tired of the Hillary did it too (5.00 / 2) (#132)
    by BarnBabe on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:07:03 AM EST
    I mean, if they said that they heard he pooped, would his response be HRC did it too?  He is not ready. He can be ready for the future but right now, he  does not have the experience. I always knew experience was a factor, but I thought intelligence would make up for that. Being able to deliver a speech well will not make a President.

    Look at GW when at news conferences. These are the type of questions a POTUS would have to face. This is a true test of how a leader would respond.


    How many people would have watched (5.00 / 4) (#45)
    by ruffian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:16:56 AM EST
    if they expected 90 minutes of high-minded discussion?  I'm sure haf the Kos people writing letters would not even have watched it if they did not expect the Wright and Bittergate questions to be asked.  The difference is that they thought Obama would 'rock' in his answers.  He had the chance to do that, but didn't.  

    ABC is in it for ratings, like everyone else.

    The overall (5.00 / 8) (#47)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:24:17 AM EST
    message from the debate is that Obama can't handle the heat. There's no way he can stand up to the GOP became obvious last night.

    or world leaders (none / 0) (#111)
    by phillhrrll on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:50:32 AM EST
    they'd roll him

    My last strange thought before going to work... (5.00 / 5) (#48)
    by Maria Garcia on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:36:40 AM EST
    ....oddly enough, even though Clinton cleaned Obama's clock, this morning is the first time in many weeks that I think I could see myself voting for Obama in the GE if he wins the nomination...and I'll tell you why...he seems more like a Democrat to me when he's bashed by the media. Isn't that funny? BTD supports him because he is a media darling and I think that I oppose him most on those grounds. Oh well, I'll ponder that one a little more.

    I know what you mean (5.00 / 3) (#53)
    by stillife on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:42:21 AM EST
    I said to my husband that it almost made me like him a little bit.  Almost.

    Nope (5.00 / 1) (#142)
    by BarnBabe on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:14:06 AM EST
    I use to like him when he first started out. I looked at him as the VP person and Edwards or Hillary as the POTUS. Now, the more I know, the more I think he is just not ready and would not be a good representative of the Democratic Party. The Press would have a field day with him. If he waited and got some experience, then I would be able to vote for him in the future as long as he got better and not worse. We have no real record right now. We have stuff, but not the right stuff to be able to know who he really is. With all these private conversations he has, I am thinking we don't know him at all and he might just have a little private agenda going on.

    Um...I dislike him on principle not because of (5.00 / 1) (#196)
    by derridog on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:06:47 AM EST
    something so trivial as that the media has asked him some challenging questions for a change.

    the enemy of my enemy... (5.00 / 3) (#59)
    by white n az on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:52:43 AM EST
    is my friend. Makes perfectly good sense and it's the kind of twisted logic that makes GWB such an effective president.

    Seriously though, you have no choice but to vote for the Democratic nominee because the alternate is John McCain.

    It's not all about Obama...it never has been.

    I don't particularly like him. I can't stand his stilting speech patterns and I think that if I had to hear him for 4 years as president, I would go mad. I also think that if he were elected, that much of his presidency would be marked with press ridicule and failure.

    And yeah, there's a bunch of clueless Obama supporters who get you PO'd and while I don't think Obama can beat McCain, I just can't sit it out. McCain would be so much worse on so many levels that a McCain vote is not an option.


    Oh, really? (5.00 / 1) (#168)
    by Molly Pitcher on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:43:48 AM EST
    "Seriously though, you have no choice but to vote for the Democratic nominee because the alternate is John McCain."

    Wrong!  Some of us are in states where we can sit it out (in my case, there's not even a downticket) if we have strong convictions.  I think Obmaa lacks credentials and credibility.  No dem will win here, local or state.  Others live in safe blue states and many live in red states.  We have the luxury of voting (or not voting) our convictions.  Maybe I will even get a bumper sticker that says, "Don't blame it on me!"


    I hate McCain too but... (none / 0) (#152)
    by moll on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:21:28 AM EST
    Seriously though, you have no choice but to vote for the Democratic nominee because the alternate is John McCain.

    Seriously - everyone needs to stop with the "you have no choice" talk.

    If they don't already agree with you when you say it, it is a bad thing to say.

    It's good to emphasize why a McCain presidency would be a disaster - but this election has been way too much about people not behaving respectfully toward those whose choices disagree with our own preferences.


    that is really interesting (none / 0) (#94)
    by ruffian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:34:21 AM EST
    I didn't have that reaction.  I guess I did not see those questions as that much of an attack.

    I already am going to vote for him if he is the nominee, and Hillary's whole hearted support for that was very moving to me.  I think that is what really changed your mind (Just kidding!)


    First of all... (5.00 / 2) (#50)
    by white n az on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:38:40 AM EST
    the amount of time spent on the topics of 'bitter gaffe' and Wright was mostly the time Obama spent fumbling his thoughts. The simple fact is that there hasn't been a vote or a debate since those topics hit the media and they were certain to come up and they did.

    Secondly, I didn't think that the questions were all that unfair...it seemed that way because those 2 issues hadn't been put as specific questions to Obama before.

    The question about Ayers was impertinent and Obama, rather than merely dismiss it, took the opportunity to slug Hillary as proxy for Bill's pardons while clearly ignoring his previous proclamations to not continue fighting the battles of the past. No amount of spin covers the fact that Hillary had nothing to do with the question or the pardons.

    As for netroot indignation about mistreatment...if they are only concerned when their candidate gets mistreated, their complaints have little merit. Where were they when Hillary was getting trashed daily on MSNBC? They were out in front of defending MSNBC because their guy was getting the benefit. Sour grapes.

    It may be possible that the main stream media sucks...who knew?

    And Ayers never (none / 0) (#76)
    by slr51 on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:15:03 AM EST
    said anything relative to the twin tower bombings in an interview.

    Clinton made it SEEM that way and feigned outrage, then tried to make her fantasy an issue about Obama's judgment.

    Why the hell she does she do stuff this obvious and this despicable when "she'll do anything to win" and perceptions of her lack of honesty are the very causes of most of her negative poll ratings?


    ...anything? (5.00 / 3) (#177)
    by moll on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:51:36 AM EST
    Seems to me if Obama didn't fight dirty using Republican talking points, you wouldn't be parroting how "she'd do anything to win".  

    If she'd "do anything to win", how come I can think of a whole lot of things she could have done but didn't? Am I smarter than her whole campaign staff combined? How come she didn't do more with all the other goodies that Republicans can't wait to get their hands on? You think after everything the Clintons went through themselves, they didn't learn a thing or two about how swift boating works?

    But even today Clinton refuses to throw over her party - which is why that's what is making headlines: Clinton says Obama could win.

    Obama isn't big enough to do the same. Every time he has a choice, he chooses himself over the party. He's the one who'd do anything to win - he has already quite cheerfully ripped the party and he'll do it some more.

    Everything that has hurt Obama at the polls is straight from Obama, not from Clinton's dirty tricks. It's just not obvious because Obama doesn't know how to take responsibility for anything. Blame is all he is.  

    I will not forgive him for his attempts to deliberately rewrite history to smear the Clinton's legacy. You don't do that to your own party. It is Obama hurting the interests of Democratic voters for his own selfish purposes.

    I still see Bill Clinton primarily as the President who won re-election based on his economic successes and who is still beloved for improving the real quality of life for working Americans.

    Every time I hear someone talk about how Hillary "will do anything to win", I find myself resenting the way Obama is always projecting. Everything he ever accuses anyone else of - bitter, clinging to religion for the wrong reasons, I could go on - that's all him projecting what he himself is guilty of.


    you seem to be really hung up on this Ayers thing (none / 0) (#143)
    by white n az on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:15:44 AM EST
    but I have to tell you that you are missing her point...

    On 9/11/2001, the New York Times had a story on Ayers wherein he was quoted as being sorry that he hadn't done more bombing/damage in the 70's

    It may be easy for you to dismiss, but the Senator from New York can't just dismiss that because of something else that happened on that same day.

    The consequence/irony of that article that day is just too much to dismiss regardless of how you try.

    That said, I don't have a problem with Ayers myself but I am from that period and I am somewhat in agreement with him but the problem is always the innocent people who suffered immensely.

    And again, it's folly to suggest that she would say/do anything to get elected and not recognize that in his defense, Obama pointed out the 2 people pardoned by BILL Clinton, which she had nothing to do with. This clearly indicates that there is equivalence and he is willing to do/say anything to get elected himself.


    made it SEEM that way (none / 0) (#153)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:21:56 AM EST
    I noticed that too but thought it was sort of brilliant.  Obama either had to let it go or go into explaining that "no, he was talking about the explosions HE was responsible for".
    unfortunately he wisely did not take the bait.

    In response to #76 (none / 0) (#195)
    by kenoshaMarge on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:06:17 AM EST
    calling Hillary despicable and insisting she'll do anything to win is despicable. Can you not, just once, make a point without insulting Senator Clinton?

    "feigned outrage"?
    "perceptions of her honesty"?

    Why not throw in the "kitchen sink" of Hillary insults and be done with it.

    I am so tired of this constant barrage of insults to MY canidate posturing as discourse I could scream.


    The one good thing (5.00 / 7) (#51)
    by joanneleon on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:39:02 AM EST
    about the time spent on the more "tabloid" issues was that each candidate got the chance to really explain himself/herself on these issues that have been floating around in the media for days, weeks and months now.  Their answers weren't reduced to sound bites or cherry picked quotes.  They had a fair chance to explain themselves on their own terms.  Obama was given all the time he wanted to explain himself.  In fact, he took much more time during that segment than Hillary did.

    My hope is that this will put some of these issues to bed for now, and that we can move on to some more substantive issues, or at least spend some more time on the issues.  

    I find it to be very hypocritical for any media type to rail and thrash about saying that too much time was spent on issues of character, personality, identity, etc.  They are the very culprits who choose to spend most of their time reporting on such issues!  Have we not been asking for more issues based reporting on this campaign?  Yes.  Instead, the media grabs onto every gaffe and rumor, the very minute it happens, and then spends days and weeks obsessing over the most trivial matters.  And, most of the time, the bias doesn't lean toward Hillary.  Now, when Obama is asked some tough questions, all of a sudden, it's embarrassing?  

    Here I am, down in that rabbit hole again.  I simply can't see how this debate was that much different than the way the media has been covering this campaign all along.  Well, there was one difference.  Obama had to answer some tough questions.  Oh my.  The sky is falling.

    I've never seen such hypocrisy in my life from democrats.  

    Last Night Was A Preview Of Coming (5.00 / 2) (#56)
    by MO Blue on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:47:26 AM EST
    attractions and just a small sample of what Obama will be hit with during the GE. A hit piece in the Canada Free Press gives a scary overlook of the types of attacks the Republicans will be launching against Obama.

    The True Democrat (5.00 / 8) (#57)
    by glennmcgahee on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:48:15 AM EST
    Its obvious that Hillary Clinton is the true and faithful Democrat in this race. I'd like to see all the times that Obama has claimed that his supporters would not vote for her and even Michelle Obama has stated that she might not support Hillary Clinton if she became the nominee. As Barack stands there praising George Sr. and Reagan and tears down Bill Clinton and talks about being friends with Tom Coburn. Is he a Democrat? He should be running as a third party candidate.I can't really see how he was treated badly, it could've been so much worse. Only a person who has researched would know who Ayers is and for many, the name went over their heads, but now perhaps, some will pay more attention and wonder who they are talking about. It goes against everything he said about supporting Israel. I don't think he answered those questions to my satisfaction. And don't get me started on his reaching out to the churches. I remember well the "Gospel Tour" at the beginning of his campaign. Thats when he paraded aroung to mostly black churches with Donnie McClirkin in tow talking about the evils of homosexuality. He's gotten a free pass on that. Funny how the blogger boyz are almost all gay and overlook that. Yes, he interviewed in the Advocate, but dissed the Philadelphia Gay News, thats because the Advocate is owned by the Chicago Tribune, its become nothing but Hollywood hype. Nothing too controversial in there anymore when it used to lead the Gay movement. Most gays don't bother with it anymore.

    Cockfighters use metal spurs (5.00 / 1) (#74)
    by Fabian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:11:04 AM EST
    to augment a rooster's own spurs.  Wicked things.

    I didn't like the analogy myself.  

    i took myiq's comment (none / 0) (#106)
    by magisterludi on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:48:35 AM EST
    another way, but that's just me.

    Qualifications/policies vs Excitement/electricity (5.00 / 2) (#81)
    by ding7777 on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:19:13 AM EST
    Yesterday, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette endorsed Obama because he " has brought an excitement and an electricity to American politics "

    Now, look at its endorsement from 2000:

    Which candidate is better prepared to lead the world's only remaining superpower? And which candidate offers a vision of governing that better promotes prosperity, a strong role for America in the world and continued progress toward the goal of equal rights for all Americans? Whether the yardstick is qualifications or policies, the superior candidate is Vice President Al Gore.

    When did HOPE, CHANGE and UNITY trump being prepared to lead, promoting prosperity, and ensuring equal rights?

    After we saw him all these months (5.00 / 1) (#131)
    by Stellaaa on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:05:21 AM EST
    how can change, hope or unity be his core qualifications, are the deluded.  

