Okay, so this one wasn't nearly as easy to call as Thursday's presidential debate. That was easy - Kerry came off as twenty-six and a half times smarter, more put-together, and more presidential than the current President of the United States. This one was far more even - both candidates made a good showing, if for different reasons.
I don't think that John Edwards made as much headway with the Democratic platform as Kerry did before; he did, however, directly address a lot of the attacks that had heretofore been unaddressed. I just don't think he did it well enough. Assuming that anyone besides myself was actually watching the debate, I think we needed to see John Edwards leap out of his chair, overturn the table and come after Cheney fighting. As it was, he came across as just a little bit tame. His general attitude, though, seemed to be very open and direct and approachable, which is a nice contrast to Kerry's relative austerity. Edwards seems like the kind of guy that you could just sit down with and say, "Hey, John, what's up with Medicare?" and he'd say, "Yeah, sure, what do you want to know?"
And I'll say that Cheney did a good job, too. Compared to Bush, I'd say he did a fantastic job. He did little to nothing more than spewing the same damn Republican talking points that were spewed on Thursday and at every opportunity before that - but he did it in an intelligent, articulate way. Dick Cheney came across as twelve and a quarter times more presidential than the current President of the United States. One of the Repub pundits made the comment that it's good to know that Cheney is just a heartbeat away from the presidency (and I know he didn't mean to sound like he wished Bush were dead) - I would agree, 'cause Cheney sounded really good, if I didn't know that he was inherently evil and will go home and eat two babies to recover from the debate.
So I'm calling this one a draw. If anything - choke - Cheney came out a little bit on top. I don't, however, think that it's going to have a lot of effect on the polls, and it's not going to convince any swing voters, because both were really playing to their bases. But I think that Cheney regained some of the credibility that Bush seriously lost less than a week ago ("You forgot Poland," hee hee).
Question, though - what's the point of Spin Alley? Is anyone even a little bit surprised by the spinning done by the pundits? Karen Hughes pretended to believe that Bush won Thursday's debate; it's just more political crap identical to the political crap that we've been getting for the past year, except now they're spreading it for free.
And a final point - NBC held up Ana Cox, Wonkette herself, as an example of a liberal blogger. Don't get me wrong - I love Wonkette, read it every day, frequently laugh out loud and/or spit coffee over my computer monitor - at work. I just wouldn't really call her a political blogger. Now, if Dick Cheney had worn, like, totally the wrong tie, or if John Edwards had slipped up and implied that he was boinking an intern, she'd be all over it; under current circumstances, I might have gone with a Kos or an Atrios. Or, y'know, a Practically Harmless. That's all.