Capitol Fax.com - Your Illinois News Radar » 2008 » September
SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
CapitolFax.com
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
Not that you may care what I think, but…

Saturday, Sep 27, 2008

* Both candidates failed miserably on the nation’s financial crisis during last night’s presidential debate.

I thought to myself several times throughout the debate that we were in some fantasy world where giant banks weren’t failing, credit wasn’t drying up at an alarming pace and the government wasn’t planning to spend hundreds of billions of dollars on a financial system bailout. It was simply bizarre, and the moderator, though he did try, failed miserably to press this point home with two candidates who obviously wanted to avoid the issue entirely.

* Both candidates also appeared at times to be running against each other for a US Senate seat. McCain did this more than Obama, but both were guilty. Subcommittees? Earmarks ad infinitum? Bills from long ago? What the heck? The presidency is not the Senate.

* Lacking any real “grand slam” lines, tone of voice and body language become the two most dominant things to look for in any televised presidential debate. There were no easily identifiable grand slam lines, so voice tone and body language is what most “average” voters came away with. McCain clearly lost in the short-term for this reason.

By the way, George Ryan had the same problem in his first debate with Glenn Poshard back in 1998. He was grumpy, aggravated and off his game. During the next debate, a morning event sponsored by ABC7, George was smiling all the time and very gracious to his opponent. Ryan’s “new” demeanor caught Poshard completely off guard and Ryan won that debate hands down.

If he’s at all able (and who knows if he is or not), McCain obviously needs to try his best to lighten up next time. Reagan came back from a horrible performance in his first 1984 debate to deliver his line about his opponent’s “youth and inexperience” during the next debate. Grand slam, big debate win, four more years.

And that’s an important lesson to keep in mind here. First debates are almost always overshadowed by subsequent performances. If McCain can alter his rather strange debate demeanor then he may win the next debate on the expectations game alone.

* Making sure you don’t get walloped in the days after the debate is also hugely important. If it can be shown later that a candidate is what his opponent says he is (in this case, that Obama simply doesn’t grasp important foreign policy issues), the candidate whom everyone thought won can lose big points. So, bringing up the Henry Kissinger stuff was a serious mistake for Obama because - whatever the merits of his points - Obama should’ve known that Kissinger would back up his friend McCain after the debate concluded. Major advantage to McCain on this one.

On the other hand, McCain closing with the line about how experience matters won’t go over well at next week’s vice presidential debate - and Gov. Palin’s absence from the postgame shows only drove this point home even more.

* Obama flubbed, but somewhat recovered, after McCain talked about his bracelet from one of the mothers who had lost her son in Iraq and had pleaded with him to not let her son die in vain. Obama, who just isn’t empathetic enough and rarely brings the names of common folks into his discourse, seemed to uncomfortably struggle at first to remember the name of the soldier on his own bracelet. The resulting pivot - that the mother Obama talked to didn’t want any more mothers to go through this experience - was good, however.

But while the majority of those polled may believe that Obama leans more towards their views on economic issues and Iraq, if the candidate doesn’t show that he truly connects with people on their individual everyday problems, the undecided middle may eventually conclude that he’ll just dump them when the going gets rough.

While that bracelet thing was eventually a decent pivot, both candidates have no real clue how to execute pivots on a regular and effective basis. Bill Clinton and Ronald Reagan were masters of this. Both need to watch tapes of those two guys. After McCain made the point about a federal earmark to study the DNA of bears, Obama could’ve come back with Gov. Palin’s request of a federal earmark to study the DNA of harbor seals. It would’ve been a great comeback line, and set up next week’s veep debate as well. The Obama zinger about Spain’s prime minister and McCain’s attenuated line about Obama’s fake presidential seal didn’t work because nobody in the target audience really understood what was going on.

Sharp pivots - when a candidate takes a big hit, turns it around and throws it right back at his opponent with devastating impact - usually end up being “grand slam” debate moments. Learning to pivot means you’ve learned how to win a debate.

* It was kinda hilarious that cable commentators and major political bloggers went from calling the debate a draw before the snap polls were released, to attempting to explain why Obama won after the polls were made available. It should be funny to see how they react if polls show a different story in the coming days.

I thought McCain had a very strong, empathetic start with his opening remarks that followed Obama’s stiff, talking-points opening. My thinking was that if McCain and Obama continued along those lines, McCain would win the debate in a walk. But it quickly became clear to me as I watched (and I have the text messages to my intern to prove it) that McCain’s entire demeanor radically changed. Angry, impatient, refusing to look Obama in the eye while leaning away from him and staring uncomfortably off to stage right.

At one point, while Obama was saying something serious that McCain disagreed with, I could actually hear McCain scribbling furiously on his note pad. Not a good thing.

Temperament is an all-important aspect of any character debate. And “character” is central to most of those who can’t make up their minds until the very end. They don’t vote for parties, they say, they vote for the person. McCain failed that personality test on a grand scale.

