Posts Tagged ‘debates’

Live blogging the third McCain/ Obama debate

Wednesday, October 15th, 2008

Live blogging the debate. I won’t be making new posts — I’ll update the content of this post; so just keep refreshing if you want to see it as I go.

I’ll be using C-Span Debate Hub for video clips and such. I’ll be learning their system on the fly, so we’ll see what happens there….

8:03 PM — Here we go…

8:04 PM — McCain — “Americans are victims of greed on Wall Street and Washington DC.” Blames Fannie and Freddie. “we need to put the home owners first — acknowledges people who _were_ responsible with their mortgages….

8:06 PM — Obama — tax cut for people making less than $200k. I thought it was $250k…?
Need to fix energy policy, fix education

8:08 PM — McCain — Joe Wurtzelbach confronted Obama — why is Obama going to tax his small business? McCain says Obama will increase taxes on small business.

8:09 PM — There’s the tax cut for 95% of “working families”. McCain, please address that that many already don’t pay taxes.

8:11 PM — McCain — Obama to Joe the plumber: “we need to spread the wealth around”. The basis of Obama’s policy is class warfare — again “We need to spread the wealth around.” McCain making great hay of “Joe the Plumber”

8:13 PM — Obama: “Nobody likes taxes” McCain: “If nobody likes taxes, let’s not raise them on anyone.”

8:14 PM — Moderator– “_both_ of you will increase the deficit”

8:17 PM — McCain “We have to have nuclear power”
What would I cut? “I would have an across-the-board spending freeze.”

8:18 PM — McCain would cut ethanol subsidies. He would fight for line-item veto.

8:20 PM — McCain “Senator Obama, I am not President Bush. If you wanted to run against President Bush, you should have run four years ago.” Yeah!

8:22 PM — McCain — Obama, name one time you stood up against your own party.
Obama: I supported tort reform. “I have a history of reaching across the aisle.”

8:24 PM — Obama: “On economic policy you propose eight more years of the same thing”
McCain: “Your argument of standing up to your party isn’t very convincing.”

8:25 PM — Moderator: Both your campaigns have gotten nasty. Are you willing to sit here and look each other in the face and say those things?
McCain: Obama refused my requests to sit down and to town hall meetings. That has affected the tone of the campaigns.
I have repudiated out-of bounds remarks by Republicans. Obama has Not repudiated out-of-bounds from his supporters. Obama supporter Senator John Lewis compared McCain to racist George Wallace.

8:27 PM — McCain — “Obama has spent more money on negative advertising than any candidate in history”

8:28 PM — Obama: “We expect presidential campaigns to be tough.” “100% of your ads, John, have been negative.”
Tonight’s discussion — “that’s the stuff that a campaign should be made of.”

8:29 PM — Obama is beating the drum “four more years of failed economic policy.” He is latching on to the economy and trying to lay it at McCain’s feet.

8:30 PM — McCain — your ads attacking my health care policy are lies. Ditto immigration. Heh — “Joe the plumber and “spreading the wealth around” again.

8:32 PM — Obama: All Americans see is a tit-for-tat.

8:34 PM — McCain brought up the tee-shirts….

8:35 PM — Obama –We have to talk about the issues and not try to paint each other as bad people.

8:36 PM — McCain — Ayers, ACORN “perpetrating perhaps the greatest voter fraud in the country’s history”

8:37 PM — Obama: Ayers is a professor of education in Chicago. he is not involved in my campaign, and will not advise me in the White House. ACORN: “apparently” they were paying people to register people, and they were just filling out forms.

8:39 PM — Obama: “the fact that [Ayers] is the center of your campaign says more about your campaign than it says about me”

8:39 PM — McCain: “My campaign is about getting the economy back on track.” “I’m not going to raise taxes the way Senator Obama wants to raise taxes in a tough economy.”

8:41 PM — Why is your running mate better than the other guy’s?

Obama: Biden will fight for the little guy. Has good foreign policy record. 1994 Crime Bill. Violence Agains Women Act. “After eight years of failed policies…” On key issue Biden “has always been on the right side”

8:42 PM — McCain: Palin is role model to women. She is a reformer. She has fought her own party. Faced down oil companies. $40 billion pipeline supplying lower 48. “Breath of fresh air, sweep[ing] out the old boys’ network”. She understands autism and such, and will reach out to those families.

8:44 PM — “Do you think she’s qualified?”
Obama: “That’s up to the American people.” Nice dodge. If we have an “across the board spending freeze” we can’t address things like autistic children.

8:45 PM — McCain: Biden has been wrong much of the time. He wanted to split Iraq into three countries. McCain: Obama “says ‘we have to spend more; we have to spend more’. Why do we always have to spend more?”

8:46 PM — Q: Give a specific number: by how much can we reduce our dependence on foreign oil?

8:47 PM — McCain: Nukes Baby! We can stop buying from China and Middle East, and buy from Canada. In 8-10 years we can eliminate our dependence on the parts of the world that threaten our country.

8:48 PM — Obama: In 10 years we can eliminate our importing from parts of the world that are our enemies.

Both of them are goofy — in world market, oil is oil is oil — doesn’t matter where you buy it, it’s a commodity and is a wash in the grand scheme of things….

8:50 PM — Obama: “I believe in free trade, but…”
President needs to advocate American businesses.

8:51 PM — McCain: Look at Obama’s words — “we will ‘look at’ offshore drilling.” We can drill right now! NICE.

8:53 PM — McCain — O has never traveled south of our borders. “Free trade with Columbia is a no-brainer”

8:54 PM — Obama: We need to stand up to other countries (on trade)
Auto industry — car dealerships are closing because of the financial crisis. Detroit was slow to make efficient vehicles. Gov’t should “make them” make the right cars.

8:55 PM — McCain — Obama doesn’t want free trade with our best ally in Latin America, but wants to sit down and negotiate with Hugo Chavez.

“Obama wants to restrict trade and raise taxes — the last president to do that was Herbert Hoover, and that took use from a recession to a deep depression.”

8:57 PM — Health insurance: Obama’s plan — you can keep the insurance you have if you want. If not, you can buy into the same plan that senators have. “We’re going to make sure to manage preventive diseases such as diabetes.”

8:59 PM — McCain — $5,000 tax credit for health care. Joe the Plumber again. Joe — if you don’t get Obama’s health plan, Obama will fine you.

9:00 PM — Obama: Joe — here’s your fine: Zero. McCain: “Zero???” Obama: I exempt small businesses. Only fine big businesses “that can afford it”. McCain’s $5,000 credit, but average health insurance plan costs $12,000

9:03 PM — McCain — “Hey Joe, you’re rich — congratulations” Joe the Plumber wants to buy the business he works for, and would qualify for Obama’s fine.
People would get their employer’s health plan, PLUS the $5,000 credit. “A change to choose their own futures”

9:05 PM — McCain: “Senator Government… er… Senator Obama” wants government to choose your health plan

9:06 PM — Roe v. Wade — could you nominate someone to the court who disagrees with you?

McCain — I have never imposed a litmus test. I would nominate based on qualifications. McCain was part of the “gang” that broke gridlock on nominations. Sen Obama voted against Justice Roberts based on that they didn’t meet his ideology.

9:08 PM — Obama: “It’s true we shouldn’t impose a litmus test.” One of use will be probably making an appointment, and “Roe vs. Wade hangs in the balance” “I believe the Constitution has a right to privacy in it, and should not be subject to state [decisions]”.

Senator Obama, would you please tell me WHERE in the Constitution it says “right to privacy”???

Obama talking about equal pay for women — the courts need to stand up for these kinds of things and he would appoint judges that would do so.

McCain “You would waive the statue of limitation, and that would be a trial lawyer’s dream”

9:12 PM — McCain — How do you vote “present” on a law to protect the life of a baby that is born during a failed abortion?

Obama: “It’s not true” There was such legislation — it “would have undermined Roe v. Wade”

“I’m willing to support a ban on late-term abortion” if it has exception for health of mother.

“We need to prevent pregnancies.” “Nobody is pro-abortion.”

McCain: Again look at Obama’s wording: The “health of the mother” is commonly stretched to mean just about anything. McCain has a few times pointed out Obama’s carefully chosen “eloquence” — i.e he parses words to conceal what he’s really saying.

9:17 PM — Education
Obama — a balance between “more money and reform — we need both”.

“We need to make college affordable.”
Hey Obama – as with housing, if government gives the money away PRICES WILL GO UP!

