Four for four

Well, now we've all heard about "Joe the Plumber". John McCain saw to that. But did it work out for him? Not so much.

Here's one CNN focus group participant, speaking after the debate: "I needed less personal story and more specifics." "...about the third or fourth time I heard it ('joe the plumber') it was getting gimmicky." In that same CNN focus group,
15 to 10 said Obama won over McCain (1 said tied).

Throughout the debate, dial groups went way up (all the way to the roof) when Obama got rolling on the details of his plans and policies on health care, energy, and education. Dials went down every time McCain went negative and personal.

Even those who liked the way McCain started off aggressively said he dived during the last two-thirds of the debate.

Here's what I saw happening during the early-middle part of the debate. Obama started daring McCain to talk about Ayers & etc. To my genuine surprise, McCain took the bait. Ultimately, it cost him the debate, and it may have cost him his last, best chance to change the direction of the election.

The lasting impression of this debate will be of two men facing off, mixing it up, sitting at the same table. One showed persistent disdain and anger toward the other. One--Obama--consistently chose to talk about policies and plans to deal with the issues fretting Americans. The other--McCain--chose consistently to pick and criticize on small and irrelevant details about the other man.

{Did it work? Nope. David Gergen: "Obama never lost his cool."}

Even in his unspoken language, Obama regularly turned directly to the camera and laid out details clearly and methodically. He stuck to the point until he finished the outline. Anyone who watched this debate through came away with the basics of how Obama would handle the big issues of health care, energy, and education. They McCain did finally learn the trick of facing the camera for his summaries, but far too often continued to wander off track and meander around through a field of irrelevancies.

Here come the instant polls. This clinches it: CNN has Obama winning 58% to 31%. CBS' poll is even wider in Obama's favor. Obama's favorability rating among those who watched the debate went up three points to 66% favorable, with his unfavorable dropping by the same amount. McCain's favorability dropped from 51% to 49%; meanwhile, his unfavorable ratings climbed to the same 49%.

Tonight's debate didn't take place in a vacuum. It was another event in a string of events reinforcing a solidifying storyline: Obama the problem-solver, McCain the hatchetman. Americans are looking for a problem-solver now, on an increasingly urgent basis.

Game and set to Obama. Match?

That's what the next 22 days are about. Early voting starts tomorrow (today by the time you are probably reading this). It's time to get out our vote. Now!

Comments

"Joe the Plumber"

McCain's phony storyline gets the big audience raspberry.

Dan Besse

Dan Besse

Thought there were only 3 debates....

"You could say, 'Look, is this guy, Laden, really the bad guy that's depicted?' Most of us have never heard of him before." John McCain, following Clinton's strikes on al Qaeda camps

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.
-me

Depends...

...on whether Rick Warren's forum is included, since the cone of silence didn't really work.

I'm counting the veeps

as number four.

Dan Besse

Dan Besse

Just figured that out, slow morning brain

"You could say, 'Look, is this guy, Laden, really the bad guy that's depicted?' Most of us have never heard of him before." John McCain, following Clinton's strikes on al Qaeda camps

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.
-me

You are exactly right!

I could see that Obama wanted McSame to come on with his 'Ayers terrorist line', and when he did, Obama took it apart with his methodical style that left little doubt in the end. And by trying to inject his economic and health care ideas, he made big points with Mr. Average Guy! Barring any big 'turn of events', Obama may be going into the White House with an LBJ type tidal wave.

That old Mavericky McCain

stayed all mavericky by deciding not to debate and instead yell at people to get off his lawn! Boy we saw his bad side last night, literally.....

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots.

Progressive Discussions

I just got back from voting this morning.

The polls opened at 8:30, I got there at 9, and I was voter number 111. I think that's a lucky number! Though I suspect from the crowd I saw it was mostly a republican crowd, it felt so good to cast my vote for Obama/Biden, Perdue, Dalton, and all of the other Dems that I had decided on. Even though I could have voted for the President and then voted straight ticket on the front side, I took great pleasure in voting individually for each candidate.

The local race here that was the most delightful for me to vote in was the District Attorney's race. Our current DA, Maureen Kreuger, an extremely partisan republican, is being challenged by an independent, fair-minded, experienced man who has been endorsed by the local Democratic Party, Tony Berk. Tony is a former ADA here, and now is an ADA in Robeson County. He is a good man, and an excellent attorney. He's been the subject of a vicious smear campaign by local Republicans, so I colored in his oval extra hard. I'll have more about the Kreuger/Berk race later. I have such a love/hate relationship with politics.

But the part I love is voting! Go. Go. Vote. Today! And take someone with you!

Linda, I had a conversation with the head of our BOE yesterday

asking if they were expecting long lines and she said that they were. Then I asked her if she could explain how a false voter registration could harm my ability to vote wherein she went off on a rambling tangent about how it could lead to the government shutting down the election process and that would harm us all. What? I asked her if she's had any problems with false voter registrations and this was the puzzling/alarming part. She said that she has had many felons register and that when they register they commit another felony. I asked if North Carolina changed that law and she said that they had to be recertified once they had served their time and any probation before they were elligible but in the mean time she has been forwarding them for criminal prosecution!

I've read a couple of diaries and the Army Times about the 1st Brigade, 3rd Division training for a "Homeland Tour"

Beginning Oct. 1 for 12 months, the 1st BCT will be under the day-to-day control of U.S. Army North, the Army service component of Northern Command, as an on-call federal response force for natural or manmade emergencies and disasters, including terrorist attacks.

It is not the first time an active-duty unit has been tapped to help at home. In August 2005, for example, when Hurricane Katrina unleashed hell in Mississippi and Louisiana, several active-duty units were pulled from various posts and mobilized to those areas.

But this new mission marks the first time an active unit has been given a dedicated assignment to NorthCom, a joint command established in 2002 to provide command and control for federal homeland defense efforts and coordinate defense support of civil authorities.

Does anyone else have their tin-foil hats at the ready?

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots.

Progressive Discussions

Did you speak to Glenda Clendenin?

She's usually pretty straightforward and smart. She's so good, I'd have to look up her affiliation to know it, and I haven't bothered.

Then I asked her if she could explain how a false voter registration could harm my ability to vote wherein she went off on a rambling tangent about how it could lead to the government shutting down the election process and that would harm us all.

This sounds like a Cheney move, doesn't it? I'll save the tin foil for now. False registrations don't really hurt anyone. Voter fraud could, if it were carried out. Voter purges - that's what really hurts.

Isn't she the head of the BOE?

I asked for her because all of my prior experiences with her have been good. I did not expect this reaction.

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots.

Progressive Discussions

Hmmm

I know zero about her politics besides her party affiliation, but it does seem like she's done a pretty good job as D.A. I'll be interested to hear what you have to say.

Of course, my real question is why is the DA position an elected office in the first place

I don't think it should be an elected position, either.

And if it is an elected position, it ought to be "unaffiliated", like Judges, etc. Because you know, we all know how unaffiliated that all is.

I'm preparing one of my first posts in a long time as to why I think she's a waste as a DA but a pretty damn good politician and why I don't want her as The People's Attorney - which is what she is, after all.

Haha

I did the exact same thing. Voted for each person individually, even though I voted for only dems.

PS- Can I just say how satisfying it was to get to vote against people like Dole and McCrory and Les Merritt and for competent people like Obama and Hagan and Perdue? It made my week when I did my absentee ballot.

"Keep the Faith"

"Keep the Faith"