Debate Disaster – ‘What do you not know?’

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Presidential candidates McCain and Obama gave us a very boring debate last evening. There was nothing new, nothing exciting, no overt attacks but their actions and words were very telling.

Going in, Obama appeared to be the frontrunner, according to various polls. McCain has made recent slips and several were evident this evening. Both candidates were playing safe – and boring.

A republican reader emailed a comment that said “McCain blew it bad – missed a great and possibly the last real opportunity to take out Obama’s 3 big ticket items that he’s been harping on about from the start.”

Obama says McCain is “Same as Bush,” and it certainly looked like it this evening. The question is: is being like Bush as bad as being like Congress. McCain did take a stab at showing he didn’t always agree with Bush, but he could have done more.

Our reader says “McCain must defuse the Obama claims of 90% tie-ins with Bush – and it can be done by linking Obama to the Democrats in congress 100% of the time. Congress’ rating is lower than the President’s, and Congress is as much if not more responsible for the sad state of affairs.

On Oil: Obama said “…US has only 3% of world’s oil supply but uses 25% … import 75% of our oil…”

According to the Energy Information Administration, the US only imported 58% of the petroleum it used in 2007. Obama and his team are miximg numbers to make their case seem better, and they do us a disservice because these numbers remain in peoples’ memories. That makes it difficult to have a real discussion because some people will take those numbers at face value and then use them in arguments later. [ EIA ]

Interestingly, only 16% of the imported oil came from the Persian Gulf.

On Obama’s tax cut for 95%, the reader says numbers are deceiving because only 40+% of tax returns even had a tax liability and 50% of taxpayers pay 94% of all the income tax. 5% of the taxpayers paid about 54% of the taxes while having only 31% of the income. 1% of taxpayers pay 34% of individual income taxes.

On the question of what do you not know, our republican reader says McCain had the opportunity of a lifetime, but blew it. He said “… don’t know what’s going to happen here and abroad.”

McCain seemed rooted in the past, constantly reminding us of McCain-Feingold and the McCain-Kennedy amnesty.

When asked about “sacrifices the people should, expect”, McCain could have followed Palin’s lead and talked about personal accountability. It generated the highest spike of voter interest during her response. This shows a lack of situational awareness that could have scored well for him.

I’ve been wondering where John McCain gets all the really bad advice he’s been following and acting on over the past year and on the same line, our reader says “Is anybody awake in the McCain campaign?”

Obama went in as the front runner and from my perspective he came out further in front. He was much more composed, many might say more “Presidential”. Obama needs to get his numbers right. His advisors need to do more research and stop relying on folklore.

McCain seemed like an old style politician playing games, exhibiting fake smiles and smirks, little gaffes, such as referring to Obama as “that one” and constantly using his tired old “my friends” crutch. I don’t know what that is supposed to mean to us, but it isn’t working.

It feels like McCain is slowly losing it. To remain competitive, he and his team need to do some soul-searching and some serious coaching. Obama’s team, which seems to have some dissenting voices seems to be serving him well.

Foreign policy and political games such as choice of pastor and choice of friends aren’t anywhere near as important as the economy, with people losing their jobs and their homes. Unfortunately, the candidates an their teams will probably engage in attack ads. If that is the case, I feel that McCin will dig a hold large enough to bury himself.

Get with it Senators, it’s the economy!

What did you think?

Alan Gray is the Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of NewsBlaze Daily News and other online newspapers. He prefers to edit, rather than write, but sometimes an issue rears it’s head and makes him start pounding the keyboard. Alan has a fascination with making video and video editing, so watch out if he points his Canon 7d in your direction.