Friday, February 1, 2008

Thoughts on the California Democratic Debate

Posted by Teresa at 1:38 PM
So what was expected to be another slug fest turned out to be a civil
debate. I think we all know that Sen. Obama is clearly a great orator.
However, since the beginning I've never thought he has done well in
the debates. He did have decent a performance last night but he's still
lacking something. Take, for example, the question on immigration he
had a hard time answering it. Here's the clip:

The "scapegoating" part of the answer was absolutely right on but other
than that it lacked substance. If you notice when they give the question
to Sen. Clinton she says, "Well, let me start with the original question
because I think it deserves an answer." She's was right in calling him out
for not giving a specific solutions on immigration.

There was one question that I found demonstrated a naive and simplistic
view of the presidency. Here it is from CNN transcripts:
BLITZER: Senator Obama, I want you to respond, but also in the
context of this. A lot of Democrats remember the eight years of the
Clinton administration, a period of relative peace and prosperity,
and they remember it fondly.

Are they right? Should they be remembering those eight years with
My problem with that question is that it assumes the president has control
over peace and prosperity. I think people who don't agree with President
Bush's foreign policy and the Iraq War can at least reasonably agree that the
president had no control over world events when he entered office and we
could no longer afford to stay in peace time after the horrific attacks of Sept.
11, 2001. So I thought it was it was a ridiculous question.

And of course the question gave way for a swipe at President Bush from Sen.
Obama (as intended) because he certainly wasn't going to criticize former
President Bill Clinton with his wife right there. Here's his answer:
OBAMA: Well, I think there's no doubt that there were good things that
happened during those eight years of the Clinton administration. I think
that's undeniable.

Look, we're all Democrats. And, particularly, when looked through the lens
of the last eight years with George Bush, they look even better.

The audience laughed, of course, also intended.



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