    Do did Dean (5.00 / 1) (#151)
    by BarnBabe on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:21:05 AM EST
    I loved Dean but now wonder if I got that right. I was going on the hope and change and taking back America and ending the war in Iraq.If the DNC can not do what is right, how would Dean have been as the POTUS.

    Unfair or not (5.00 / 7) (#89)
    by davnee on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:29:50 AM EST
    Obama was weak and unprepared when the worm turned against him.  That in and of itself tells me a great deal.  The most inexcusable weakness was on Wright and Bittergate.  This is the first debate since both of those giant stories, and those questions were to be expected.  That he was weak on those answers is all his fault.  Ayers may have been less expected, but only because of massive media bias.  

    At the end of the day, Obama has run a campaign that has emphasized words and judgment as superior to record and experience.  He, more than any other candidate, must answer these company you keep, views you hold about other people questions, because they speak to the heart of his personal judgment and the authenticity of his hope and unity politics.  

    I've noticed that Obama doesn't handle being (5.00 / 4) (#92)
    by gish720 on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:31:01 AM EST
    under pressure very well...he tends to bumble and start his verbal dithering...ah ah ahs and the use of the prolonged annnnndddd...it just doesn't make him look very well prepared and instead of sounding like a leader he sounds like Elsie Dinsmore on her last legs.  This is what I noticed about him a long time ago.  After his 2004 speech at the dem convention I was very excited about him, but when I saw him in less formal surroundings with no script my thoughts were he needs more seasoning, more time to mature on the national stage. I still believe that.  I don't dislike him and hope he does mature and eventually become the politician we all hope for.  I just don't want him to become president  while he's still untried and untested.  I really believe that could end up doing damage to the democratic party.

    how wonderful it is (5.00 / 2) (#97)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:39:01 AM EST
    reading the impotent rage from the Obama blogs this morning.
    ahhhhhhhhh.  like a cool breeze.

    I'm sorry, don't mean to be snarky, (none / 0) (#110)
    by vicndabx on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:49:58 AM EST
    but I came here because of a "similarity of mind" shall we say, and yes, that breeze is feelin' pretty good.....

    What's good for the goose.... (5.00 / 4) (#99)
    by Sunshine on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:40:29 AM EST
    Now, they want to say it's unfair, why was it OK for Hillary to receive this kind of treatment, mainly dealt out by MSNBC and not for Obama to receive it from ABC?   But, still does 2 unfairs make a fair?  If they wanted everything to be fair, they should have started a long time ago....

    The Orange ones (5.00 / 1) (#104)
    by Democratic Cat on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:46:58 AM EST
    say not only was last night's debate unfair, it's Hillary's fault. "She could have stopped it" and didn't. So apparently, her mind control powers work not just on Sen. Obama but on the media also.

    There is nothing the OFB will not blame on Sen. Clinton.


    What a bunch of ...... (5.00 / 2) (#128)
    by Stellaaa on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:03:57 AM EST
    So, she is responsible for taking care of him?  How does that work?  Again, the mother has to take care, that is a bunch of hockey pucks if you ask me.  She has no obligation, he has to take care of himself.

    don't you hate it when women refuse to cooperate? (none / 0) (#190)
    by moll on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:01:52 AM EST
    I think it's a woman's job to make the man big.

    At least, that's what my momma always said.


    Disgusting (none / 0) (#198)
    by Stellaaa on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:09:13 AM EST
    also (5.00 / 2) (#103)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:46:00 AM EST
    a lot has been said, some even here, about the "unfair" questions.  what a travesty the debate was.  fine.  however,
    these are all things that WILL be coming up in the general election. it may weigh heavily on the delicate sensibilities of Obama supporters but they WILL come up.
    his complete inability to give a coherent answer shows what will happen to him as the nominee.

    No excuse for being unprepared. (none / 0) (#124)
    by Fabian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:02:15 AM EST
    What was the latest controversy?   BitterCling
    What is likely to dog him into the GE?  Wright

    It's up to Obama to address those issues.  Not just when he controls the debate, but at any time, anywhere.  And of course, especially in a nationally televised debate.

    GWB's inability to grasp any number of issues is painfully fresh in my mind.  It's not a good idea to remind me of GWB.


    Obama thinks things are behind him (none / 0) (#139)
    by ruffian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:10:38 AM EST
    when he says he has put them behind him. That's not how it works.

    He thinks he can single-handedly change the way the media game is played with these kinds of issues.  He can't, at least not unless he does get elected. Which got a lot less likely after last night.  

    The undecideds he did not drive to Clinton, he drove toward McCain.


    The media is broken of course (5.00 / 2) (#112)
    by ruffian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:50:55 AM EST
    But only in part in the way the Obamabots say. For one thing, anyone who knows the Hillary-Stephanopolous relationship knows there is no love lost there.  The accusation that he favors her is just laughable.  

    There was a real substantive debate in the last 50 minutes last night, where real differences were brought out on taxes, social security, and other things.  But I am not hearing one word about that in the news reports of it today.  All I am hearing about is that Hillary said Obama 'can' win.  (Not that he 'will', I noted.)

    It is a vicious circle. They ask stupid and 'gotcha' questions to get some sensationalist response, report endlessly on that response, and then use that "big story" they ginned up as an excuse to do the same thing the next time.  And the candidates let them get away with it.  

    The candidates are the only ones who can make it stop.  They have to find a way to do that.  I don't want them to stop having debates, because I do think there is real substance there. But I would like to see them just flat out refuse to answer certain questions. there would be NO negative reaction to that from the voters.

    Life story vs. Plans (5.00 / 2) (#123)
    by Stellaaa on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:01:58 AM EST
    We have two campaigns.  One, Hillary, focused on plans and solutions.  Obama's campaign, by the words of his own strategist, focused on the story, the Obama life.  So, as far as I am concerned his campaign constructed the quality of the debate, his story.  It has to be discussed, everything in his life should be on the table.  IF you watched that Charlie Rose interview he talked about how voters are not interested in ten point policy plans, great, so, lets talk about your connections, your friends.  

    Good thing they did not really embarrass him by talking about his alleged experience in FP from being a kid in Indonesia.  

    It's Fair (5.00 / 1) (#127)
    by Sunshine on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:03:16 AM EST
    Obama sure seems to have run with a shady crowd to get to the top, and now is having trouble shaking them...  It's fair to queston him about them and there is more than was mentioned last night....

    LWV (5.00 / 2) (#140)
    by superjude on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:10:40 AM EST
    The questions and demeanor of the questioners displays how weak our MSM has become. I really feel that we would be much better served if we returned to the format where the League of Women Voters hosted the debates. They would be more serious and substantive and would also be more reflective of the concerns of the community in which they were held.

