Because I was working last night I only got to hear about 25 min of the debate on the radio before coming home and watching the whole thing.
I did a twitter thread (accidentally in several parts during the night on my impressions of that 25 min then livetweeted my thoughts as I watched the debate making sure I didn’t see any social media so I could judge on what I saw.
I did it on twitter because I figured nobody would read a liveblog that’s three hours late. The full thread is here but here are the main points.
- The biggest question going into the debate was if Biden could function. He clearly could which means that his position on the ticket is secure, and that debate is over. That’s the good news for him, the bad news is that if either during the next debates or during interviews he slips back into “slo Joe” mode the question is going to be what happened? Did he just rise to the occasion as an Ezzard Charles in round 14 vs Marciano or was he drugged up for the debate.
- There was a big difference between watching the Debate and listening to it. Biden’s voice was pretty good and his comeback, while factually BS were not bad, but his appearance was terrible, particularly his eyes which jumped out at you. He also had a habit of looking down while the president was speaking which, while it might have been to consult or take notes made it look like he was out on his feet, sort of like an android being shut off to conserve power. I submit and suggest that if you were watching you could not help but notice that.
- All of that being said I really liked the back and forth and when they would go back and forth he usually held his own. I think that while Trump was and is superior in those things it’s the type of thing that brought him to life the most.
- After the debate I saw a lot of hitting of Chris Wallace but it seemed to me that while he did favor Biden slightly he clearly asked good questions and tough questions to both candidate and as stated he did allow them to free for all a bit which were in my opinion the best (and most entertaining) parts of the show.
- Yeah he was harder on Trump, at some points a lot harder, but the media’s always hard on Trump, so I judged him on that scale. The fact that he was also hard on Biden is the difference to me.
- As for President Trump he was, pretty much himself. I think he had a good debate and several huge hits. The Hunter Biden stuff was strong (Biden’s attempt to pivot to his other son was smart as was admitting the drug problem there). The democrat cities there was a big hit, but his best thing was the 47 year theme. I only heard it once on the radio not knowing that it was a reoccurring piece for him. That left a mark.
- The: “I’ve done more in 47 months that you have in 47 years” was the line of the night for him. That being said I think he passed up several open shots where he could have touted his actual record of accomplishments and instead used those moments to hit Biden. Particularly on the exchange about race. I’m also shocked that when he had the chance he didn’t bring up his peace deals. It was almost the Maricano / LaStrazza fight where he was punishing him rather than knocking him out.
- My final judgement. I think Trump won both on the radio or watching but on the radio he might have won (based on a twelve rounder) 118-110 but on TV he won 118-105 but either way it was clearly a 12 round decision not a knockout, although Andrew Sullivan (who endorsed Biden this week) may disagree
Update: Cue classic SNL