View Full Version : MSNBC-Politico Republican Debate
W.E.B. Du Bois
09-08-2011, 02:23 AM
The debate can be watched here:
W.E.B. Du Bois
09-08-2011, 05:29 AM
My take on the debate:
Perry won. He exceeded expectations. He was expected to be boring, and perhaps unprepared and unpolished. He mostly was prepared and polished. He was not caught off guard by his outlandish statements in his book, nor by foreign policy questions. There were some delays with regards to climate change, but not much more than that. He came off as strong, aggressive and simple, which is what Republicans like.
Romney: He was a pinata, everybody took shots at Romney-care and so I'd say he lost ground just by the fact that everyone was bashing him. He gave his talking points, which is what he does and what you do when you're a liar and a hypocrite. He didn't come off terribly bad, but again lost just due to the fact that he was attacked so many times.
Gingrich: Acquitted himself well, but still unelectable and not taken seriously, and is old news.
Bachmann: A forgettable performance. We've heard her lines about repealing "Obamacare" many times before.
Cain: His 9-9-9 plan made me think that he resembles the "Rent Is Too Damn High Party" with its gimmicky ham-handed juvenile populism. His Chile plan answer was good, but he often used rhetoric which is not memorable.
Paul: Utterly insane. No more air traffic control, no more drug administration, no more war on drugs, and one of the craziest things you've ever heard at a debate: the border fence won't keep bad people out, it will keep you in!!!
Huntsman: Actually did fairly well with his aggression. Took dishonest cheapshots with his attacks on Obama's use of a teleprompter (the entire crew at Fox News and most Republican politicians use teleprompters). He would be the strongest candidate against Obama, but he's got that McCain streak in him, and the base hates McCain.
Santorum: Doesn't have any legs to stand on. Argues for political pragmatism, yet his biography was him getting trounced in a blue state.
Note: There is a debate about Perry being foolish/suicidal with his repeatedly calling Social Security a "Ponzi scheme". I don't know about that. I have seen the Republicans defy political gravity (in my opinion) with the Republicans in congress tied in polls with Democrats in congress. Personally, I can see the theoretical arguments in favor of changing Social Security and I could see voters buying his calling it a Ponzi scheme on the basis that it screws your kids, but that he won't abandon the people currently on it.
Perry is Bush on steroids in reality, but I think he can play a normal person once he's in a general election.
W.E.B. Du Bois
09-08-2011, 05:40 AM
With regards to electability, I'll say one thing for Perry. He activates the oh shit this guy scares the hell out of me response from liberals that would totally unify and galvanize the base. Any liberal that is disappointed by Obama would vote for him just out of fear of Perry alone. On the other hand, I think Perry really gets the evangelicals super-motivated, whereas they might be depressed voting for a Mormon.
Overall, as a Democrat I think Perry is the preferred opponent. He mirrors Bush, he's got some nice self-inflicted wounds ("Ponzi scheme"), and him slashing education spending. His close association with the Tea Party and the public's negative association with the Tea Party could be useful in painting him as the Tea Party candidate, which people may already understand to mean repeal of social programs and repeal of taxes on the rich.
W.E.B. Du Bois
09-08-2011, 06:48 PM
A consensus is taking shape from last night's GOP debate, and Mitt Romney should be pleased. He won or at least held his own in the eyes of most (but certainly not all). Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post pronounces him the winner for his "slow and steady" performance after a somewhat "shaky" start. Rick Perry came out aggressive but "seemed to lose focus" in the second half, while "Romney showed his experience and steadied himself as the proceedings wore on—repeatedly giving answers that sounded reasonable and, dare we say it, presidential." As for Michele Bachmann, she was a "non-entity," which puts her into the "loser" camp," writes Cillizza.
It's similar to Andrew Sullivan's assessment at his Daily Beast blog, in which he says Romney "kicked ass," while Perry "proved himself an extreme, inarticulate, incurious W clone" whose "rhetoric was off-key," especially on Social Security. Both Sullivan and Cillizza praise Jon Huntsman's performance: He finally looked like he belonged out there. At the National Journal, Ron Fournier names Romney and Perry as the winners, but wonders about the price. "The testy exchanges allowed Perry to cast himself as a conservative truth-teller and Romney to bill himself as the most electable GOP candidate," he writes. "In doing so, both men exposed each others’ political vulnerabilities and risked alienating independent voters who are looking for more civility in politics." Jonathan Chait at the New Republic is in the minority camp, naming Perry as the sole winner. He "established his alpha male style, and that impression will matter more than any position or statement he’s made."
I maintain that Perry won.
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