I'm so glad to hear Mike McCurry pick up on what I thought was the biggest gaffe BushCo made. It was after Kerry outlined what needed to be done to protect the country and the first words out of BushCo's mouth were something like "I don't know how's he going to pay for all that." Mitchell and Scarborough are saying it won't matter, but I think they're wrong.
By the way, does Andrea Mitchell even pretend to be objective anymore?
Another meme that seems to be struggling to break the surface is how uncomfortable BushCo looked. Although Scarborough is making the point that "middle America" appreciates that affect. Which, lo and behold, is exactly the spin that chief BushCo strategist, Matthew Dowd is working like a madman in the spin room. That and the idea that Kerry appeared inconsistent tonight (a fantasy) is the extent of their spin. Let's see what shows up in the NYT tomorrow.
I'm posting my silly minute-by-minute reaction to the debate in the continuation of this post. Why not, right?
UPDATE: 10/1: I changed my mind and am moving the notes from the debate back up here because Mick was so nice to me in the comments. Also because reading though my notes may remind someone of something they forgot but really ticked them off. I read Mick's coverage and found three things I had missed. Many brains are better than a few. Did you, for instance, notice that C-SPAN adjusted their split screen so that BushCo appeared to be as tall as Kerry? I saw that in an Atrios comment from last night.
My Notes from the Debate:
Kerry won the handshake - no doubt about it.
But loses the advantage when he panders to storm-ravaged, plucky and perseverant Florida.
The AQ Khan network??? That's a new way to say "Pakistan."
Ten million Afghanis have registered to vote! Twice BushCo's said that.
Uh oh - Kerry is setting up the October Surprise for BushCo by mentioning Osama bin Laden.
My goodness, Kerry is ruthless. "Where do you want me to start?" (naming BushCo's misjudgments) "His campaign has a word for that." (changing his mind)
Update: This is the a good strategy for Kerry - BushCo can't function when he's angry and he's completely pissed off right now. It's 9:12pm.
9:13p - BushCo: pre-September 10th mentality?
9:15p - BushCo: we've got a plan to succeed in Iraq? cool - we should find out what that is.
9:16p - Kerry: I don't know if he sees what's happening there. - wow
9:20p - BushCo: How is Kerry going to pay to keep us safe?? That's a winning argument, jackass.
9:25p - Kerry speaks - BushCo starts scribbling furiously. Sniffing, drinking, drawing boxes on his paper. He's a mess.
9:28p - BushCo needs to flip his pad of paper over ! He's just got so many thoughts to scribble down.
9:30p - BushCo: That's totally absurd. So the gloves are completely off now, right?
9:32p - BushCo is saying we're gonna have so many summits! I can't wait for all those summits.
9:35p - Kerry is so calm and BushCo is practically hysterical. I hope America picks up on that.
9:39p - Kerry calls letting N.Korea get nuclear weapons a better example of mixed messages. He's so good at this.
9:40p - I think my husband is right when he says that there will be no more debates. They'll let BushCo have heart surgery before they put him up here again.
9:45p - BushCo's job is to provide comfort to the loved ones of the dead soldiers??
9:46p - I can't believe BushCo just said that life isn't precious to "the enemy."
9:48p - Someone told BushCo to hammer the "wrong war, wrong time, wrong place" line. It's losing whatever effect it had the first 17 times he said it.
9:51p - BushCo has done far worse than Gore every did with his sighs. He's making faces constantly.
9:55p - BushCo finally remembers Libya and thus says something new for the first time in 45 minutes.
10:00p - Oh my gosh - Kerry says the word of the president is no longer good enough around the world. And he does it in a way that doesn't make him look like a whiner.
10:02p - I knew BushCo would pick up on 'Global Test' - that'll be everywhere in a thirty minutes and in the lede of every paper tomorrow.
10:04p - Pennisula you stupid, stupid man - not "pennishula" This N.Korea answer is an absolute mess. Five party, six party talks - whatever, he's not a detail guy.
10:06p - You can bet that Kerry is right about embarassing the president of S. Korea. And that that was a very dangerous thing to have done. S. Korea thinks of N. Korea as their crazy uncle but they still love him.
10:08p - Kerry is explaining why we can't engage in Darfur. He says it's because we're overextended but it's also because we don't want a war with China, the remaining superpower in the world.
10:10p - Iran isn't BushCo's fault - it's Clinton's. BushCo looks especially weak and whiny when he claims that "it isn't my fault."
10:15p - BushCo bets the gracious daughters, Kerry raises him the wonderful wife! Well played, Senator Kerrry.
10:16p - BushCo uses "wilt" for the first time - but stupidly during one of the thirty second raps giving Kerry the immediate opportunity to say that he's never wilted OR wavered in his life.
10:19p - AQ Khan is a "proliferator out of Pakistan." That's clever. Almost as clever as "weapons of mass destruction related program activities."
10:22p - Leher asks BushCo if Putin is still his soulmate. He doesn't believe in checks and balances. It's possible that they are bigger soulmates as ever! But he calls him "Vladamur", which may tick him off. I wouldn't want to tick off Pooty Poot.