2008 Presidential Debate III: Liveblogging

PHOTO: McCain and Obama debate

» Skip down to my conclusion «

Is Bob Schieffer older than John McCain?

McCain repeats his plan to buy $300 billion worth of home mortgages. He says it hurts everyone if these homes are abandoned, even those who were responsible with their money. Sounds good.

Obama talks very specifically about tax breaks for the middle class and tax hikes for rich folks and businesses that have been dodging taxes. He also manages to attack McCain’s plan as a possible giveaway to banks.

McCain very awkwardly recites an attack on Obama’s plan to raise taxes on businesses through a story about Joe the plumber. Obama says McCain is misrepresenting his plan, and that only the truly wealthy businesses and individuals would see increased taxes.

Obama is using a lot more numbers than McCain. It sounds boring but it makes him sound more versed in the specifics of both their plans.

McCain attacks Obama on dangers of wealth redistribution. This is outright class warfare.

Obama looks generous by saying he’s willing to pay more taxes so middle income Americans can have a little of the burden lifted from their shoulders.

Schieffer repeats the CW that we should cut back on spending during an economic crisis. Read my thoughts  on why that’s wrong. Obama makes a similar case to what I did, but not nearly as strongly as I’d like.

McCain pulls a Palin and ignores Schieffer’s question to go back to his new pet issue, buying up bad mortgages.

McCain repeats a lie about Obama not supporting nuclear power, why does he have to keep lying about that? Their positions on energy aren’t that far apart, just admit it and move on. And now he repeats his ridiculous spending freeze idea.

The audience here thinks McCain is coming across as smug and a little too self-satisfied with his own canned zingers.


Obama ties McCain to Bush’s budget proposals that have expanded the budget.

McCain very forcefully says he’s not Bush, and that Obama should have run four years ago if we wanted to run against Bush.

McCain thinks he can balance the budget in 4 years. Bulls**t.

McCain just got owned on his challenge to Obama to come up with a time he opposed Democratic leadership.

Obama gives McCain unearned credit for his stance against torture.

Schieffer tries to make it seem like both Obama and McCain have been running equally negative campaigns. That’s bull. Now he’s challenged them to say negative stuff to each other’s faces.

McCain won’t do it. Coward. He claims he’s had to be tough because Obama wouldn’t agree to all of the townhalls McCain wanted to have. McCain claims he’s the victim of John Lewis and Obama. Check out Olbermann’s Special Comment yesterday for the truth on John Lewis and McCain.

Obama doesn’t play the victim card like McCain did. Good for him. This should be about issues he says. He also calls out McCain on the townhall idiocy McCain tried to pull. Good response.

McCain is willing to give a list of Obama’s ads that are negative attacks on McCain’s positions. He is trying to dupe Obama into bringing up Ayers and Wright. McCain brought out Lewis again. Boo.

Obama brings up McCain rallies and the supporters there who yelled that Obama should be killed and he’s a terrorist. Good for him. McCain still tries to say he’s the victim because of JOHN FREAKING LEWIS. Shut up crybabby.

Obama gave him an opening by bringing up Palin’s claim that he’s palling around with terrorists.

McCain says that everyone at his rallies is GREAT! What the…?

McCain finally grew some balls and actually brought out his attacks on Ayers and ACORN. Good for him. It makes him look like a piece of sh** though.

Obama trotts out his response to the question of Bill Ayers. Says he’s just a guy on a board he was on with a bunch of other people. Nothing to see here.

Obama now lists the people that will actually influence his policy. Good for him.

McCain wont give it up. ACORN! AYERS!

Obama laughs at McCain’s claim that his campaign is about issues. Heh.

Obama is now giving an ode to Joe Biden. Love at first sight.

McCain looks pathetic trying to defend Palin. “She’s a reformer.” “She’s a role model.” Ha! He must have not heard about those ethics violations…

Obama is gracious about Palin’s qualifications. He needs to bring up her ethics violations, constant lying, and negative attacks.

McCain isn’t gracious about Biden…

McCain just finished saying that we need more government intervention on behalf of special needs children. Obama points out McCain’s spending freeze would put a damper on that. Then McCain says Obama is always trying to increase spending? Huh?

McCain is interrupting Obama a lot and talking over Schieffer. I wonder if people will think he’s being a jerk?

