Friday, October 3, 2008

Biden/Palin Debate

It was disappointing from an entertainment point of view. I expected a bloodbath, and at least half a dozen awkward moments as Sarah Palin stared open-mouthed at the moderator, trying to figure out what to say.

But Palin did far better than I or anyone else probably expected. It's hard to reconcile the Palin from last night with the one from the Gibson and Couric interviews. Maybe she's a good study, and when she prepares she does well, and maybe she just didn't prep for the interviews. Or maybe she has some sort of phobia regarding reporters that makes her brain freeze up. Anyway, she did a good job, and most Republicans will probably breathe a sigh of relief, convince themselves that the VP slot isn't that important anyway, and cast their vote. But I don't think the performance was enough to undo the damage of the last two weeks, and probably won't sway independents or undecideds in any significant way, which is what McCain really needs.

Biden was good too, but I didn't think he was nearly as sharp as he was in the primary debates, where he managed to seem honest and down-to-earth and less of a politician than the others on-stage.


JP said...

Palin does well when there are no follow-up questions, as in the debate. All of her embarrassing moments with Couric involved being asked a followup question when it became clear Palin was being evasive.

Palin retreated to her stump speech about energy every time she was cornered. A good moderator has the duty of making sure candidates aren't allowed to walk away from the question, and Ifill failed at that.

Palin will be the first VP in modern history to refuse to give a press conference before election day. This is amazing. If the media had any scruples, they would refuse to cover her campaign stops until she agrees to schedule a press conference where she takes questions (including followup questions) from reporters. Instead, they won't even discuss it, and our ability to evaluate our future leaders continues to dwindle precipitously.

Kenny Wyland said...

JP hit the nail on the head. She can spew her talking points all day long, but when someone challenges her on the crap she says or gives her a follow-up question, then she dies.

For the debate, they clearly coached her that any time she got cornered to randomly attack or change the topic. That's why she jumped to talking about Energy over and over or why when Biden confronted her on Iraq she paused for a long time and then whipped out "white flag of surrender."

She didn't know what to do, so she went for a ridiculous catch phrase to distract the attention.

Laurie said...

So Carl Cameron of Fox News interviewed Palin yesterday about her performance during the debate and how it differed from her performance in previous interviews:

She's basically saying that she's "annoyed" at her interviewers' attempts to get her to think on her own.

Katie Couric was missing an opportunity to ask her the right questions? Whatever, Palin.

What a laughingstock this woman is.

Emily said...

I think her folksy banter and anecdotes are absolutely transparent, annoying, and overshadow anything of value she might be saying.