McCain: it’s “the civil rights issue of the 21st century” Free choice is the key issue. Reward and promote good teachers. “Give parents the same choice that Sen. Obama and Cindy & I had” “Throwing money at the problem is not the answer.” Support Teach for America. Adjust student loan eligibility to inflation.

9:21 PM — Suddenly Obama likes Bush — “No Child Left Behind” was good, but not funded.

Obama likes charter schools & needs to get rid of bad teachers — agrees with McCain on these. Disagrees on vouchers.

9:23 PM — McCain — No Child was a great beginning — we should re-authorize. Spending more money is not always the answer. “Head Start program is not doing what it should be doing.”
“It’s a system that cries out for accountability.” “Vouchers… are a good and workable system.”

Obama on vouchers: “The data doesn’t show that it solves the problem” In Washington DC, there were only 2,000 vouchers — leaving the rest of the parents without.

9:26 PM — McCain mocks Obama: “Because there are not enough vouchers, we shouldn’t do it, even though it’s working… Got it.”

(McCain has been smiling a lot tonight. Heh.)

9:30 PM — Obama: “Washington’s unwillingness to tackle the hard issues over decades” has lead to the financial problems. Huh??? Again with the “failed policies of [Bush].”

9:32 PM — ABC Announcer: “A little over an hour tonight was devoted to Joe the Plumber” LOL
Joe “the plumber” Wurtzelbacher (sp?) is a real person.

Live Blogging the VP Debate

Thursday, October 2nd, 2008

(missed the first couple minutes….)

8:10 PM: Notable that Palin is looking at the camera while Biden is looking off camera — reverse of the McCain/Obama match.

8:12 PM: Hey Biden — it wasn’t deregulation

8:13 PM: Excellent response from Palin RE taxes & who raises them.

8:15 PM: Palin never did directly address the deregulation charge — a mistake. Hopefully she’ll get it in later.

8:17 PM: Biden says 95% will get a tax cut — presumably that includes the 40% who already don’t pay any….

8:19 PM: Biden: “We don’t call that ‘redistribution’, we call that ‘fairness'”.

8:21 PM: Hey Biden – the question wasn’t which of your opponent’s promises you weren’t going to implement — it was which of YOUR promises you wouldn’t implement

8:22 PM: Biden finally found the camera. Oops, nevermind.

8:23 PM: Palin has a bad tendency to answer questions that weren’t asked. Respond to the question posed.

8:24 PM: Palin just pointed out that she hasn’t said promised much in five weeks…??? Then named some specifics.

8:25 PM: Biden — No, Palin did NOT impose a “windfall profits” tax in Alaska. The people have oil rights that were being withheld through corruption in government. She fixed the corruption and put the taxes back up to a normal rate.

8:28 PM: Biden — When Obama and I voted opposite sides of a bill, it was glass half empty/glass half full.

8:31 PM: Palin — climate change is real, not necessarily man-made. Encourages “clean[ing] up this planet”. First gov to form an environmental cabinet. Need an “all of the above approach”.

8:32 PM: Biden — global warming man made or not is “THE fundamental difference” between Obama/Biden and McCain/Palin. Global warming is “absolutely” caused by man. If we drill, it’ll take ten years before we see one drop of that. [Yes, but you’ve been saying that since the 80s….]

8:35 PM: Palin: “…Barack Obama and Senator O’Biden…” Heh.

8:35 PM: Palin supports capping carbon emissions

8:36 PM: Biden: The Constitution says that gay partners should have visitation rights in hospitals…. Huh?

8:38 PM: Palin: “Straight up, I do not support defining marriage as anything but between one man and one woman.”
Biden: Neither he nor Obama support gay marriage.
Does Palin agree with them? Yes.

[Update: Biden was playing semantic games here — I’ll try to find the exact quote again, but in essence, he does support it, but would use a word other than “marriage”.]

8:40 PM: Palin cites Biden calling out Obama on the war — good.
Palin nailed it on the war. “It would be a travesty if we were to quit now in Iraq.”

8:41 PM: Biden: On Iraq, Obama will do exactly what Bush is doing. Heh.

8:42 PM: Biden: “A fundamental difference… with John McCain there is no end to this war.”

8:43 PM: Palin: “We’ll know when we’re finished in Iraq when the Iraqi govt. can govern its people and when the Iraqi security forces can [protect their people].”

