Clinton needs a debate, and Joe Biden needs to get in soon.

Clinton needs a debate, and Joe Biden needs to get in soon.
Word cloud via Gallup

Fiorina put questions about her claim to run for the top job to rest early and often in Wednesday’s debate with a dynamite, substantive performance. Along the way, she was able to effectively shut up GOP frontrunner Donald Trump and come away the clear winner in the field of 11. [Weekly Standard]

NO ONE on the stage could touch Carly Fiorina last night in Simi Valley, California. She’s running for president and proved it last night, but in a party who’s still hungover from Sarah Palin‘s disastrous vice presidential campaign she once and for all extinguished that memory. It proves what a debate can do to wipe away past sins, something that Hillary Clinton could clearly benefit from herself.

The word cloud above reveals what Nate Silver also talks about in a recent post. That Hillary Clinton has gotten herself stuck in a negative spiral that’s feeding off itself. What he doesn’t say is the continuously negative coverage of Clinton is self-inflicted, going back to March when she began the dissembling on the server/email story.

Last night we all saw what a difference a debate can make.

Trump had earlier explained that he was talking about her “persona,” not her looks. Asked about that, Fiorina said acidly, “I think women all over this country heard very clearly what Mr. Trump said.” The audience responded with one of the biggest rounds of applause of the night. Trump’s response: “She’s got a beautiful face, and I think she’s a beautiful woman.” – Dan Balz [Washington Post]

Carly Fiorina was damn near flawless, though as a liberal I couldn’t relate to many of the points she was making. That didn’t keep me from respecting her deep foreign policy brief she came prepared to share or her ability to pointedly prove that she’s the better man among the GOP cast of characters.

As the Gallup word cloud reveals, emails are all people are thinking about when it comes to Hillary Clinton. She allowed the door to stay open on the subject for far too long. That’s the reason many Democrats and Clinton supporters are looking to the Benghazi committee hearing. What Clinton needs are debates and a chance to illustrate why she’d be a good president by making her case through substance. She’s doing “Face the Nation” on Sunday.

And whatever Joe Biden is thinking he better reconsider November. If he’s serious about challenging Hillary Clinton he’s going to need to be in the October debate or his window just might close.

Carly Fiorina did the impossible last night and it wasn’t even on her agenda. She finally put down the fluffy, fact free, word salad candidacy of Sarah Palin.

It’s the first step in moving the GOP to accepting Fiorina as a real contender, instead of automatically thinking that because Marco Rubio didn’t dribble on himself last night, and because he’s a man and the establishment’s messenger, he’s the one.

Oh, and Donald Trump, well, it was about foreign policy so he stayed mostly quiet. But unlike Ben Carson, at least he didn’t hurt himself too much.