Palin’s VP Debate: The Bar Could Not Be Lower

October 3, 2008 at 9:08 pm 1 comment

From the Independent/Swing-voter viewpoint, the candidate who was most presidential was resoundingly Biden. 

There are some in a tizzy that Palin “exceeded expectations” by not completely struggling.  To that group we smile happily and nod our head as they gush about how she didn’t drive the the GOP bus off the cliff. We politely acknowledge her success, much like when a co-worker happily shares how their child passed his math test after the 3rd try.  It’s a long way from the honor roll, but hey – they’re excited so we smile.  We don’t ask what the grade was, it’s just ‘pass’.  We don’t bring up the first two tests.  We soft-sell that our child passed it the first time and got an ‘A’.

We can all be happy for her making it over a bar that could not have been set any lower.  And then we look at Joe.  Here’s a short look at what the writer’s are saying about the VP debate:

The financial meltdown has put a new premium on competence, and Palin did nothing to show she is ready to be in charge. 

It is hard to count any objective measures by which Biden did not clearly win the encounter. She looked like she was trying to get people to take her seriously. He looked like he was running for vice president.

She twice referred to the U.S. commander in Afghanistan, Gen. David McKiernan, as “McClellan.”

After Obama wrapped up the Democratic nomination in June, the Republican knock against him was supposed to be that he was too exotic and too risky.

But in the months since, Obama chose a Washington fixture in Biden, and McCain chose a little-known and little-tested maverick from Alaska. 
 John F Harris, Mike Allen – Politico

Biden did what he came to do–make a clear case against John McCain. And he did it with answers that were more detailed, less rhetorical and far more responsive to the questions. You may disagree with his arguments. Many will. But it’s impossible to say he wasn’t polite, persuasive and well-informed.

I suspect that undecideds will see Biden as more vice-presidential. So far, the surveys seem to support my hunch. CNN’s instapoll gave the debate to the Delaware senator, 51 percent to 36 percent, and 46 percent of undecided voters surveyed by CBS News agreed (only 21 percent thought Palin won). Even if the voters ultimately decide that the Showdown in St. Louis was a draw, there’s no chance that it’ll prove impactful enough to alter the basic contours of the race. Right now, Obama leads by an average of six points and has broken 50 percent in several polls–with only 33 days to go. For McCain, a tie won’t do the trick.

In other words, survival is all well and good. But it’s not the same thing as winning.
Andrew Romano – Newsweek



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