Looking at the Vegas debate from the outside

by Datechguy | October 19th, 2011

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Looking at the Vegas debate from the outside

Last month in Maine with­out my com­puter I noticed the incred­i­ble between what actu­ally takes place and what the media reports. Last night due to a last minute migra­tion to a TV less room and the dis­trac­tions of a rather excit­ing ses­sion of Age of Mythol­ogy with my friends I had that feel­ing again get­ting only brief clips of the debate dur­ing the night and wak­ing up to MSNBC and CNN analy­sis to go on top of the live­blog of Stacy, Smitty and Wom­bat and Vodka Pun­dit.

If MSNBC is to be believed the most qual­i­fied can­di­date was not on the stage (Jon Hunts­man) and with the excep­tion of Rom­ney nobody belonged there, (Michael Steele cemented the wis­dom of those want­ing him out of the RNC chair­man­ship by not chal­leng­ing that sen­ti­ment) Mean­while on CNN Rom­ney Cain and Gin­grich were all targets.

So being sane and ratio­nal I checked on-​line and found there was one clear win­ner in last night’s debate. Ander­son Cooper

Pol­i­tics aside, as far as putting on a com­pelling debate, Cooper suc­ceeded there as well. The night moved quickly, a good spec­trum of top­ics were cov­ered, and Cooper man­aged to stay out of the way. This was the can­di­dates’ show, and that’s the way it should be.

This was also the first debate in recent mem­ory where the mod­er­a­tor didn’t sin­gle out a can­di­date for elim­i­na­tion. One of the most frus­trat­ing parts of these nights in the past has been watch­ing the mod­er­a­tor act like a big game hunter look­ing for a tro­phy by zero­ing in on a Rom­ney, Perry or Cain for destruc­tion. Cooper was right to throw a jump ball marked “9 – 9-​9″ to open the show, but there was lot of blood on the floor tonight and it came from more than one per­son — which is how it’s sup­posed to be.

As for the debate itself I found excel­lent analy­sis at Legal Insur­rec­tion:

Perry the win­ner not because he was so much bet­ter than the oth­ers, but because he was so much bet­ter than he was pre­vi­ously. He may have revi­tal­ized his cam­paign tonight. Cain was dam­aged, but not fatally. Rom­ney was okay, held his ground. Newt and San­to­rum both good, stood out. Bach­mann pretty good also. Ron Paul an outlier.

Bar­bara Espinosa is a big Perry backer so I’d like to hear her opin­ion but that will have to wait for her to win her bat­tle against the hor­ri­ble Hotel Wi-​Fi but I think Byron York found the sin­gle most impor­tant moment of the night: Perry’s Coun­ter­at­tack on Rom­ney con­cern­ing ille­gal immi­gra­tion:

Rick, again, Rick, I’m speak­ing,” Rom­ney said. “I’m speak­ing, I’m speak­ing, I’m speak­ing. You get 30 sec­onds. This is the way the rules work here…Anderson?”

By the time Rom­ney appealed to CNN mod­er­a­tor Ander­son Cooper for help, Rom­ney seemed flus­tered, almost fran­tic. “Would you please wait?” he said to Perry. “Are you just going to keep talking?”

That was a moment of pure weak­ness. Let me explain some­thing to the Gov­er­nor; unlike Mass­a­chu­setts where the left didn’t worry so much about a gov­er­nor they could over­ride at will, the boys in Wash­ing­ton will not play by any rules and nobody from the MSM will come to your aid.

Even worse for Mitt this made for TV moment for an attack ad:

We went to the com­pany, and we said, ‘Look, you can’t have any ille­gals work­ing on our prop­erty,’” Rom­ney said. “I’m run­ning for office, for Pete’s sake, I can’t have ille­gals.” It wasn’t clear whether Rom­ney thought hir­ing ille­gals was bad in itself or whether he just thought it would look bad for a can­di­date pur­su­ing the Repub­li­can nom­i­na­tion for president.

I can see the “inde­pen­dent” ads now: In Demo­c­rat neigh­bor­hoods it will be played as a “hide the wet­backs” moment to ener­gize and anger the true believ­ers, in the GOP areas it will be played as “I can’t let peo­ple see me doing this” and will be played to sup­press turnout and pre­tend­ing it will not hap­pen will not do.

I think the debate helps Perry and Bach­mann and tweaks Cain slightly but In the short-​term like all the other debates the mem­o­ries will fade after a day, so we will get more of the same, a media that con­sid­ers Rom­ney Obama’s best chance ampli­fy­ing each gaffe a con­ser­v­a­tive makes in the race.

But be assured that the left know­ing they have to run Barack Obama against who­ever wins the nom­i­na­tion, should still be afraid, VERY afraid.