Yet, almost no commentator made mention of McCain’s rather odd behavior until after the first snap poll was released. Either they were too polite to say anything, or too clueless to notice.

- Posted by Rich Miller   Comments Off      


« NEWER POSTS PREVIOUS POSTS »
* Janus apparently no longer loves his state job, hires on with Illinois Policy Institute
* Reader comments closed for the weekend
* Pritzker meets with moms who've lost their kids to street violence, police shootings
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Fundraiser list
* Question of the day
* Caption contest!
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Campaign stuff: Morrison; Ives; Skillicorn; Nybo; Rooney; Curran; Breen; Frese
* "And admit that the waters/Around you have grown"
* A tiny bit of good news from Moody's
* Proft files suit so his independent expenditure committee can coordinate with campaigns after caps busted
* Cook shifts governor's race from "Toss Up" to "Lean Democrat" - Third-party candidates "the tipping point"
* Unsolicited advice
* The impasse and the damage done
* Entire IPHCA executive committee resigns, lawyer let go after racism controversy
* Chicago to get its first public law school, but is it a wise move?
* Doom and gloom abounds, but a new pension idea emerges
* Another lawsuit filed in Quincy veterans' home deaths: "For a year and a half, he loved that place. And it killed him"
* *** LIVE COVERAGE ***
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today's edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)
* Yesterday's stories

Support CapitolFax.com
Visit our advertisers...

...............

...............

...............

...............
<


Loading


* SVM EDITORIAL: Term limits: Beware of unintende.....
* McDaniel-Hale: The decision to smoke is a perso.....
* In Bellwood, Fritz Kaegi Blasts 'Machine Po.....
* Barickman Cautious About Trump Impact on IL Ele.....
* Democrats try to rebuild the state party from t.....
* New law better protects DCFS workers..
* Illinois Makes Its IT Department a Permanent Fi.....
* Dyslexia guidebook bill signed into law..
* Naperville Now 07-20-18..
* Is Pritzker the beginning of the end for Madigan?..


* EXCHANGE: A family has deep roots in baseball and softball
* EXCHANGE: For 122 years, observatory has demystified the sky
* Northern Illinois man convicted of murdering sister-in-law
* Man cleared of murder has trouble depositing compensation
* UI seeks to improve access for transfer students
* Watch cop revive man during fentanyl scare at Illinois strip club
* AP FACT CHECK: Kansas not the ‘sanctuary state’ of Midwest
* Woman injured by lightning strike at Country Thunder
* UI seeks improving access for transfer students
* Cases handled by indicted 2 Chicago officers being dropped

* Marginal amounts of legionella detected in Stratton Building
* Moody's gives Illinois finances a 'stable' outlook
* Illinois Army National Guard soldiers return home
* Marginal amouts of legionella detected in Stratton Building
* Under the Dome Podcast: Gun bills, Quincy, Trump-Putin reaction
* Incumbents hold big fundraising leads in central Illinois legislative races
* Springfield man wins Illinois State Police logo contest
* Rauner 'deeply troubled' by Trump's Helsinki comments
* Rauner signs bill to ease physician assistant hiring
* Bill taking Illinois out of voter registration system vetoed

* Home Run Pizza CEO dies
* Home Run Inn Pizza CEO dies
* Your neighbor isn't a business
* The future of the U.S. looks a lot like Chicago
* Cook County board moves to prevent repeat of pop tax fiasco


* POT TOPICS: Weed, hemp bills stacked up on Rauner’s desk; Pot IPO raises $150M
* Police officer injured in crash in Logan Square
* Man, 25, shot in Gresham
* Police: Man dies in fatal car crash in Washington Park
* 1 killed, 6 wounded Friday in city gun violence
* Man in critical condition in West Garfield Park shooting
* Man, 34, in critical condition in Humboldt Park shooting
* Unpublished notes from ’94 meeting with Mandela donated to Northwestern library
* James Shields sharp, but Sox’ offense fails to deliver in loss to Mariners
* Girl found, returned to family after going missing from McKinley Park


* Pool access leads to pilfered property
* Man found dead in fiery Washington Park crash
* White Sox strike early but can't solve Wade LeBlanc in 3-1 loss to Mariners
* Fan who survived heart attack at Wrigley Field returning to thank Cubs employee who helped him
* Democratic socialism surging in the age of Trump
* Pelosi: Putin isn't welcome in Congress
* Manny Machado shines in Dodgers debut as LA beats Brewers 6-4
* Sanders and new Democratic star Ocasio-Cortez wade into GOP-heavy Kansas
* Ticket mix-up put family on ill-fated Missouri tourist boat; vigils held for 17 dead
* GOP senators cave to Trump, drop attempt to punish telecom giant ZTE


