Sunday, August 19, 2007

Debate Blogging

The ABC This Week Democratic debate just ended. I watched it with what started as a critical eye, set to pick apart the minutiae. Then I remembered that there are a gazillion blogs that will be doing that, so I’m just going to give my overall perceptions of each candidate.

I can’t really put my finger on it, but Barack Obama is like the guy from high school you wanted desperately to go out with, but once you went out with him, it turned out he does nothing for you. He's supposed to be perfect, so why is there no zip? Ladies? Know what I mean here? He presents himself very well, he has some good things to say, they are just so scripted it’s dizzying. Or they strike me that way, at least.

Hillary, too, is well scripted and polished and on-message. Of course, being able to control a message the way she does is a good quality in a lot of ways when it comes to selecting a president. She seems to be flirting with an apology for her vote on the AUMF.

John Edwards is forthright with his apology, and that plays well in a country that is sick to death of this war. He seemed to hit a lot of the right notes, and at times seemed downright presidential. At other times, he seems to flirt with schmaltz and that makes me roll my eyes.

Joe Biden amuses me. He always has, actually. I’m not sure what he is running for, certainly not president, most likely a cabinet position, and I think that would be just fine and dandy.

Chris Dodd is having a blast! He is having more fun than any candidate on the stage. That is because he might as well just come out and say “Hey, I’m running for Secretary of State!” And if we can’t get Bill Clinton, then Chris Dodd would be a good alternative.

Mike Gravel is clearly nuts. In his lucid moments, he says some things that need to be said, and makes some sense. But the rest of the time – that is to say most of the time – he’s the crazy uncle that you were afraid would send your significant other running for the exits when they met him. After one of his outbursts of unspeakable truth, my husband said “He’s insane. I love him.”

Dennis Kucinich – what the hell? He sure does say a lot of the things I want to hear, damn him anyway. Why does the Rob Schneider candidate have to be the one getting so much right?

Finally – as you know if you have looked at the side bar, I am supporting Richardson in the primary. That is because he comes right out and says in plain English that he will restore the Constitution, Habeas Corpus and the Fourth Amendment. And damnit, that is the most important thing. I trust him to end the war, I trust him to negotiate first and give diplomacy it’s proper due. He simply has the best resume. His presentation needs a little tweaking, but his message is right. If he isn’t on the ticket, I would prefer him in a diplomatic role. In fact, he falls between Bill Clinton and Chris Dodd on my short list for Secretary of State.

It’s early, the first vote has yet to be cast. But any one of the candidates on the stage – Gravel included – would do a better job of governing than the slavering authoritarians on the other side that would just finish scrapping the Constitution and the ideals that make us Americans.

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