Monday, January 21, 2008

Democratic debate blogging

What an ugly race this has become. The clear winner of this debate? John Edwards, because at least he got his message out while the other two just bashed away at one another. Just ugly. And I think it's safe to say I have an extraordinarily high threshold for this sort of thing.

7 comments:

the cold cowboy said...

i concur. it was brutal, and it made the party look bad.

maybe i'm too much of a partisan at this point, but of the two front runners, i thought hillary kind of played into barry's hands. it certainly can't help to have the rezko stuff unearthed, but playing defense the whole time can work to one's advantage, as we saw in the new hampshire debate.

while he would have liked to stay above the fray, having hillary dig up dirt live in the debate further played to obama's theme that she's dirty politics, business-as-usual.

to the extent that he can exploit her performance there and cement the ideas that she's the nasty campaigner and he's trying to rise above it, i think he comes out with an edge. i also think the tying of hillary to bill is a winning strategy - people may have liked his policies, but they hated the drama. and that's the side of bill they're seeing now.

haahnster said...

Semi-related question here, Rob...

Why were all the MSM oulets reporting Hillary "won" Nevada, when Obama secured more delegates? Am I the only one that sees an irony in the whole got-more-popular-votes story line? Is it just because in most states the winner of the popular vote will also get the most delegates? Is it laziness? What is it? Why, I ask you, WHY????

Rob said...

I sort of agree, cowboy. There's this storyline out there that Obama risks losing his aura if he gets dragged into these little squabbles and politics-as-usual. But so far that hasn't been the case at all, and I doubt last night really changes that. People's sense of the two candidates is pretty fixed at this point.

It's a war of attrition, and it's getting ugly because both candidates really, really want to win.

On the delegate thing, haahnster, I guess I still think Clinton pretty much won Nevada. A candidate needs more than 2,000 delegates to get the nomination; Clinton won 12 and Obama won 13. The chance that that makes a difference is not very high. But winning the popular vote is more valuable as a barometer/momentum-builder for future contests, so...Clinton won. The delegate thing provided a nice opportunity for spin from the Obama camp, and it's great that they used it. But...it was pretty much spin.

the cold cowboy said...

jake tapper's piece on the clinton's blatantly false slime machine here.

if we had actual journalists, it would be harder to get away with that crap.

Nicole said...

I hope you're right that the sudden ugliness doesn't hurt Obama's "aura." This recent spate of nastiness has been a huge turnoff for me and I've taken a break for my otherwise avid following of the election. Bill is really starting to drive me nuts with his grade school style bullying. Hopefully voters will get put off by it and vote for Obama, much like voters in NH were put off by the media's constant attacks on Hillary and voted for her.

Rob said...

Nicole, I completely agree, this election is really wearing me down. And I really have no idea anymore what is going to work and what will backfire. Ugh.

Jake said...

I agree with Haahnster. I also think it's lame that NH was a "massive upset" for Hillary given that she was the frontrunner like a week before that. On top of all that, who cares which candidate gets one more delegate than the other? There's something like 4000+ up for grabs!

I agree with the point that the "momentum" is more important, but the media is really driving the importance of that. If they reported delegate counts instead of assigning a frontrunner/underdog status (that may switch twice a week, and has), people would see this race for what it is: more or less even, currently.