Tuesday, August 7, 2007

"I'm the Seabiscuit of this campaign." and other thoughts on tonight's Democratic debate -- Part 2

(Part 1)

On to the audience questions...
  • Oh come on, a "celebrity questioner?" I feel bad for her, but I don't like the idea of ringers. Worse, how can Biden deflect the question of a mine widow to talk about Iraq? He got appropriately booed by the crowd.

  • Kucinich is still on fire. Although calling it "the Workers White House" will probably have the conservatives breaking out in hives.

  • Richardson apparently wasn't paying attention to the questioner from Michigan, as he just said he was in his town in Iowa.His answer on job protection was weak, the response on health care for veterans was much better.

  • A fantastically emotional question from a disabled steelworker, gets a standing ovation from the crowd. Question goes to Edwards, which is right in his wheelhouse. He'd give workers the same benefits as their CEOs, and he'd push for universal health care. He gets a huge ovation for shouting down Olbermann's effort to enforce the rules.

  • Clinton doesn't answer the question she was given, but she answers all the rest of them. The curtain behind her nearly blows into the distance.

  • Obama: I think it's possible to be a nation of laws, and a nation of immigrants.

  • Joe Biden is pandering to nurses, but not answering the question. Apparently the debate has devolved into a question of who has walked more picket lines than the other. Blah, blah, blah. He is not connecting at all.

  • Kucinich wants Medicare for all. Ooooh. I don't know about that. Universal health care, yes. Universal Medicare? Count me out.

  • Now Edwards is going on and on about how many picket lines he's walked. OK, we get it. He spends a little too much time saying "I want to say something about this."

  • The graphic says "Robert Flynn, insulator." That's kind of cool.

  • The crowd is starting to get tired of candidates going back to answer questions that they haven't been asked. Dodd booed for talking about health care instead of energy independence.

  • Even Hillary getting booed for postponing the question. Sounds like someone in the audience is trying to shout her down.
Third break. Kucinich continues to be the only candidate that has connected consistently. Edwards did well, but the crowd started to tire of his "I picketed more than you" exchange with Biden. Biden is withering on the vine. He's been brutal.


Lightning round...
  • Richardson's VP would not be Dick Cheney, and would be a member of executive branch. Makes the old joke about how any of the other candidates would make a good VP.

  • Oh look, there is a lightning round clock. So we can see how long Hillary will avoid answering the question about lobbyists.

  • Barack what about bundling by lobbyists? I don't have any lobbyists bundling for me. Oh, and I walk picket lines.

  • John Edwards, how are your rich lawyer donors better than Hillary's rich lobbyists? They just are, Keith.

  • Joe Biden, would you appoint a Republican to Homeland Security? He'd consider it. Not the answer we're looking for, Joe. The Republicans have proven to be incompetent.

  • Dodd makes sure to mention that Homeland Security doesn't allow collective bargaining.

  • Kucinich, what has congress accomplished? Well, nothing, so I'll talk about how I'm tilting at windmills with all these bills I can't get passed.

  • Obama, would you honor Barry Bonds at the WH? Heh, heh. Don't ask me that, Keith.

  • Hillary, what would you do to fix Katrina? I'd have a 10-point plan that I can't tell you about.

  • Joe Biden, would you pledge to stop no bid contracts? Yes.

  • Question for all:Would it bother you that the next campaign will start as soon as you're inaugurated?
    • Richardson didn't hear the question, so he's talking about bringing the country together or something.
    • Obama says yes, campaigns are too expensive and long.
    • Biden would be such a good president, that no one would want to replace him.
    • Hillary will be too busy to worry about it.
    • Dodd says the campaign started early because people hate Bush.
    • Edwards is talking about the guy with the cleft palate again. At least the second debate where he's talked about the guy. He's connecting.
    • Kucinich: "I'm the Seabiscuit of this campaign." Lots of jokes there.
That's it. Kucinich won, but that doesn't really matter. Edwards also connected well with the crowd and was a close second. Clinton and Dodd also did well. Obama was alright. I think he's still too cautious.

If there was a clear loser, it was Biden. He didn't connect at all. Richardson had a very lackluster showing.

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