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Saturday, September 27, 2008

No Sale

  • Bill Dyer (Beldar) offers this assessment of last night's debate:
  • I don't agree with the conventional wisdom that a tie goes to Obama, and I don't think this was even a tie. Obama is still the greater unknown of the two candidates, and the most vulnerable to last-minute jitters in the voting booth on election day. Obama needs these debates to open a big lead that will be immune to last-minute erosion, and he did not advance that goal tonight. That's the main reason why, in the big picture, he lost this debate.
    It is widely accepted as fact that the 1980 election was decided by Reagan's performance in the one and only debate with President Carter. The ex-actor, caricatured as a trigger happy nuclear cowboy, proved himself to be a steady and knowledgeable leader, fully ready to be commander in chief. He reassured voters who were anxious to throw the hapless Carter aside that he was an able and safe alternative.

    Obama needed to make a similar impression last night and he simply failed to do so. He did not seem tough enough or resolute enough to tip the election in his favor; he did not close the deal, and you only get so many opportunities to close the deal, with each successive effort to close meeting greater resistance than the effort preceding it.

    In a still-dangerous world, Obama does not (yet) seem to be a safe alternative.

  • For those voters looking for change, particularly in the area of foreign policy, perhaps their candidate ought to be John McCain. Jonah Goldberg makes a very clever point:
  • According to Major Garrett, the Obama camp says that McCain's experience-talk in the debate hurts McCain because this election is about "change." There's obviously some truth to that, but I think foreign policy is actually the one area where the "change" argument is the weakest as an argument against McCain. Obviously, it works against Bush and people who think McCain is Bush II. But Obama already has those voters. I would bet that among independents, McCain's grasp of foreign policy and his record actually demonstrates how different he is from Bush. (emphasis mine)
    Competence as a qualification for the job? Imagine that.

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