    Most Disappointing (5.00 / 2) (#148)
    by flashman on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:19:06 AM EST
    I was watching for Obamam to explain his connection to Bob Ayers.  He had the opportunity, but failed.  First, he LIED when he said that Ayers was just someone who "lived down the street."  Then, when given a second chance, he decided to go on the attack instead.  It was a poor-ass showing for Mr. Obama.  The reason I am looking for an explaination is because I'll have to defend him at the water cooler this fall, if he wins the nomination.  He's giving me nothing to work with.

    There's the rub. (none / 0) (#162)
    by Fabian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:34:55 AM EST
    I'll punch the ballot, but I'm not going to talk him up.  

    Believe Me (none / 0) (#173)
    by flashman on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:46:29 AM EST
    If not for the spectar of expanding the war in the Middle East, I would not support the other party over Mr. O.  The war hawks in Washington must be shown the door, for they have caused more misery here and abroad than anyone else.  Personally, I like McCain.  He was my senator when I lived in Arizona.  But his policies will lead us into the abyss.  I have to fight him and the thugs who support him,even though it means I might support a candidate who frightens me almost as much.  

    BO's line about 40 years ago, (none / 0) (#213)
    by 1jpb on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:37:15 AM EST
    and he was 8, was a good line.  Dwelling on this trite stuff is useless, that's the why the Rs trick Ds into taking this stuff seriously.  

    But you can go into more details if you want.  This is a small community, BO has crossed paths (on a board and at a home meeting more than 10 years ago) with this guy, so what?  How Rs are able to trick Ds into being navel gazing weaklings is astonishing.  

    Do you think that the Rs won't accuse HRC of gaining politically from the release of 16 FALN terrorists, against the advice of the Attorney's Office, FBI, police, and others?  How does that compare to BO's occasional, but not frequent, crossing paths with Ayers?

    Don't forget HRC's work to help (note taking in court) with the legal defense of Black Panthers accused of torture and murder?  From the wingnut perspective, how does that compare to crossing paths with Ayres?

    Buck up!


    Wow, you just DON'T GET IT! (5.00 / 0) (#215)
    by MarkL on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:51:10 AM EST
    40 years later, a murderer is still a murderer.
    Ayers has not changed---he expresses no remorse at all for his crimes. Obama should no more go to his home than he should visit Charles Manson.

    Regardless of which candidate you are for, (5.00 / 2) (#163)
    by deleg8 on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:34:59 AM EST
    what has become clear from these network run debates is that the moderating of them should be returned back to the League of Women Voters.

    Hillary said the remarks were published (5.00 / 2) (#172)
    by ChrisO on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:46:01 AM EST
    on 9/11, which is totally accurate. And yes, the Senator representing NYC does get to talk about her reaction to the attacks. Would you be happier if they had hit Chicago as well, so it would be "fairer"?

    From Paul Krugman's blog: (5.00 / 1) (#193)
    by gish720 on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:05:17 AM EST
    Update: Did people feel that the Midwest was booming during the 1990s? Yes. Here's a link to a 1997 paper from Economic Perspectives titled Reversal Of Fortune: Understanding the Midwest Recovery. And no, I'm not trying to boost Hillary here -- even from his own point of view, it's just crazy for the likely Democratic nominee to denigrate the economic record of the only Democratic president most Americans remember.

    What turned me off to Obama (5.00 / 1) (#218)
    by nellre on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 11:20:08 AM EST
    I was on the fence. I thought we were lucky to have two wonderful candidates to choose from.
    It may not be fair but it is the truth... the first reason I turned to HRC and away from Obama was because of his followers. DailyKos, TPM etc.
    The frenzied and irrational worship was scary.

    The second thing was Obama's preacher like manner. It was great for MLK, but MLK was a preacher. Obama's asking the lead a secular government, not a prayer meeting.

    The third thing was HRC's grasp of the issues and her detailed solutions.

    Yup, wrong order, but there it is.

    I think the Democratic party is in dire straits. (4.33 / 6) (#24)
    by phillhrrll on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:01:03 AM EST
    and democrats are too caught up fighting for their candidate to notice the coming disaster.

    Barrack Obama hasn't a hope of prevailing in November and everyone besides his supporters, can see he isn't prepared for the job.

    Even though the polls somewhat said the party would follow the decision of the SD's, I don't see his base possessing the maturity to accept him losing the nomination thru SD action.

    The divisiveness of the left is morphing into serious  animosity betwixt the two camps, which isn't going to resolve itself without lasting rancor.

    I think the SD's will have to swing the nomination to Clinton( their purpose is to prevent an electoral debacle) and Obama's supporters are going to go bugs***, costing Clinton any shot at winning in Nov. I just wonder how far off the rails they'll go, the recreate 68 nonsense isn't going to play at all here in Ohio.

    If the SD's fail in their duty to put the most electable candidate on the ballot, due to cowardice or some will of the people bs, they'll prove Democrats are incapable of leadership nationally.

    As an independent I don't have anything invested in a candidate and have a reasoned outlook. Hillary appears Presidential, but if Obamas the candidate, no right of center decisions will come from the Supreme Court for 30 years.

    That was what the debate left me thinking, Sorry (5.00 / 3) (#26)
    by phillhrrll on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 06:12:12 AM EST
    Sorry to seem OT, I received a call and posted without stating that.  Hillary really looked good and my doubts about Obama have turned into conviction. He lacks substance and is disconnected from everyday American. Presidential isn't a word I'd use to describe him.

    seems pretty hopeless all right (5.00 / 2) (#108)
    by moll on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:49:23 AM EST
    The only way I can see the Democrats winning is if someone persuades Obama that his future political career rests entirely on not only dropping out, but doing so in a way that persuades his people to vote for Hillary.

    The odds of that happening seem beyond hoping for. But how could Obama ever win the GE now? And how could Hillary win, after all the hate that has been unleashed?

    Too many of Obama's supporters don't even seem to realize there is a problem.  


    What's truly stunning (5.00 / 2) (#117)
    by phillhrrll on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:56:46 AM EST
    is she was the anointed one 6 mos ago, the way she was discarded and dismissed by a lot of dems is telling. Loyalty isn't their best trait.

    I believe that if Hillary actually won, (5.00 / 1) (#187)
    by derridog on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:59:21 AM EST
    Obama would stiff her and take his marbles and go home, thus splitting the party.  I dont' see him playing the statesman. He's not Al Gore.