8:44 PM: Biden: McCain voted against funding the troops because it included a timeline. [Well… yeah.]

8:47 PM: Biden knows where Bin Laden is.

8:47 PM: Palin: Ahmadinejad “is not sane or stable”

8:49 PM: Palin: Sitting down with Ahmadinejad “beyond bad judgement”

8:50 PM: Biden: Obama did not say he would sit down with Ahmadinejad.

8:51 PM: Biden, Dude, diplomats meeting is waaaay different than presidents meeting. If the president meets with you, he gives you legitimacy.

8:53 PM: Biden: “Noone in the United States Senate has been a better friend to Israel than Joe Biden” (referring to himself in the third person)

8:53 PM: Apparently Obama and Biden predicted pretty much every single power shift in the entire Middle East.

8:54 PM: Palin is happy that she and Biden both love Israel

8:55 PM: Palin: “There have been huge blunders in this administration… as there are in every administration.”

8:56 PM: Biden is trying to paint McCain with a Bush-colored brush. “We will make a significant change…” (but no specifics)

8:57 PM: Palin can pronounce Ahmadinejad, but is having trouble with “Kim Jong Il”???

8:58 PM: Hey, Biden found the camera again.

8:59 PM: As Biden talks about all we did wrong in Afghanistan, this blogger’s wife points out we _did_ in Afghanistan what Democrats say we _should_ have done in Iraq. We pulled a lot of troops out of Afghanistan, while surging in Iraq. Now Biden presses that our commanding general says we should have had more troops in Afghanistan. Heh.

9:01 PM: Biden: “The American people have a stomach for success.” Yeah but Democrats don’t….

9:03 PM: Biden: “I don’t have a stomach for Genocide when it comes to Darfur.” …but apparently it’s okay in other places?

9:03 PM: Palin invokes John Kerry, saying Biden was “for [the war] before [he] was against it”

9:07 PM: Palin: McCain “will know how to win a war”

9:08 PM: Question regarding the VP being “a heartbeat away” from the Presidency. Hmmm… at whom was that targeted?

9:09 PM: Palin responds — mentioning ANWR: “[McCain] has never asked me to check my opinions at the door.” (She and McCain disagree on drilling in ANWR.)

9:10 PM: Biden plugs Home Depot. Also, Biden likes to run down lists of talking points. He’s done it on several questions.

9:11 PM: Palin: “Joe, there you go again…” She saw it too. Heh.

9:12 PM: Palin has winked twice recently — once at the camera and once at her dad in the audience.

9:14 PM: Palin is BIG on pushing energy independence.

9:14 PM: Biden: “On education I don’t know any program that John [McCain] is supporting.” Cool. I like the idea of fewer federal programs….

9:17 PM: Biden: “Cheney has been the most dangerous vice president … in America’s history”

9:18 PM: In hindsight, you could’ve made a good drinking game out of all the times Palin mentions “energy independence”

9:20 PM: Now it’s Biden answering questions that haven’t been asked. Here’s yet another talking point list, and a schpiel about his wife & family… responding to a question regarding charges that he’s undisciplined…?

9:22 PM: Palin is knocking her own party in (eventually) getting to McCain as “Maverick”

9:23 PM: Hey, Biden — Yes, McCain was a “maverick” on the war — he called for the surge before anyone else supported it. He was dead on.

9:25 PM: Biden crows of leading the charge against nominating Bork for the Supreme Court

9:27 PM: Biden says he never questions the motives of those he disagrees with — he questions their judgment.

9:28 PM: Palin has several times said (in various ways) that she respects Biden.

9:29 PM: Palin: I like to be able to answer questions without the filter of the mainstream media. Nice! / Palin has invoked Reagan more than once. / Palin has invoked the “middle class” several times.

9:30 PM: Palin and Biden either like each other, or are trying to out-polite each other. Smiles all around.

9:32 PM: Despite preemptive charges of bias, I believe the moderator did a good job. (She has written a book praising Obama — to be released on inauguration day)

9:34 PM: Here comes Palin’s entire family

Summary: Overall I think they both did pretty well. Palin had a bit of a slow start — she was visibly nervous, but reined it in fairly well. Biden was consistent overall, which bested Palin at the beginning, but fell behind as she found her stride. Overall I would have to say she won — especially as she was stronger at the end, which is more of what people will take away with them.