Friday, July 07, 2006

The debate was, as I expected, a non-mover. Neither Lieberman nor Lamont would have persuaded any undecided voters with their performances. Lieberman certainly showed a greater command of the issues, but one might expect that from a three-term Senator.

Here's a brief breakdown of the debate:

Joe's Biggest Victory: Repeatedly pointing out instances and ways in which he has opposed President Bush's agenda, his occassional support of which is the centerpiece of Lamont's campaign.

Ned's Biggest Victory: Bringing himself back from the edge of what looked like a nervous breakdown to restate his arguments against Lieberman.

Joe's Biggest Failure: Coming off somewhat like Al Gore did in his first Prez debate in 2000.

Ned's Biggest Failure: Failing to advance his case for election in either of the ways that matter - he didn't land any sharp punches against Lieberman, and he did not produce an image of himself to voters.

I think that this debate probably stiffened the support of those backing each candidate, and maybe moved a couple dozen voters in one direction or another. I can't wait to see what the first post-debate polls say, but I'm guessing that they will show little movement from before. And if this slowed the exponential momentum that I admit Lamont has had for the past few weeks, that alone would be a great victory for Lieberman.


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