Animadversions.

The weblog of Joshua Drescher

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Tonight’s GOP Debate

June 6th, 2007 · No Comments · Politics

Short version: Giuliani and McCain had stand-out evenings. I’d say McCain probably had the better outing overall, as he is trailing in the polls currently, but both were very good.

The highlight of the evening was obviously lightning shorting out Rudy’s microphone during a response on abortion. Kudos to the entire stage for the only moment of actual humor to EVER take place with ten Republicans on the same stage. Beyond that, he stayed on-message, looked good and maintained an air of authority (and superiority) befitting a front-runner.

McCain’s responses during the back half of the debate were uniformly strong, especially when he rose from his seat and approached the crowd with an equal mix of confidence and intimacy, then addressed the sister of a fallen US soldier on the Iraq War with candor and compassion. Later, when he gave an astonishing, insightful and spot-on response about the importance of immigrants - Hispanics especially - in the US, for the first time in years, it felt like there was a LITTLE bit of th McCain from 2000.

Romney faltered and flubbed and was generally off his game (The Hair is still bangin’, though). Some of his responses were positively indecipherable.

Ron Paul, yet again, appealed most to me of all the GOP candidates. That said, his border fence position is irritating and was highlighted more this evening than in previous appearances. His appearance this time was far less bombastic, unlike his spiritual counterpart on the Left - Mike Gravel. I’d like to see him stick around as a spoiler and I imagine that the extremely lean campaign he’s running, combined with the rabid internet following he’s garnered will help him do so for a while.

Tommy Thompson was actually pretty good tonight and hit a HOME RUN on health care during the second hour. Definitive, reasonable, clear and authoritative. He also has the weirdest hair of all the candidates. Romney (and The Hair) should pick him as a running mate in order to look even MORE handsome.

Tancredo remains TERRIFYING. He’s a frothing, spiteful bigot. He stutters, he spits, he trips over himself and generally makes me feel very, very uncomfortable any time he’s speaking. He’s like an ANTI-candidate.

Gilmore is probably the most forgettable candidate on stage. I honestly don’t have much of a take on him at all (though I DID yell at the screen at one point - jarring poor Aubrey from a brief nap - when he dodged a yes or no question with random pandering on an entirely unrelated issue).

No, wait, Duncan HUNTER is the most forgettable candidate. Despite claims to the contrary by Wolf Blitzer, I’m not entirely sure he was even there.

Brownback reminds me of Rev. Lovejoy from the Simpsons, but less joyful.

Huckabee is sounding more and more rehearsed with each appearance. It felt like we were watching him practicing in the mirror at home during his response to a question about creationism. That said, he has a sort of “nice uncle” vibe that could work well for a VP (sort of the polar opposite of Cheney).

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