McCAIN BRINGS THE TESTOSTERONE
I watched the debate on CNN -- I'm addicted to that damn people meter at the bottom of the CNN screen, and it was obvious that McCain's snarliness was connecting with men, especially early on. Every hoary old GOP talking point -- about spending, Democrats, et cetera -- got the men going. But Obama, after a shaky start, did better with women.
It was McCain's strongest debate, but I'm not entirely sure he's going to be declared the winner in polls, and maybe not by much -- particularly because (as Paul Begala is saying even as I type) McCain just looked contemptuous and mean-spirited at all times. Not once was he capable of listening to an Obama answer graciously. That could hurt.
And that people meter? My favorite moment was during McCain's answer about Sarah Palin's qualifications: women didn't go for it, men really did ... until McCain said, "She'll be my partner." Then the men's graph dropped. The guys were thinking, "No! She's my partner, dammit!"
And what the hell was all that Colombia stuff about? I know McCain's campaign is full of people who've lobbied for the Colombia Free Trade Agreement on behalf of various business interest, but for crissakes, America doesn't care.
HOLY CRAP: From FiveThirtyEight.com:
11:02 EDT: [Nate] CNN poll from the tee-vee: Obama 58, McCain 31.
11:00 EDT: [Nate] CBS undecideds: Obama 53, McCain 22.
... 10:48 EDT: [Sean] Ohio undecideds on CNN hated Joe the plumber.
10:45 EDT: [Sean] Looks like the Luntz group [on Fox] went Obama. Greta van Sustererereren crestfallen....
But ... but ... but the entire punditocracy is telling me this was McCain's best debate! And Obama's weakest! You mean Joe Sixpack doesn't think an air of naked contempt for your opponent is presidential?
Oh, and independents at Media Curves give it to Obama, 60%-30%.