» The Week in Review: Public Outcry Over Police-Involved Shooting
» ‘Ali: A Life’; Sexual Harassment In Bars; NPR’s Sam Sanders
» WBEZ’s Chicago and Illinois News Roundup: July 20, 2018
» UIC To Acquire John Marshall Law School, Creating The City’s First Public Law School
» State Week: Russia Reactions, Gun Laws, Campaign Cash
» #660 PJ Morton & Opinions on Drake
» July 19, 2018 - Full Show
» Berwyn Homeowners Squeezed By School District Miscalculation
» How Conservatism Won In Wisconsin; Illinois Election Security; Special Olympics 50th Anniversary
» Illinois Prison Officials Accused of Abusing Transgender Inmate


* Scott Reeder: Understanding is what journalism should be about
* Counterpoint: His pick is bad news indeed for health care, women, consumers and unions
* Point: Kavanaugh is truly a 'judge's judge' and precisely what our nation needs
* Eugene Robinson: The 'deep state' stands between us and the abyss
* Marginal amounts of legionella detected in Stratton Building
* Moody's gives Illinois finances a 'stable' outlook
* Illinois Army National Guard soldiers return home
* Marginal amouts of legionella detected in Stratton Building
* Under the Dome Podcast: Gun bills, Quincy, Trump-Putin reaction
* Bernard Schoenburg: Bourne, Clark clash over missed votes


* Opening hearts and minds: Christopher's Garden supports those in need
* Cyclists honoring fallen officers stop in Twin Cities
* Eureka Library expands genealogy, history resources
* Births for Saturday, July 21, 2018
* Carolene Powenski
* Mary Imhoff
* Wayne Rex Linck
* Doris Rose Heiple
* SIUC to host observation of Mars, which is at its closest, brightest in 15 years
* Illinois Lottery drawing for FRIDAY, JULY 20


* Cespedes returns, Familia may depart and Mets beat Yanks 7-5
* Indians get a Hand when new relievers join them after break
* Firefighters: Minimal chemical involvement in Elgin water treatment facility blaze
* Keuchel's no-hit bid ends in 7th on nearly-caught liner
* Price, Red Sox win again by blanking Tigers 1-0

* Illinois Department of Public Health Conti...
* 7-year-old Matteson girl goes to Washingto...
* Why Joe Crowley's Loss Could Be Good N...
* What we know about Russia's election h...
* Ernst: President Trump 'not upholding ...
* House Democrats Reveal 2018's Slogan: ...
* House Dems, with Bustos' help, unveil ...
* Limbaugh laughs at Dems' midterm motto...
* Democrats Announce New Slogan for Midterms...
* 'For the People': House Democrats&...

* How area members of Congress voted on voti......
* Family reunifications: 450 down, roughly 1......
* Ballot security battle heats up already ho......
* In IL-6, Roskam and Casten clash over elec......
* GOP accuses Dems of stalling Kavanaugh aft......

* Bernie Sanders, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez B......
* How area members of Congress voted on voti......
* Will Route 66 become a National Historic T......
* Tammy Duckworth Wishes She Wasn'......
* Alton Fire Department awarded $227273 grant...

* The sad state of the sandwich at Logan Square deli Rosie’s Sidekick
* Rahm and Rauner's phony Ryan feud: Don’t be fooled by the Twitter barbs
* There’s always an issue we can quarrel over with regards to city street names
* Lies, Damned Lies and Rankings
* 5 things every college must know about cloud computing
* Accreditor clears path for $1.9 billion Strayer-Capella merger
* EdX Survey Finds That about 1/3 of Americans Ages 25 – 44 Have Completely Changed Fields Since Starting Their First Job Post-College
* Creatively nudging faculty members to expand use of immersive technology
* Making Learning Without Borders a Reality
* Weiss Hospital To Get New Owner


* IDPH Investigation Continues As Foodborne Illnesses Increase
* Gov. Rauner signs HB 5611
* Summit for Success: IDOT providing tools, opportunity for disadvantaged businesses
* Illinois Payrolls Jump +18,100
* Liquor Control Commission Underage Compliance Report for Cook County

  
* Galaxy Note9 shows up in renders in Lilac Purple
* Key takeaways from Singapore healthcare data breach
* OxygenOS 5.0.4 for OnePlus 3/3T brings July security patch and camera improvements
* Designers, don’t be afraid to let robots design
* Pocket Nightcap: Buy the damn MacBook Pro (stick with me here)
* Xiaomi: 5 things you didn’t know about the Apple of the East
* US Senate abandons ZTE sanctions as NDAA passes without such provisions

* Shields outdueled in stellar night on mound
* Mariners beat White Sox, get back on winning track
* Mariners 3, White Sox 1: New half, same loss
* Mariners 3, White Sox 1: New half, same loss
* Abreu happy to talk about ASG, not rumors
* Servais, Mariners living the dream as White Sox season a nig...
* LeBlanc, relievers shut down White Sox in Mariners' 3-1 win


Main Menu
Home
Illinois
YouTube
Pundit rankings
Obama
Subscriber Content
Durbin
Burris
Blagojevich Trial
Advertising
Updated Posts
Polls

Archives
July 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004

Blog*Spot Archives
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005

Syndication

RSS Feed 2.0
Comments RSS 2.0
WordPress




Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller