Well, wasn’t that a lot more interesting than the Presidential debate?
I doubt the two combatants did much to change any minds that are already made up. Those that are voting for O’Biden will still vote for them, whereas those who are voting for McPalin are still going to vote for them. However, here is what the debate DID do, in my opinion:
Sarah Palin dispelled the ridiculous caricatures that the media has been busily shoving down our throats.
No, the woman is not a bimbo. No, she is not an ignorant redneck. And she is not crazy or extreme. She is the girl next door – the smart, driven and attractive one, of course. But more importantly, she is a standard-issue Reagan Republican, which is not a compliment from me, since I hate Reagan with a white-hot passion. However, it is more than thrilling for her base, which has been looking for a new Reagan ever since the man left office in 1988, eight years too late for women, minorities and the middle and poorer classes in America. And her strength, energy, passion, and command of the facts should reassure those on the conservative side that were, either sincerely or insincerely, agitating for her replacement. They will no doubt be over the moon today.
Both Sarah and Joe made the points they wanted to make.
Unfortunately for Joe, his points were not particularly convincing. As I’ve said time and again, Barack Obama’s main problem is that he has ceded far too many points to the Republicans. Thus, Biden was stuck defending Obama’s stupid non-positions, like “The surge worked, but I wouldn’t have voted for it anyway.” On gay rights, Biden made it sound as if the Democratic platform is the same as the Republican platform, when in fact, the O’Biden ticket believes in granting civil unions the same rights as marriage. On offshore drilling, Biden also agreed with Palin, practically chanting “Drill, baby, drill” right along with her.
Joe Biden was also determined to follow the Obama line of attack – that McPalin is Bush. Unfortunately, that attack has not been effective – otherwise, Obama would be 25 points ahead, since Republicans, Democrats, Independents and Rosicrucians all agree that Bush is a horrible President. But Americans don’t like Congresscritters either, and Biden is one, as are McCain and Obama. This strategy of blaming Bush for everything worked in 2006, but now the Democrats share the blame for not impeaching him and ending the war, as they promised to do. They said they would drain the swamp, but they left the biggest messes untouched.
Of course, I disagree with Palin on almost every issue, so to see the candidate I should be able to vote for performing so poorly was quite depressing. Her points were not convincing to me either, but they were well-made, concise and devastating. Debating is about framing, and there’s nothing that Republicans do better than that. (Certainly not governing, as we’ve seen for the past eight years.)
By the way, Gwen Ifill, despite my ribbing of her yesterday, was not heavily biased towards Biden. Obviously, she should have recused herself, and I wish she had. Some of her questions were quite sophomoric, some even morbid (why did she ask that “heartbeat away” question? Ewwwww), and I don’t know why she didn’t bring up the issue of abortion, which is one of the things that Americans fear most about the Governor. Does she feel that it’s a personal issue and not a political one, the way I do – that the government should have no jurisdiction or say into what a person does with her own body? Or was she just trying to avoid controversy? It is, as the King of Siam would say, a puzzlement.
In any case, I would say that Sarah did a wonderful job last night. Too bad she’s not a liberal, but she did show America that women (yes, even pretty ones) can hold their own with the big boyz. It will make it so much easier for the next woman, or women, who run for national office. For that alone, women all over America owe her, and all those who came before her, like Geraldine Ferraro, Shirley Chisholm and our beloved Hillary, a great debt of thanks.
Or perhaps, a song!