Thursday, September 30, 2004

Debate analysis

Short answer: Kerry wins on style, Bush on substance.

It was the best I've seen Kerry. He came across strong and presented well. The debate rules allowed him to skirt specifics and rely primarily on general assertions, and he took advantage.

The President seemed a bit hesitant at times, although he was able to present better-backed arguments.

On the split screen shots, Bush often looked to be frowning as Kerry spoke, while Kerry did a lot of nodding while Bush talked. Both came off badly in those shots, in my opinion.

The real story of the debate is the opportunities Bush missed to nail Kerry, to wit:

1. Kerry complained about the troops body armor, which was part of the $87 billion he voted against. I think Bush mentioned it later, but not immediately.

2. Kerry keeps up his claim to bring in mysterious new allies. Which new allies, Senator? Be specific.

3. Kerry declared he would stop the bunker-buster bomb program. Bush should have pointed out they are designed as a deterrent against the deep bunkers some of the bad guys plan to hide in, Kim Jong Il as one example.

4. Kerry kept mentioning the Afghans we used at Tora Bora, claiming they let Osama slip away. That was a call by the field commander on the ground. Would Kerry be micromanaging military decisions from the White House?

5. Bush should have pointed out that he proposed troop shift from Europe would free up nearly two full divisions, the same amount Kerry proposes to create - BUT at no additional cost, while Kerry's plan will cost many billions from now on.

6. Bush should have pointed out that the process we are following on Dafur is the policy Kerry wanted us to follow on Iraq, and it is getting nowhere fast in the UN.

On balance, I think it was about even. How that plays out with the voters is hard to say. Kerry's style was good, and Bush's failure to rebut all Kerry's fallacies makes his substance win less . . . substantial.

If Kerry needed a big win, he didn't get it. But maybe he did well enough to earn a second look from some voters.


Blogger wbrant said...

Hey, you have a great blog here! I'm definitely going to bookmark you!

I have a affiliate exchange program traffic site. It pretty much covers affiliate exchange program traffic related stuff.

Come and check it out if you get time :-)

October 20, 2005 at 10:50 PM  
Blogger Swimming Freak said...

Fire, Water, VELVET TOUCH Washington
. I take VELVET TOUCH Washington
. :)

October 28, 2005 at 5:02 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home