Obama and McCain apparently hate Venezuela. Me too. Chavez destroyed my investment in a Canadian Gold Mining company 🙂

Obama believes in free trade. But says we need protections for the environment and whatnot… McCain says Obama is lying about wanting offshore drilling and nuclear power. Maybe McCain’s right…

McCain just made some incomprehensible point about Columbia. Trade good. Drugs bad? Obama should travel to Columbia! What?

McCain just rolled his eyes… when Obama brought up Columbian labor leaders being assassinated.

Obama feels bad for Detroit automakers. Everyone should tell Detroit they deserve to die for being horrible at making cars.

McCain again brings up the whole sitting down with bad guys from foreign countries. And apparently Obama is Hoover too. Obama should bring up that Hoover cut government spending, like McCain wants to do, which deepened the Great Depression.

Obama speaks very clearly about how he plans to change health care for the better. Decrease costs for current policy holders and make it possible for all people who don’t have policies to get them. Still not as good as John Edwards or Hillary Clinton’s plan, but luckily he’s running against John McCain.

McCain has brought up Joe the plumber so many times that I want to punch both McCain and this plumber guy. He also seems incapable of describing his own plan, and lies about Obama mandating coverage. His plan doesn’t, that’s what Edwards and Clinton said Obama should have done.

McCain looks like he has a zinger ready. Let’s see if his look of self satisfaction is warranted. Somehow I bet it’s underwhelming or an outright lie.

Obama seems to know more about McCain’s plan than McCain does. And he is doing a great job of making McCain’s plan seem scary.

McCain’s zinger has to do with Joe the Plumber. Ugh.

Obama knows when to look right into the camera and talk to the American people. A tactic that Palin overused.

McCain is tiptoeing around his desire to overturn Roe v. Wade.

McCain describes a litmus test then says he opposes a litmus test. Good job McCain…

Obama basically says: Vote for me, because the next pres will be picking lots of SCOTUS justices. A point that should be made more often to libruls.

McCain is not wearing a flag pin!!!

McCain is misrepresenting Obama’s position on abortion while he was an Illinois Senator. What a surprise. Obama sets the record straight.

Obama wants reform and more money for education.

McCain says education is the civil rights issue of the 21st century because low income areas have crappy schools. He uses it to make a case for charter schools and vouchers.

Personally, I think gay and lesbian discrimination is the civil rights issue of the 21st century. Too bad both of these candidates are bad on that issue. McCain is worse, unsurprisingly.

BTW, my HD signal sucks. I’m getting lots of distortion. McCain and Obama sound like Max Headroom.

Next time, they should do 4 or 5 of these and have them be an hour instead of 90 minutes. Liveblogging is exhausting… cry me a river. Please!

Obama has been gracious to McCain – he’s willing to admit when he has good ideas – in the last 20 minutes or so, while McCain is insulting Obama and talking over him. Not a good contrast for McCain.

Closing statement time.

McCain: I’m the change guy! Maverick even. You can trust me, and POW!

Obama: I’m actually the change guy. Bush sucks, and by extension, so does McCain. You Americans are awesome people. But we gotta make stuff again if we want to be strong. And change is tough but possible. Vote for me.

Yay, it’s over!

(Chuck Todd on NBC just said McCain mentioned Joe the Plumber 20 times!)

For me personally McCain’s repetition of long disproved lies has moved beyond infuriating to just exhausting. It’s hard to really analyze the debate with that in mind.

Like the first debate, McCain succeeded in controlling the discussion largely through the sheer force of lies and his petulant demeanor. If think if that style was effective, the public would have declared McCain the winner of the two debates ago.

Guess it’s time to watch the instapolls… Goodnight everyone.

Flickr photo by Captain Alcoholica


  1. Ian

    McCain’s a jackass. He keeps interrupting Obama and saying crappy comments during Obama’s time.

  2. Chris

    Can’t argue with that.

  3. Ian

    McCain is wrong about the ending dependence on foreign oil. He’s talking out of his ass. It takes ten years to get Alaskan oil flowing, what makes him think we can so quickly build the infrastructure necessary for alternative energy?

  4. Chris

    Good point… McCain is spouting so much garbage that I can’t keep up.

  5. Ian

    Joe the plumber is more important than anyone else in this country apparently.

  6. Ian

    Joe the plumber = Joe six pack?

  7. Chris

    That’s what Charlie just said. Great minds think alike? Nah 🙂

  8. Ian

    I don’t get why every one of McCain’s retorts has to come with an insult. “I’m surprised you didn’t notice that Senator Obama.” Just makes his seem like a grumpy old jerk.

  9. Chris

    Yeah, I think his disdain is coming across just like in the other debates.