Saturday, September 27, 2008

Presidential Debate: tie goes to Obama

John McCain did well in the debate and will give his supporters enough ammunition to claim victory. Barack Obama also performed well enough to satisfy his supporters. So, a tie, right?

Well, not so quickly. The debate is not only to solidify the support you have going in, but to convince undecided and independent voters that you are the right choice. And this is where Obama won.

Undecided voters saw the younger Obama hold his own against McCain in areas that were supposed to be McCain's greatest strengths. That's a win for Obama. Not a knock-out, but a win where it counts.


  1. I believe it was a tie and I’m not so sure Obama would have swayed the undecided voters. McCain demonstrated his leadership and maturity in terms of world affairs and foreign policy and I think he made Obama look naïve in that category. This was especially true when he chided Obama for publicly stating that America would make strikes into Pakistan – I don’t think McCain has ruled out that idea, just that it was irresponsible to say it in public while Pakistan’s political situation is so fragile. Obama was eloquent as always, but stuttered on occasion and called McCain ‘Tom’ once…and ‘Jim’ another time – of the two he was the only one to have a ‘senior moment’.

  2. You make my point, David: McCain's supporters will see enough to claim victory for him.

    As to that bit of nonsense about “publicly stating that America would make strikes into Pakistan.”

    The real point is that America has made strikes into Pakistan, a fact well publicized around the globe, and it did not have the disastrous results predicted by Senator McCain. So, for undecided voters, this is a non issue—it’s strictly for his fans.

    And, as for the little gotchas you listed at the end of your post? Oh please… I'm more interested in the serious elements of the debate.

  3. Fair enough, but you have to admit if it had been McCain forgetting the name of the soldier on his bracelet or stumbling over Barack's name people would have been all over it as proof that he was senile. Base solely on the “serious” aspects of the debate, I do not think there was anything from either side that would have captured the imagination of the undecided voter. McCain won simply because the expectations for him were lower, everyone believed that Obama would wipe the stage with him and that was not the case. I am looking forward to the Vice President debate – that should be an interesting show.

  4. Good point, and perhaps you're right. Time will tell, of course.

    Yes, the vice-president debate will be worth watching for sure.