Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Mixed Bag- Debate Edition

Tonight one of the more interesting Presidential debates took place and at the end, we are where we were at the beginning of the debates- no game changers.

Barack's two objectives were to weather (no pun intended) the Bill Ayers attacks and to move the ball down field with no damage. On the first front he did well enough. Bill Ayers came up and he discussed it and then dismissed it making McCain look desperate for bringing iOt up and on the second front he continued to do his part and seem Presidential.

John McCain's two objectives would have been to distance himself from Bush and to seek a game changer. His best moment of the night came in telling Obama "if you wanted to run against George Bush you should have run 4 years ago. That would have been much more effective if he said it earlier in the campaign but it was still his line of the night. However his biggest failing was in not doing enough to change the direction of the campaign.

Some other quick thoughts:

Who dressed McCain in the pinstipes and a black and white tie? How do you dress and old guy in an old style with no color. He looked like he was out of a black and white movie. For that matter he should have stipulated that the debates could not be broadcast in hi-def. Let's just say hi-def is not flattering for John McCain.

I saw the Bill the plumber moment the other day and I will bet that he turns out to have made up his story to ask Obama his question.

I thought excluding the awful visuals and reaction shots, this was a pretty even debate. Unfortunately for John McCain the visuals were part of it and probably contributed to the polling which showed a wide disparity in the "who won polls" showing Obama up about 60-32.

Now on to a few non debate topics.
This is ugly and you can only imagine what they say off camera if they say this on camera.

Maybe the George Wallace references weren't appropriate, but it's hard to say that McCain and Palin in particular have been feeding in this. While I basically think John McCain is an honorable man, I think when the election is over he is going to regret a lot of this. Palin will not because it is in keeping with the small petty vindictive person she is.

I encourage everyone to skim the Branchtower report on Palin. There are some real gems in there that tell you a lot about Sarah Palin's lack of character. Interestingly, I have been going on Anchorage Daily News of late and it is funny to watch their coverage of Palin. On one hand they are proud of her being on the ticket and have some fluff stuff on their site, on the other hand they have blasted her for not just troopergate but a lot of other stuff that they may be waking up to.
I'm making a prediction, she will pull a Mitt Romney and not run for reelection so she can avoid a humiliating loss that would knock her national stature (see Allen, George or Santorum, Rick).
This is brilliant. I think these people are potential "Bradley Effect" voters but I don't think they will ultimately play a deciding role. This is almost as astonishing as the video above:

Ben Smith talks to a Republican consultant, who had done a focus group showing a hard-hitting, no-holds barred anti-Obama attack ad from a 527 that has yet to air, to a group of midwestern Reagan Democrats. The results:

Reagan Dems and Independents. Call them blue-collar plus. Slightly more Target than Walmart.

Yes, the spot worked. Yes, they believed the charges against Obama. Yes, they actually think he's too liberal, consorts with bad people and WON'T BE A GOOD PRESIDENT...but they STILL don't give a f***. They said right out, "He won't do anything better than McCain" but they're STILL voting for Obama.

The two most unreal moments of my professional life of watching focus groups:

54 year-old white male, voted Kerry '04, Bush '00, Dole '96, hunter, Nascar fan...hard for Obama said: "I'm gonna hate him the minute I vote for him. He's gonna be a bad president. But I won't ever vote for another god-damn Republican. I want the government to take over all of Wall Street and bankers and the car companies and Wal-Mart run this county like we used to when Reagan was President."

The next was a woman, late 50s, Democrat but strongly pro-life. Loved B. and H. Clinton, loved Bush in 2000. "Well, I don't know much about this terrorist group Barack used to be in with that Weather guy but I'm sick of paying for health insurance at work and that's why I'm supporting Barack."

I felt like I was taking crazy pills. I sat on the other side of the glass and realized...this really is the Apocalypse. The Seventh Seal is broken and its time for eight years of pure, delicious crazy....

Finally, Barack is currently looking at a landslide and with his cash advantage should be able to stay on offense. The problem is that even though Obama has run a brilliant primary and general election campaign, he is going to face an incredible onslaught of slander over the last 20 days. Can he know back the attacks? If he can he will rack up 380 electoral votes. If he can not he will "only" win with about 289.


1 comment: said...

The focus group in combination with the video of voters = very, very scary.