Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Hillary Fails to Land a Blow

I've just watched the whole Clinton-Obama debate screened last night from Ohio. Most pundits called it a score draw. I don't. I call it a win for Obama. Hillary Clinton needed a big win and she failed to get it - hence it is a victory for Obama. I actually thought she copped by far the toughest questioning, but her pleading for sympathy seemed inappropriate and phoney. The only area she came across as more knowledgeable was foreign policy, but few Americans vote on that issue alone. Obama failed to rise to her bait on a number of occasions and came across as sincere, polite and informed. Hillary was shrill, defensive and a little nasty.

Clinton is still ahead in the Ohio polls, but only by four or five points. Obama leads in Texas, but very narrowly. If Obama wins both states next Tuesday we'll see how magnanimous Hillary can be in defeat, or whether she intends to prolong her agony all the way to the convention in Denver.


Anonymous said...

TIME (Joe Klein): He won. He not only won by not losing, but he also won on points--and on demeanor, and on quickness…

Time (Jay Carney): Hillary Clinton missed some opportunities tonight. Her complaint at the beginning about the format of the debate seemed to fall flat.

TIME (Mark Halperin) …Obama: B+, Clinton: B- “Avoided lofty rhetoric and focused on presenting himself as cool, deliberative, and substantive. Well prepared and focused.” LINK (On Clinton: “Her conviction that the media is biased against her seemed to throw her off throughout, and she was too distracted by her frustration with Obama and the press to truly shine.”)

NBC (Mark Murray): … Obama has an excellent command of his plan and his defense.

MSNBC (David Gregory): …What you see time and time again with Barack Obama is a coolness about him. He absorbs a particular attack or a question or a pointed statement and tries to maybe acknowledge the point and then turn it around.

Washington Post (Chris Cillizza) …Obama successfully parried most of Clinton's offense and even turned some of her aggressiveness against her.

Politico (Ben Smith) “Back to the war”: … it's always been Obama's trump card, and he returns to it tonight

AMERICAblog (Joe Sudbay): … Obama was steady on a broad range of issues … In my view, the win goes to Obama. A clean win.

The New Republic (Michael Crowley): …Obama is quick on his feet and good humored. He also conveys a certain bemused remove from the bizarre conventions of traditional insider politics.

ABC (Rick Klein): …Notice that Obama is the first to try to turn the argument to Sen. McCain -- their battle has already begun, if tentatively, and Obama welcomes it.

Ross said...

"Hillary Failes to Land a Blow

She should have called in Monica's help.

Theo Spark said...

She is going down and not in a Monica sense. There again Obama's life expectancy isn't too great! This is going to get messy!!!

Anonymous said...

Though I prefer Obama I was disappointed with both of them for failing to know, say and pronounce the name Dmitry Medvedev. It doesn't amount to a hill of beans but just as a basic debate prep point you can imagine a canny questioner trying to repeat the infamous Bush performance.

Yak40 said...

I don't care for either of them but there's no doubt that Hillary took a pounding, Russert was out to get her that was obvious.

Obama however said nothing to make him seem a good choice either, he got mostly softball questions as is the norm usually for all sides in these things but Russert was on a tear this time !

Anonymous said...

"Her conviction ...": we can but hope.

Anonymous said...

Again this obsession with battering Hilary.. Does she frighten you that much

Obama or Hilary….Doesnt matter, the Tories have backed McCain

Andrew Cooper said...

There was a nice spin on all this on The Daily Show recently. (Courtesy of More 4, for those who haven't discovered it.)

The show's spoof 'black correspondent' was asked by host John Stewart whether he thought it was amazing that so many people were supporting a black guy.

He replied 'Ah, but at this point they are only voting for their right to vote for a black guy. When it comes to the actual election they'll decide that a 71 year old white guy is about as much change as they really want'.

Many a true word, etc., and I fear that he's right.

Anonymous said...

The Tories have backed McCain? Doh.
Poor judgement on their part then. >>>typical.

Obama will be the next President of the USA.

Cameron should wake up and smell the coffee.

Anonymous said...

I agree entirely with your take Iain. This race will be over next Tuesday when she loses in Texas and fights to a draw in Ohio. I actually think she will look to preserve her legacy going forward by conceding and endorsing Obama. She is perfectly aware that if she can't win those two primaries, she can't win anywhere and any effort to steal the nomination either by superdelegates or seating the Florida and Michigan delegates will make her even more reviled.

So, by March 5, we will have a McCain/Obama contest which I think will be a fascinating contest between two pretty decent guys. Early polls suggest Obama has an advantage but it's a long way till November and who knows what secrets come out of the closet before then.

A question for Iain/conservatives. Do any of you actually hate John McCain's alleged betrayal of conservative principles so much that you would prefer to see him lose?

Anonymous said...

John McCain should lose because he will carry on with George Bush's hateful and fear mongering policies.

McCain will lose because he wants to stay in Iraq.

McCain will lose because he is about the past not the future.

McCain will lose because he is just far too old.

McCain will lose because his stepford wife is pretty bonkers and a liability.

McCain will just lose. Obama is the right man, in the right place, at the right time.

The writing is on the wall.

Go Obama.

Anonymous said...

The entire Republican party is out of touch with the American voter. The standard-bearer, John McCain thinks sniggering at Barack Obama's position on Iraq is a winner.

"I'm not embarrassed to tell you that I did not watch the Democrat debate last night, but I am told that Senator Obama made the statement that if Al Qaeda came back to Iraq after he withdraws – after the American troops are withdrawn – then he would send military troops back, if Al Qaeda established a military base in Iraq," McCain said while campaigning in Tyler, TX. "I have some news: Al Qaeda is in Iraq. Al Qaeda, it's called Al Qaeda in Iraq, and my friends, if we left they wouldn't be establishing a base, they wouldn't be establishing a base, they'd be taking a country. And I'm not going to allow that to happen my friends. I will not surrender. I will not surrender to Al Qaeda..."

"So you know this is how politics works," Obama said. "McCain thought that he could make a clever point by saying ,'Well, let me give you some news Barack, Al Qaeda is in Iraq,' like I wasn't reading the papers. Like I didn't know what was going on."

Barack Obama : "But I have some news for John McCain, and that was that there was no such thing as Al Qaeda in Iraq until George Bush and John McCain decided to invade Iraq."

McCain stands no chance of winning a general election. He treats the public like they're fools. McCain just doesn't get it. He's hopeless.

Obama is the future.

Anonymous said...

Go Canvas!

Bill has never believed in Hillary as Pres and has stitched her up, imo.

McCain v Obama, hmmmm. I'm still not convinced Obama is the real deal. He reminds me of Cameron - I want to see the small print. Same applies to McCain, though.