Posted by Peter
Last night's debate was the only one of the three I actually had the pleasure (is that the right word?) of watching. The debates, and all their surrounding pageantry, punditry scheming, spinning etc have begun to lose appeal for me. It almost seems like It has turned into a style contest, with both candidates trying not to be the first to slip up and make a inappropriate facial expression, or mispronounce a word. It seems like the content of the candidate's words are almost secondary.
So who do I think won the debate last night? I think Bush looked like the more presidential figure last night, standing firm and resolute, telling what he would do in his second term, while talking about his administration's accomplishments during the last four years. He felt more caring and human, showing best in his answers to questions about faith, and how he feels about the strong women in his life.
John Kerry on the other hand continued on with his standard format of "complain about bush, complain some more, and then say, "i have a plan"" I'm still waiting for the details on most of those "plans".
Both candidates had their strong and weak points during the debate. I think Bush scored some big points during the questions about faith, his wife and on social issues. On those issues Kerry reminded me of a squirrel, who when he sees a car coming, runs one way then another, then back again trying not to get hit. Talk about straddling the fence, he was trying to be on both sides of just about every issue.
Kerry seemed stronger in some of the policy/economic issues, with he and Bush going back and forth trading dueling economic numbers and plans. I don't think either candidate came out on top and these parts of the debate were essentially a wash.
Based on Bush's stronger performance in the area of social policy, I think Bush ended up winning this debate.