Thursday, October 2

even yet another debate prediction

Sullivan cites Anonymous Liberal:
What made the Couric interviews so devastating was Couric's tendency (which is actually rare among reporters) to ask follow up questions when she got a non-responsive answer. When Palin would filibuster, Couric would repeat the question or press her for specifics. That's what elicited her most embarrassing responses. But the format of the debate won't allow for those kind of follow up questions.

Palin can be as non-responsive as she pleases. Moreover, on at least half the questions, Biden will have to answer first, which will give Palin time to think about her answer and allow her to build off whatever Biden says. And finally, the questions aren't likely to be out of left field. There's a lot of ground to cover and not much time to do it, so it's very likely that all of the questions she'll be asked will have been anticipated by her coaches and she'll have set answers ready.
I think that's about right. I also think Couric's "gentle mauling" of Palin may go down in history as the highlight of her career.

Debates aren't a good way to get a sense of the candidates on their own merit. What they are decent for is seeing them side-by side for comparison & contrast.

But you don't audition for a presidential-level job by giving a good debate performance or indeed a good convention speech. You audition by demonstrating to voters that you have a clear enough grasp of the issues and how to perform the job. The rest is just a popularity & ideology contest.

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