Update: Appar­ently in the spin Room Stacy reports, like in Dart­mouth, the press is still vot­ing Cain:

Ten weeks ago, when I fol­lowed Her­man Cain around to cam­paign events dur­ing his bus tour of Iowa, there were rarely more than two or three local reporters cov­er­ing him at each stop. When he arrived in the “spin room” in the base­ment of the Sands Expo Cen­ter last night, he was instantly swarmed by cam­era crews and reporters rep­re­sent­ing dozens of news agen­cies from around the world. The pun­dits must now recal­cu­late their esti­mates of Cain, the contender.

I pre­dict peo­ple will still be talk­ing Cain when the next debate comes around. Exit Ques­tion: At what point does Rick Perry start spend­ing money going after Cain.

Update 2: Do you want to smile con­cern­ing the debate? Read Sun­shine State Sarah.

Last month in Maine without my computer I noticed the incredible between what actually takes place and what the media reports. Last night due to a last minute migration to a TV less room and the distractions of a rather exciting session of Age of Mythology with my friends I had that feeling again getting only brief clips of the debate during the night and waking up to MSNBC and CNN analysis to go on top of the liveblog of Stacy, Smitty and Wombat and Vodka Pundit.

If MSNBC is to be believed the most qualified candidate was not on the stage (Jon Huntsman) and with the exception of Romney nobody belonged there, (Michael Steele cemented the wisdom of those wanting him out of the RNC chairmanship by not challenging that sentiment) Meanwhile on CNN Romney Cain and Gingrich were all targets.

So being sane and rational I checked on-line and found there was one clear winner in last night’s debate. Anderson Cooper

Politics aside, as far as putting on a compelling debate, Cooper succeeded there as well. The night moved quickly, a good spectrum of topics were covered, and Cooper managed to stay out of the way. This was the candidates’ show, and that’s the way it should be.

This was also the first debate in recent memory where the moderator didn’t single out a candidate for elimination. One of the most frustrating parts of these nights in the past has been watching the moderator act like a big game hunter looking for a trophy by zeroing in on a Romney, Perry or Cain for destruction. Cooper was right to throw a jump ball marked “9-9-9″ to open the show, but there was lot of blood on the floor tonight and it came from more than one person — which is how it’s supposed to be.

As for the debate itself I found excellent analysis at Legal Insurrection:

Perry the winner not because he was so much better than the others, but because he was so much better than he was previously. He may have revitalized his campaign tonight. Cain was damaged, but not fatally. Romney was okay, held his ground. Newt and Santorum both good, stood out. Bachmann pretty good also. Ron Paul an outlier.

Barbara Espinosa is a big Perry backer so I’d like to hear her opinion but that will have to wait for her to win her battle against the horrible Hotel Wi-Fi but I think Byron York found the single most important moment of the night: Perry’s Counterattack on Romney concerning illegal immigration:

“Rick, again, Rick, I’m speaking,” Romney said. “I’m speaking, I’m speaking, I’m speaking. You get 30 seconds. This is the way the rules work here…Anderson?”

By the time Romney appealed to CNN moderator Anderson Cooper for help, Romney seemed flustered, almost frantic. “Would you please wait?” he said to Perry. “Are you just going to keep talking?”

That was a moment of pure weakness. Let me explain something to the Governor; unlike Massachusetts where the left didn’t worry so much about a governor they could override at will, the boys in Washington will not play by any rules and nobody from the MSM will come to your aid.

Even worse for Mitt this made for TV moment for an attack ad:

“We went to the company, and we said, ‘Look, you can’t have any illegals working on our property,'” Romney said. “I’m running for office, for Pete’s sake, I can’t have illegals.” It wasn’t clear whether Romney thought hiring illegals was bad in itself or whether he just thought it would look bad for a candidate pursuing the Republican nomination for president.

I can see the “independent” ads now: In Democrat neighborhoods it will be played as a “hide the wetbacks” moment to energize and anger the true believers, in the GOP areas it will be played as “I can’t let people see me doing this” and will be played to suppress turnout and pretending it will not happen will not do.

I think the debate helps Perry and Bachmann and tweaks Cain slightly but In the short-term like all the other debates the memories will fade after a day, so we will get more of the same, a media that considers Romney Obama’s best chance amplifying each gaffe a conservative makes in the race.

But be assured that the left knowing they have to run Barack Obama against whoever wins the nomination, should still be afraid, VERY afraid.

Update: Apparently in the spin Room Stacy reports, like in Dartmouth, the press is still voting Cain:

Ten weeks ago, when I followed Herman Cain around to campaign events during his bus tour of Iowa, there were rarely more than two or three local reporters covering him at each stop. When he arrived in the “spin room” in the basement of the Sands Expo Center last night, he was instantly swarmed by camera crews and reporters representing dozens of news agencies from around the world. The pundits must now recalculate their estimates of Cain, the contender.

I predict people will still be talking Cain when the next debate comes around. Exit Question: At what point does Rick Perry start spending money going after Cain.

Update 2: Do you want to smile concerning the debate? Read Sunshine State Sarah.

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