    I agree with this completely (none / 0) (#202)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:10:58 AM EST
    He has already said as much.. (none / 0) (#214)
    by FlaDemFem on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:43:14 AM EST
    He said that if he didn't win this time, he would not run again. Something about not being the same people four years from now, and losing touch with "ordinary people". I take it those are the same ordinary people who are also "bitter and clinging". So, if Obama loses the nomination, he will take his marbles and go home. Probably whining the whole way about how unfair people are to him. This is a tone that is not needed in our political process. We need grown-ups, not whining children who are going to go home as soon as they don't do well in the game. And after his sorry performances as a candidate, and his lack of work as a Senator, it will surprise me if Illinois sends him back to the Senate.

    the democrats are in trouble (5.00 / 1) (#174)
    by kimsaw on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:48:10 AM EST
    because the only one who seems to know what being a democrat means is Clinton. Obama is aiming to change the party, but I don't think there is a clear definition of what that means. I said it yesterday he is a walking bundle of contradictions.

    I don't remember hardly anything thing he said of substance because of his ramblings. Without a teleprompter he can seem to get his points out as effectively. It's hard to believe the guy was a lawyer- a constitutional one at that. Did he ever argue before a court I'd like to see him in action. I can't imagine it like I can with Clinton, I'd want her on my team. She really is scary smart but speaks the language of average Americans, and leaves the flowery stuff for someone else.


    Hillary is lacking (none / 0) (#75)
    by Foreign Observer on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:12:49 AM EST
    You are whistling in the wind when you say Obama "does not have a hope of prevailing in November". It seems that all the polls are counter to that view. Hillary will be a disaster in November.

    Having tried to highlight her "experience", she opened herself up to examination on that front and failed miserably. Unlike so much of the "tit for tat" nonsense which has been going on, examination of her Bosnian claims was necessary. Not only was her oft-repeated claim of entering a sniper zone seem to be untrue, but her husband excused it by saying she was over sixty, that she made the claim once (she did so on a number of occasions) and late at night (each time was during the day) and, therefore, should be forgiven for being forgetful. Would one really forget knowingly taking one's 16  year old daughter into sniper fire (some advertisement for family values!)? Hmmm - do we want her answering the call at 3:00am.


    Let me know when you see (5.00 / 1) (#100)
    by Josey on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:40:58 AM EST
    the video clips of Obama speeches airing on teevee where he lies about the Kennedys bringing his father to America.
    Hillary embellished her Tuzla visit, but at least there was some truth to it since prior to her landing there had been reports of snipers in the hills.
    But Obama's tale about the Kennedys and his father was a big fat lie.

    Hillary has grudgingly (5.00 / 3) (#105)
    by phillhrrll on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:47:44 AM EST
    earned my respect. She pretty much admitted to lying last night and apologized, I'm an independent and Obama isn't presidential material and probably shouldn't hold a senate seat. Hillary is a known quantity whereas the more I know Obama, I realize there isn't much to know, he lacks substance.

    I began this as an Obama supporter (5.00 / 1) (#109)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:49:34 AM EST
    and have come to exactly the same conclusions.

    Go look at some information (4.20 / 5) (#78)
    by Marvin42 on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:17:13 AM EST
    Obama doesn't have a chance of electoral victory. He loses critical major states and this is before things like last nights debate performance. And trying to smear Sen Clinton doesn't change that or the fact that she can carry PA and OH against McCain and has a shot at FL.

    short sight (5.00 / 1) (#207)
    by moll on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:21:05 AM EST
    On ABC they quoted a Republican strategist as saying they should buy a 90 minute infomercial and play the debate.

    It's a big problem for Obama. I think too many Obama supporters are too stuck in the nomination, and not looking ahead to what he'd face against McCain.

    Obama and his supporters have relied too much on how Obama looks in comparison to how Hillary looks.(Or how they imagine Hillary looks. Cuz everyone sees things the way they do, right?)

    If Obama didn't have "but I hate Hillary Clinton" to prop up his empty suit, we'd all recognize how he's going to look the minute Clinton is gone. He's in trouble.

    His tactics won't work against McCain, and he hasn't got anything else - just some breezy words that now look like a bad joke (unity? politics as usual? words have meaning?). His campaign is way too driven by blame and comparison.


    Look at information? (1.00 / 1) (#154)
    by Foreign Observer on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:25:22 AM EST
    I can assure you that I've looked at as much information as anyone else. Do you really think that NY Democrat voters who are currently Clinton supporters would all go and vote for McCain if Obama was the candidate?

    And as for her "major" victory in Texas, 51% to 47% is hardly major.

    Come back to me after PA, IN and NC primaries, when Obama will still be ahead in delegates and popular votes (and, the way things are going now, probably in super delegates as well).

    And, as for the "smearing", it seems that Clinton smeared herself on the Bosnia incident and then Bill compounded it. And, if there had been reports of sniper fire, why did she take her 16 year old daughter with her? Seems to have shown a remarkable lack of judgement.

    Oh, and as for last night's debate, I just saw a poll with over 61,000 responses which showed Obama won with 55% against Clinton's 28%.

    You are whistling in the wind and we cannot hear you!


    No (5.00 / 1) (#165)
    by cmugirl on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:36:52 AM EST
    They may not "all go and vote for McCain if Obama was the candidate" - but many may just not vote for the top of the ticket.

    At least, that's what recent polling shows.


    one of those (3.00 / 2) (#158)
    by kmblue on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:29:28 AM EST
    Kos-bombed polls, no doubt. ;)

    And you are being (3.00 / 2) (#182)
    by kenoshaMarge on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:55:25 AM EST
    repetitive and we don't want to hear you!

    NYers who are supporting Clinton (1.00 / 1) (#178)
    by kimsaw on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:52:50 AM EST
    I'm afraid NY may become a toss up if Clinton is not the nominee... you neglect to compare Clinton and McCains demographics, Obama may take a good part of the NYC, but upstate will not be swayed by his love me cause I'm so great mantra. I know for example he won't be getting my vote, I'm be writing in Clinton no matter what.

    I have many friends in NY. One, who is Jewish, (none / 0) (#180)
    by derridog on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:54:29 AM EST
    says that, he has talked to many of his friends, and that  there is no way that NY Jews will vote for Obama.  Now, this is anecdotal and I've never seen any polling on this subject, but it corresponds with the polls in Florida, which has a large Jewish population.

    Many people do not feel that uncomfortable with McCain. In spite of what you and I might think about him, he still has a reputation of being a straight shooter and people remember his earlier "independent" stances and think that he will recover from drinking Bush koolaid if he actually takes office.   It's going to be really hard to counter that perception with a candidate as tainted as Obama. He hasn't even begun to get hit with things that are out there for the taking -like the Rezko trial and the problems with Nadhmi Auchi being the money man for his house deal.  Do you think the Republicans aren't going to trot that out as soon as he gets nominated? Between that and all his other unfortunate associations that keep cropping up to haunt him, like William Ayers, a ten year old  could swiftboat him.


