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Thursday, September 30, 2004
By Steven L. Taylor

My flash assessment is that Kerry did not accomplish what he needed to accomplish—which was to hit a homerun, land a knock-out punch, or whichever sports analogy one prefers. He did not have a clear statement on Iraq, has left himself open for the attack that he doesn’t understand the war on terror, and did nothing to elucidate a clear difference better himself and Bush beyond just the idea he would do it all “better.?

On a first viewing (and Heaven knows I will end up seeing parts of it over and over) I have seen no major gaffes by either candidate. Further, there really wasn’t anything all the particularly amusing.

Bush did stumble on occasion, but given that that was expected, I am not sure that that mattered.

Bush’s closing statement was better than Kerry’s—it had a vision behind, while Kerry’s was a continuation of his vague pronouncements.

Of course, as with speeches, the coverage is more significant than the event itself.

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8 Responses to “An Initial Assessment”

  1. From Behind the Wall of Sleep » Quick Peek at the Blogosphere (in progress) Says:

    [...] What are the Pajamahadeen saying? Let’s look! Steven Taylor says “My flash assessment is that Kerry did not accomplish what he needed to accomplish — which was to hi [...]

  2. From Behind the Wall of Sleep Says:

    Quick Peek at the Blogosphere (in progress)
    Looking around, seeing what other Pajamahadeen are saying.

  3. Jeff Vreeland Says:

    I definitly agree here, Kerry did not come out firing or prove he was a better canidate. Honestly, neither canidate “won” the election, it was more Kerry Lost it.

  4. Rob Says:

    Kerry made a lot of very general claims, and seems to think he can accomplish anything if he has a year. He’s clearly putting timelines on things just to make people feel confident in his plans; a number makes the plan feel more solid.

    A good example of this is his claim that he can secure Russia’s nuclear material in short order. There are many variables involved in this act, including Russia. We’re not talking about securing our own material. We’re talking about securing Russia’s material. Putin is not going to let US troops guard his plutonium. There is an awful lot involved in securing Russian material that only Russia can do.

    And this Iraq timeline? We might be able to begin to make troop pullouts in six months if everything goes according to my plan? This sort of comment says and means nothing.

  5. John Lemon Says:

    Well, glad you folks thought it went okay (or at least was not a disaster), but I didn’t think it was a good night. Bush was on the defensive the whole time. Kerry set the entire agenda.

  6. bryan Says:

    John, I would be surprised if the president *wasn’t* on the defensive the whole night. He has the record to defend.

    I thought Kerry’s line about “I’ve been consistent. I’ve had one position on Iraq” is going to be good fodder for conservative talk radio tomorrow.

  7. The Moderate Voice Says:

    A Lively Presidential Debate: Will The Race Tighten?
    You could sum up the first Presidential debate tonight as The Professorial Prosecutor versus the Convinced And Slightly Weary Incumbent. A ball wasn’t hit out of the ballpark — but it’s now clear the game is far from over…and could

  8. Mark the Pundit Says:

    The Debate
    First, a few views from others: Steven Green thinks Kerry won on points, but does not think it will make much of a difference. He gave Bush a B- for content and a C+ for delivery, while giving Kerry a…


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