October 15, 2008

Obama Seals the Deal (Plus More French Debate Commentary)

Obama is a fast learner. After having been consistently out-debated by Hillary Clinton in the primaries, he's at last become comfortable with the format. Tonight he was clear, compelling, and compassionate.

Given his commanding lead, there were higher expectations of Obama, but he had the easier task: to reassure any remaining undecided voters that he is qualified for the job.  He demonstrated a mastery of issues big and small, in everything from his economic recovery plan to his support for the Peruvian Free Trade Agreement.

McCain was able to restrain his worst tics. Analyzing his performance in the previous debate, pollster and debate champion Matt Towery said, "it looks like John McCain is not receiving any professional training from coaches.... Nobody who is coaching McCain would tell him to say 'my friends.'" While tonight he was occasionally out of sorts and couldn't remember Michelle Obama's name, at least McCain laid off on "my friends."

His Ayers gambit failed though; Obama responded by saying that "Bill Ayers has become the centerpiece of John McCain's campaign" and put lie to the spurious charges.  But McCain's biggest problem wasn't his negativity or his failed attempts at humor, it's his policies which are stuck the 1960s, 70s and 80s.

As a result, it wasn't surprising that the snap polls all declared Obama the winner, making it four debates out of four for the Democrats.

So on to what you're really looking for: the French perspective. S is tired tonight so didn't have much commentary, but she shared a few thoughts:

On McCain's defense of Sarah Palin: "She's a role model to women—ha ha ha!  Ah, je me marre!  [I'm cracking up!] She saw corruption and said it can't go on but she's the one who's corrupt!  Ils font un belle équipe, ces deux la." [These two make a great team.]

On Joe the Plumber: "on s'en fous de ce mec qui veut racheter son business!"  [We could care less about that guy who wants to buy his business!]

The undecided voters in Ohio that CNN dial-tested seemed to agree.

By Will Friedman in Election '08 | Permalink  | 


Dude! You gotta translate the French comments for us provincial Americans.

Posted by: Eric | Oct 16, 2008 8:14:36 AM

By popular demand I've included the translations :)

Posted by: Will | Oct 16, 2008 10:56:48 PM

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