    Okay. Link to the poll. Was this online? (none / 0) (#183)
    by derridog on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:55:41 AM EST
    The Independents and Republicans (none / 0) (#203)
    by ding7777 on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:15:38 AM EST
    voted for Obama in the open primaries and they will desert him during the GE.

    Whether they voted for him as a scam ("Be an Obama Dem for a day") or  because they hear another Reagan speaking or because they believe he is "moderate" - the Republicans will paint him very differently and it will stick.

    Are you more afraid of McCain or the guy who refused to count FL and MI votes?


    Pretty boring debate (none / 0) (#49)
    by flyerhawk on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:37:32 AM EST
    Pretty boring debate.

    Obama lost points on his cling to guns and religion response. Given the fact that he knew it was coming he should have had a solid response. Instead his response was strained. Hillary did pretty well with her follow-up to that.

    After that, however, things went downhill for Hillary. Her response to sniper-gate was pretty disjointed. If you are going to give a mea culpa you can't throw out excuses.

    But where she really dropped the ball was when she kept trying to harp on the various gaffes that Obama has made. It was fine for her to keep talking about bittergate. But she started looking desperate when she focused on Wright. And she looked downright silly when she tried to point out how bad Obama was because of Ayers. Probably the highlight of the evening was when Obama brought up the fact that Bill Clinton pardoned 2 Weather Underground people.

    Hillary also seemed really snippy. Random cackle after Obama made a rather silly distinction about how he hasn't mentioned Tuzla but of course his campaign has. The cackle is not the way to react to that. And then she gives a snotty response to Charlie Gibson mentions that Obama had gotten a bit more of the time and that they would correct it.

    The last 45 minutes were basically both candidates promising candy and blow jobs for the American people. There was nothing that they both couldn't pander over.

    In the end it was Obama with a TKO. Debates only matter if some big gaffe or killer one liner is used.  That didn't happen.

    I'm not sure why people think this debate was any worse or better than the other ones.  Didn't seem much different than past debates.  

    Ayers is a BIG deal. (5.00 / 3) (#60)
    by MarkL on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:53:29 AM EST
    Sorry, but Obama went to this man's home.
    If you are a politician with ambitions of being President, what does it say if you make a social visit to someone like Ayers? The key point about Ayers is that not only is he a terrorist and murderer---he also shows no remorse at all for his actions.
    No one made him serve on the board with Ayers, and certainly no one forced him to go to Ayers' house.
    Guilt by association can be overdone, but THIS is a perfect time to use it.

    WTF? (none / 0) (#66)
    by flyerhawk on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:00:34 AM EST
    So he served on a board with the guy?  This is just silly. So he should have resigned from the board because politically someone would someday attempt to equate 2 of them?  

    Ayers is absolutely not a big deal.  Obama was 8 years old when he did the crap he did.  The US government doesn't seem to have a problem with him anymore.  The University of Chicago hired him.

    But who knows?  Maybe Ayers will be the magic bullet that you Hillary supporters have so desperately been looking for.


    Judgment is a big deal (5.00 / 3) (#77)
    by Marvin42 on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:15:14 AM EST
    You may not want to see this, but he can contribute to a pattern of bad judgments for a politician that the republicans WILL ABSOLUTELY use against him if he is the nominee. You can keep saying its not a big deal, but you like up Wright, Rezko and Ayers and a lot of people will see a pattern.

    Perception is reality, don't forget that. You like it when the MSM is creating the perception your candidate is once in a lifetime, just be prepared for the perception that your candidate keeps hanging around people with questionable patriotism.


    Especially (5.00 / 3) (#91)
    by cmugirl on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:30:52 AM EST
    when you base your campaign on the fact that you have superior judgment.

    Sure (none / 0) (#86)
    by flyerhawk on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:25:58 AM EST
    I can see a narrative being built.  That doesn't mean it has any merit other than as a political cudgel.

    that is the only merit it needs (5.00 / 1) (#121)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:00:51 AM EST
    That is the point many here have been (none / 0) (#102)
    by vicndabx on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:41:36 AM EST
    trying to make.  Cudgels get used in politics today.  Maybe at some point in the future they won't be, but we have to be in power long enough first to move the media (and people for that matter) in that direction first.  I like Obama (and really wish he would've waited a bit before running,) but now is not the time for someone who is NOT a Washington insider IMO.

    That seems to be (none / 0) (#147)
    by flyerhawk on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:19:03 AM EST
    Hillary's campaign strategy at this point, Not a terribly compelling argument.  It assumes that somehow Hillary will be immune to such attacks and that just doesn't seem realistic.

    No not immune (none / 0) (#157)
    by Lil on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:29:03 AM EST
    Just capable of handling the attacks and still run a country.

    Problem is he tries to say (none / 0) (#96)
    by ruffian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:38:40 AM EST
    he hardly knew him, and that is just false. He did it last night, and that is what I at first thought Hillary was calling him out on.  I wish she had just stopped there.

    So are you saying that Ayers' crime is (none / 0) (#144)
    by MarkL on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:16:41 AM EST
    not a big deal because Obama was 8 when it occurred?
    So would it be ok if Obama wrote letters to Charles Manson?! LOL
    Not so far off, of course... Huckabee wrote friendly letters to Wayne Dumond.

    Aha, (none / 0) (#199)
    by kenoshaMarge on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:09:32 AM EST
    the "desperate" insult rears it's ugly head again.

    Actually, I didn't think it was boring at all... (5.00 / 2) (#65)
    by white n az on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 07:59:59 AM EST
    and what's wrong with candidates promising candy and blow jobs anyway? Isn't that the point of their candidacy? Granted people used to phrase it in more congenial terms...i.e. a chicken in every pot.

    Yours and my analysis doesn't really matter unless we have a vote coming up but mine was on Super Tuesday.

    If you thought that the highlight of the evening was Obama smearing Hillary for pardons that she had absolutely nothing to do with then you cannot see past your own partisanship to recognize that that comment made him small, embittered and so far removed from the 'politics of hope' that there is little reason to believe he can ever get back to that meme in the general election.

    My own personal analysis was that Obama came off poorly last night but the voters get the last word, not you or I.


    Heh (none / 0) (#82)
    by flyerhawk on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:21:07 AM EST
    The blowjobs and candy comment wasn't intended for this site.  I cut and pasted a comment I made on another site and missed the edit on that terminology.  I don't have a problem with pander politics in this context but they don't really serve any purpose.

