A Very Good Night for Clinton updated & bumped
|The first Democratic debate.|
Hillary Clinton did what she needed to do and then some. She sounded strong and made it over the most important bar of all: Hillary Clinton passed the commander in chief test. The personality bar was an easy one for her, too. She looked good and was strong on every question, including on guns, not afraid to take it on. Clinton hit the right note on self deprecation as well, saying she’d made many mistakes in the last years.
Joe Biden had the moment of the night. He was also the strongest on Iraq. He
was short and concise, which was good for him. I thought he was second strongest by far.
Obama phoned it in and lost me, especially on the details of response. It reminded me of what I saw at the health care forum. Just not aggressive enough and slow on the draw. He came off very much a senator, but not a commander in chief. Also, Axelrod was on afterwards with Matthews on MSNBC. I got the distinct impression he was making excuses for Obama’s lackluster performance. Matthews offered Obama a whole hour for a college tour show. Axelrod wouldn’t even accept. There is something very careful about this “personality” campaign that smells of handlers protecting their candidate. It’s a mistake. If they’re trying to keep Obama away from too many question and answers they’re succeeding, but the image being portrayed isn’t good.
Edwards wasn’t on his game. I don’t know if he’s trying to appear serious, illustrating his gravitas, but it comes off as lacking in energy.
Richardson was just plain awful.
Dodd was good but didn’t stand out.
The noise, and I mean that in a good way, came from Kucinich who was strong, with Mike Gravel the pitbull of the pack.
photo by J. Scott Applewhite/AP