“Expect Some Spice”

Thursday, 11.29.07

When speaking with a Texas news anchor yesterday, John predicted that the debate would be “spicy”. After all was said and done, he sure wasn’t off the mark. Last night’s debate was indeed a flavorful mix, with a little heat and some real kick.

Before I get to my little review, I wanted to share some links and videocaps of John during the day as he made a few rounds with local Florida stations and also a Texas station.

Here he is being interviewed yesterday in the wee morning hours by WTSP in Tampa Bay:

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And later on in the day by cable news station BayNews9: (Thanks Mebz for this videocap)

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And also by KCDB in Lubbock:

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He joked with Mario Diaz of WTSP about how he has been covering politics since the Reagan administration. “I am a dinosaur. I covered politics when the dinosaurs were still roaming in the mud pits,” he quipped. lol!

Also, while speaking with anchor Sharon Maines in Lubbock, John revealed he was not involved in the question selection process – something I had been wondering about. He mentioned that since he was going to provide debate coverage, it would not be appropriate for him to know ahead of time what the questions are.

Now, what would a YouTube Republican debate review be without plenty of YouTube videos?!? Let’s start off with a YT video voiced-over by John, shall we? Here is his report about the debate, dubbed “The Raw Moments”:

I thought the evening’s questions were a mixed bag. It appeared that CNN’s selection team decided to be a bit more “safe” this time around: no snowmen, no Jackie & Dunlap, etc. I thought the questions ended up being pretty straightforward for the most part – and in some ways, a bit predictable. With a few exceptions, I can’t say that many of the questions stood out at me, really. The opening song was a nice touch, though.

We sure didn’t have to wait long, though, for the “spice” John talked about. Almost immediately, Giuliani and Romney were shooting barbs at each other over immigration.


And Fred Thompson’s 30-second ad? As Anderson Cooper said, “What’s up with that?” Apparently, according to the below interview, Thompson does not regret using that negative campaign tactic:

General Keith Kerr’s military question was controversial, not because he is a gay man who served in the military, but because apparently he is on a steering committee for Hillary Clinton’s campaign. This little tidbit of information was actually revealed by Bill Bennett, who mentioned it live on air, catching Anderson Cooper off guard during a post-debate roundtable discussion. Whoops!

Here is a recap of Kerr’s question, along with a segment of that roundtable discussion and Cooper’s apology for the oversight. I thought he handled it extremely well:

I didn’t care for how Romney dodged Kerr’s question about gays in the military: “This isn’t that time. This is not that time. We’re in the middle of a war.

Even though I disagree with Republicans on their position with this issue, I nonetheless thought Hukabee was a bit more clear with his answer: “The Uniform Code of Military Justice is probably the best rule, and it has to do with conduct. People have a right to have whatever feelings, whatever attitudes they wish, but when their conduct could put at risk the morale, or put at risk even the cohesion that Duncan Hunter spoke of, I think that’s what is at issue. And that’s why our policy is what it is.”

The Mars question was interesting. Congressman Tacredo gave a flat and unimpressive answer of “We can’t afford some things, and by the way, going to Mars is one of them.”

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I thought Huckabee was again more clear in his response: “I would certainly want to make sure that we expand the space program, because every one of us who are sitting here tonight have our lives dramatically improved because there was a space program — whether it’s these screens that we see or the incredible electronics that we use, including the GPS systems that got many of you to this arena tonight. Some of you were late because you didn’t have one, by the way. Or whether it’s the medical technologies that saved many of our lives or the lives or our families, it’s the direct result of the space program, and we need to put more money into science and technology and exploration. “

Without a doubt, Huckabee delivered some of the best lines of the night:

And at the very end of the debate, there was a Yankees-Red Sox question! I thought that was a nice and light-hearted way to wrap up the evening.

So who did I think fared well at the debate? Surprisingly, I was more impressed last night with Mike Huckabee probably than the other candidates. He was well-articulated and appeared confident on stage. His manner was a bit more easy-going and not so tense or attacking, like some of the other candidates came across as. He also had just the right dash of humor – funny but not to the point of being insulting. Maybe Chuck Norris is on to something.

After the debate, there was a little bit of a scuffle in the spin room when several reporters were clamoring to speak with Governor Huckabee. Someone remarked, “Where is Chuck Norris when they need him?”

If I had been there in the middle of that melee, I probably would have asked, “Where’s John King when you need him?”

It will be interesting to see if this format will be used again before the November election, or if it will spread out into future elections as well… who knows? However, maybe by the year 2012, we’ll have some other amazing new technologies which will impact the evolution/format of Presidential Debates.

Thanks for dropping by today!

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3 Comments

Filed under Election 2008, Election Debates

3 responses to ““Expect Some Spice”

  1. Millie, I really like your write up of the debate. I saw the debate last nite and I liked it. Giuliani and Romney need to grow up. They were acting like children last nite. Thompson’s 30 second ad was ridiculous. I mean did he have to stoop so low as to blatenly attack Romney and Huckabee. That was low. And some of the questions I just thought really didn’t belong. Like the one about the flag. I’m sorry but this country has bigger issues than a flag. And the question about space exploration…there are more pressing issues than that too. And the money that would be used for space exploration could be used for so many other things.

    FanGirl moment: Anderson looked so so so pretty last nite and he did a FANTASTIC job moderating the debate. I was very impressed with him. I also liked the way he handled the apology on 360. Very professional as always.

  2. Millie

    Thanks AC.

    You’re right, Anderson was very professional about the apology. Although when he first heard that remark from Bill Bennett, I’m sure some “explicative” words were probably going through his head!!! LOL!

  3. I bet he did have some swear words going through his head when Bill Bennett commented on it…lol!!! However he is so professional though and that is sometihng I have always respected about him.

    I hope that one day we get to see John host a debate. I think he would do a good job too. John is very professional as well 😀

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