    I thought that Obama's comment about the pardons was the highlight simply because it was the strongest zinger of the night. Those types of comments have no merit overall but the debate wasn't about merit.  It was gaff-a-palooza where the Chuck and George show made both candidates defend the various gaffes of the past month.

    In the end this debate probably didn't change anyone's mind.  Hillary is going to win PA by 7-10 points.  Obama will win NC.  Indiana will be a pick 'em.  Hillary still will be 150 delegates down in June and that will be that.


    You cut and pasted your comment? (none / 0) (#189)
    by gyrfalcon on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:01:35 AM EST
    Good grief.  Why don't you just put your different arguments on Word macros and use those?  At least have the honesty to say in a comment that it's the same one you've left other places around the Net.

    I don't think the pardon (none / 0) (#219)
    by americanincanada on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 11:43:28 AM EST
    thing was a zinger at all. to me it made him look petty and like he wants to have it both ways.

    How you ask?

    He can't give her no credit for the good things she did during Bill's administration, saying she was just first lady, and then damn her with perceived bad things Bill did.

    If she had influence over his pardons then she had influence over SCHIP and the economy.


    Come on flyerhawk (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by standingup on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:04:19 AM EST
    Sorry the debate did not go well for Obama but do you really need to stoop to the "cackle?"  

    It's just flyerhawk being "objective" (5.00 / 2) (#71)
    by Fabian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:07:32 AM EST
    Personally, I think her laugh is neither attractive or unattractive, but rather "characteristic".

    BTW - does Obama laugh?


    Heh (none / 0) (#85)
    by flyerhawk on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:24:56 AM EST
    If you think I am bothered by the debate at all, you are sorely mistaken.  I realize that here at TL Hillary won big last night.  But here at TL, Hillary is batting 1.000 in the debates.  She always wins big, Obama always looks bad.  

    The cackle comment fits that moment.  She has done this repeatedly in the past.  Outbursts of laughter that are out of place.  

    Maybe you thought that randomly laughing while the other person is speaking is a good thing but I suspect you are in the distinct minority.


    Then call it (5.00 / 5) (#95)
    by standingup on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:35:12 AM EST
    laughter and drop the cackle reference.  

    It was not random laughter (5.00 / 1) (#98)
    by ruffian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:39:42 AM EST
    I'd have to watch it again to remember what she was laughing at, but I was laughing too.

    she laughed at him (5.00 / 3) (#116)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:56:45 AM EST
    saying he never mentioned Bosnia.
    it was laughable.

    and also when (5.00 / 1) (#118)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:58:36 AM EST
    they played the clip of McCain saying "he has the audacity to raise your taxes and hope you wont notice".
    which is a pretty good line.  I laughed.

    that's right! (5.00 / 3) (#122)
    by ruffian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:01:12 AM EST
    Right after he did mention it.  How could you not laugh? People in the audience laughed too, as I recall.

    Sure (none / 0) (#186)
    by flyerhawk on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:59:01 AM EST
    It was a silly thing for Obama to say.  

    But blurting out laughter in response is hardly the appropriate response.  If she wants to take a jab at him for that she should have said something.  


    C'mon (none / 0) (#201)
    by Stellaaa on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:10:29 AM EST
    You are likeable enough Hillary?  

    You're really grasping today. (none / 0) (#206)
    by MarkL on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:17:58 AM EST
    Must not be just TL (none / 0) (#169)
    by BarnBabe on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:44:04 AM EST
    If you are cutting and pasting your comments, then you must be a very busy person at all the pro-Hillary blogs. Maybe Hillary is batting 1000 because she beats him in debates. He beats her maybe in delivering speeches, although I have seen her speeches and she is very very good also. John Kerry could speak well and was a good debater. GW was a heh heh kinda of lean on your podium guy. Who won and who should have won? Most of the country, over 70%, have buyers remorse that they choose the wrong person.

    Actually no (none / 0) (#179)
    by flyerhawk on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:53:00 AM EST
    I posted that comment on another that is definitely not pro-hillary.  Most of the other pro-hillary blogs are too over the top to deal with.

    Maybe you're right.  But it doesn't seem to be reflected in the polls or by most objective standards.


    And that is the sad part, isn't it? (none / 0) (#205)
    by BarnBabe on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:16:12 AM EST
    Some people just choose to vote for someone for the wrong reason. I remember Leslie Stahl saying she learned a new word in 2004. Folksy. GW was doing Folksy. GW was the guy you wanted to have a beer with. Forget about what GW had done in the National Guard and who got him in there. GW didn't speak to issues. GW had a past but let's just chalk that up to being young. GW had a life of people helping him get into businesses and bailing him out. GW did not have a real message or plan but he had charisma. Aw, and people voted for charisma.

    I always said in 2004, I can have a beer with a bunch of people who I would never want as my POTUS. I wasn't voting for a BBQ chef, I was voting for intelligence. You saw how that worked out.


    Did we watch (none / 0) (#161)
    by Molly Pitcher on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:34:03 AM EST
    the same debate?  I have the impression that Hillary spoke to those items that you excoriate her for only after Obama had his say (in answer to questions asked by the moderator).

    From a tactical point of view (none / 0) (#181)
    by flyerhawk on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:54:36 AM EST
    I think she does herself no favors by talking about them.    It furthers the narrative that she is too negative, won't change anyone's mind, and wastes her speaking time on stuff unrelated to her.

    I wish Hillary hadn't pursued (none / 0) (#217)
    by ChrisO on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 11:15:47 AM EST
    the Ayers thing. Not because it's wrong, but because it plays into the hands of the handwringers who complain about her negativity. And if she is going to use it, being on the board of a foundation with Ayers is hardly damning. I read a Boston Globe article recently (I'm still lookiong for the link) about Obama's background in Chicago, which said that Ayers and Dohrn hosted one of his first fundraisers for his state Senate run. This seems to me a little more relevant.

    Sadly, as usual, the MSM (none / 0) (#72)
    by kenosharick on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:08:55 AM EST
    is covering up and spinning like mad for Obama. I read the Atl.-Journal/Const. this morning and they go on and on about how the whole debate  revolved around how Hillary thought he could win. NO MENTION of Ayers, no rev. wright, small bit about "bittergate" at end of article. They must have watched a different debate than I did.

    Well her one last Hail Mary hope (none / 0) (#83)
    by slr51 on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:24:12 AM EST
    is convincing the SD's that he can't win and she's running desperately on that one theme. So, yeah it is a big deal that she was finally forced to answer the question on the record. Though she certainly did try very hard to wiggle out of it until it was put to her point blank and any "wiggle" answer would have been too obvious.

    Going back on the stump with speeches about Obama's lack of electability just got much more difficult for Clinton, though I'm sure the whisper campaign with the SD's will go on uninterrupted.


