Thursday, October 14, 2004

Debate-terator

The third and final Presidential debate has come and gone and the winner is ... Kerry. (transcript here.)

Kerry didn't dominate as much as I would have liked, but he didn't make any major gaffes and Bush absolutely blew any opportunity he had to paint Kerry into a liberal, and damaging, corner. Of course the liberals dominated the post-debate spin and racked up a bunch of victories on the online polls. Of course, these polls are scientifically garbage, but if they can add to the spin, then it's worth it. For some of the more reliable polling, it looks like Kerry dominated except in the ABC poll, where he won by one point (but more Republicans were polled, so the numbers are skewed somewhat). So any way you want to look at it, Kerry won. Now it's a waiting game to see what the conventional wisdom will be. An early theme coming out is that Bush assumed a different persona for each debate, similar circumstances to how Gore was portrayed over the three 2000 election debates.

My take is that I thought Kerry won on substance. Bush answered some of the "heart string" questions effectively, but he did nothing to undermine Kerry's growing gravitas.

Kerry is in a great position for these last 3 weeks, let's just hope there aren't any October surprises, eg, maybe a Bush endorsement from Corey Feldman. That's something Kerry could never recover from.

-MB

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