Worst Ever?


Was this John McCain’s worst debate performance ever? Or perhaps the worst debate performance by any presidential candidate in history? He was so uncomfortable, so tense, breathing so heavily, and speaking in such splintered patterns, that he failed to have impact, emotionally or intellectually, with most of his answers.

9:59 p.m. The debate is approaching its hour mark and as yet, one notable name has yet to be uttered – Bill Ayers, the Vietnam-era radical terrorist who ultimately became a college professor and played a role in the start of Obama’s
political career. He has dominated much of the campaign dialogue since the
weekend, and some McCain supporters were hoping he would broach Obama’s link to him as a way to question the Democrat’s judgment. Nor, for that matter, has Iraq
or Afghanistan figured in the debate. Instead, the debate has centered around
domestic issues. On a deceptively simple question – is health care a privilege, a right or a responsibility – a key difference between the two men emerges, completely in line with their differing political philosophies.

McCain terms it a responsibility; Obama a right.

This divergence almost assuredly will get vigorous dissected in the day to come.

Where is McCain’s fight? Where is Bill Ayers? Is the McCain campaign so confident that it can win without direct confrontation? Or is it afraid that direct attacks on Barack would carry more penalty than gain?

McCain doesn’t seem to calm down to a level of comfort you would expect on the second question of the night until about 10:20, during the segment on foreign affairs.

10:08 p.m. As the debate hits its hour mark, the subject turns to what would have dominated the discussion a year ago – foreign affairs.

McCain repeats what was in mantra in the first debate – Obama “does not understand” the nation’s national security responsibilities.

Obama, who some thought too often allowed that assertion to go unchallenged in the first debate, focuses on Iraq and seeks to turn the charge on its head. Recalling his opposition – as an Illinois state senator – to the congressional resolution authorizing force in Iraq, he says yes, he dies not “understand how we invaded a country that had nothing to do with” the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

“And it’s been costly to us,” he adds, focusing on the “enormous strain” the war has out on the federal budget – a point that may carry more force against the backdrop of the economic turmoil.

So you got what you wanted – a debate on the issues – and I suspect the audience, which started out fairly high, dropped at a record rate as this tedious debate, devoid of necessary fisticuffs over Barack’s shady past and lack of preparedness for the job, never developed a level of tension that would acknowledge the importance of what is at stake.


2 Responses to “Worst Ever?”

  1. 1 Anonymous

    Fell asleep through most of the debate. What little I saw, at least McCain gave specifics on what he would do. Obama’s was the same old… 8 years of George Bush. He still has no concrete solutions on how to solve ANY of the problems we are facing. Although, Obama made it clear that he would raise taxes.
    McCain doe not have the right image. This is how shallow this country has become.

  2. 2 shirtsbyeric

    I’m gonna have to re read the constitution because I don’t recall health care being a right.

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