    Actually i don't think (5.00 / 1) (#125)
    by magisterludi on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:02:20 AM EST
    Obama helped himself much in the electability department last night, so Hillary's work just got a little easier.

    Defending Hillary (none / 0) (#93)
    by STLDeb on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:34:08 AM EST
    Well Mr. Ayers might not have said those exact words, HOWEVER, he still is TOTALLY unrepentant for his bombing of the Pentagon over 40 years ago & he said he wished he could have done more.

    Regardless of whether he said those words on 9/11 or not, to me he is a despicable human being.  

    Isn't there a phrase "you are the company you keep"?

    Ayers did say those exact words (5.00 / 4) (#107)
    by angie on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:48:57 AM EST
    and they were published on 9/11/01 in the NY Times -- yes, he said them before the WTC tragedy, but by bad luck (or karma) they ran on 9/11.  And the justification that what he said was somehow "ok" because he said it before 9/11 and not after is rationale only an Obama loyalist can embrace.  There is NO EXCUSE for anyone wishing they had bombed more places -- that goes for Osama bin Laden and it certainly goes for William Ayers.
    People can try to blame Hillary all they want to deflect from Obama's bad judgment when picking his associates, but if he is the nominee, Hillary will not be there to distract from Obama's short comings.  He will be on his own, and he will be lucky to carry the same states Kerry did -- and we know where that got us.  GAH! What is wrong with Democrats -- instead of siding with the only Democrat to win 2 terms since FDR, they are listening to Kerry, Kennedy & Daschel -- the losing side of the party.

    Precisely (none / 0) (#119)
    by facta non verba on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 08:59:27 AM EST
    Ayers lamented not bombing more. Talk about not showing regret and Obama did away from that relationship then. Frankly he should away from Senator Tom Coburn as well.

    When you are planning to run for president (none / 0) (#209)
    by americanincanada on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:23:51 AM EST
    of the united states...you should certainly be smart enough to know that you should not associate with unrepentent former domestic terrorists.

    It's a no brainer.


    people seem very pissed at hillary (none / 0) (#120)
    by ajain on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:00:22 AM EST
    on Mark Halprin has a source on his page that says that a prominent Clinton Penn backer is going to switch to Obama because of her negativity.

    yeah (5.00 / 1) (#126)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:02:30 AM EST
    and Carter and Gore are going to team up and endorse Obama.
    any day now.

    Its coming from the horse's mouth (none / 0) (#135)
    by ajain on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:08:16 AM EST
    The Obama campaign tells Stephanopoulos that "prominent Pennsylvania supporters" will switch their support from Clinton to Obama Thursday morning due to Clinton's negativity.

    Rendell is changing? Ha! (5.00 / 1) (#175)
    by BarnBabe on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:50:55 AM EST
    I will announce, as a Pennsylvanian and prominent in my own mind, that I am sticking with Hillary because she will make the better President. Sorry, wish I had the money to make headlines.

    BTW, if they would switch because they think Hillary is negative, then I have to question why money makes you prominent.


    as did the Carter Gore thing (none / 0) (#137)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:09:16 AM EST
    no doubt

    If these SD's (none / 0) (#210)
    by ding7777 on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:24:49 AM EST
    represent AA's, then Obama's threat running a primary challenger against the SD worked again.

    Pissed? Really? (5.00 / 1) (#185)
    by ChrisO on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:58:07 AM EST
    "People seem very pissed at Hillary?" Don't you mean, "some say people seem to be very pissed at Hillary?" You need to get the lexicon down better.

    democrats are such a bunch of weak (5.00 / 1) (#194)
    by RalphB on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 10:05:59 AM EST
    wussies.  no wonder the republicans kick them around.

    the way the media is spinning it is that (none / 0) (#129)
    by ruffian on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:04:00 AM EST
    Hillary was very negative.

    I'm not suprised that people are having this reaction - this guy probably didn't even watch the debate.

    If they think that was negative, Obama is in so much trouble in the fall. It boggles the mind.


    indeed (none / 0) (#138)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:09:50 AM EST
    Yawn (none / 0) (#145)
    by cdalygo on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:16:45 AM EST
    And about ten times as many voters are going to switch to HRC because they recognize Obama is not prepared to be president. If any voters actually watched the debate they saw who was ready to go on Day 1.

    Frankly Obama's complaints about HRC's negativity fall flat for two reasons. First voters are not stupid and recognize that Obama has been piling on her since Iowa. Second, it makes him look weak and that will continue to kill his chances in November against McCain's macho image.


    Have they been getting daily Obama mail? (none / 0) (#184)
    by BarnBabe on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:57:59 AM EST
    Gosh, I will have to dig it out of the trash when I go home at lunch and get back to the negativity question. I was appalled he is getting away with this. She sends this positive message and he attacks her. Amazing. It makes me sick that we have gotten to this place of ugliness in the campaign. I am voting for Hillary this November whether she is on the ballot or not. In my heart I know BHO is not ready and I can not vote for hope and change. We always hope and there will be change. GW will be gone. If BHO runs a GE election like he has this one, he will try and blur the issues and the next thing you know, he will be the McCain clone.

    my personal favorite moment (none / 0) (#141)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:12:31 AM EST
    was when Georgie good hair asked the exact question that Hannity had instructed him to ask.
    I could hear Obaman heads exploding from my living room.

    My favorite moment (none / 0) (#150)
    by kmblue on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:20:20 AM EST
    was Clinton's crack about the Republicans
    should just leave.
    I can't remember the exact quote.

    agreed (none / 0) (#155)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:25:49 AM EST
    that was my favorite up and positive moment.
    the other was my favorite not so positive moment.
    it evil of me I know but I am weak and backslidin'.

    I feel like a watched a different debate, (none / 0) (#156)
    by eleanora on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:27:45 AM EST
    because I thought the second half had the best questions and followups so far, just not on enough topics. The moderators wasted way too much time on the gotchas, but they always do and always will.  

    I'm unclear on why it's Hillary's job to help Obama defend himself in the first place. Did I miss a time when he's helped her in any debate? Plus she's getting eviscerated for when she came out strong for party unity and said he could beat McCain. Imagine if she'd tried to defend him on ClingGate--Obama would have jumped all over it--"See, I've been telling you that she's a liar."

    My take on the debate (none / 0) (#171)
    by madamab on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 09:45:49 AM EST
    was that Obama should have stayed out of Hillary's Kitchen.

    He can't stand the heat.

    I'm going to disagree... (none / 0) (#216)
    by kredwyn on Thu Apr 17, 2008 at 11:10:32 AM EST
    in that a semi-automatic pistol only shoots one bullet at a time...just like the six shooter. And many of your shotguns are also semi-auto these days.