Sarah Palin’s Debate Performance: “She Killed”

October 3, 2008

Overall, I am very pleased with Sarah Palin’s debate performance. Granted, it was obvious that she does not have the depth of knowledge of some issues as Joe Biden, but that is part of her appeal. She spoke directly to every day Americans last night and proved that she had the grasp of the issues and the ability to think, react, and maintain her cool that a VP needs.

Palin has been beat up in the media these last few weeks and I’m sure as I browse through the news stories today there will be criticism of her debate performance. Already this morning I have seen numerous liberal media outlets that claim a Biden win in the debate, but I believe if you asked anyone who has been following the elections since the RNC, they would say it was Palin’s to lose and she won. She renewed the confidence of Republican voters and reminded America why they liked her so much after her RNC speech.

For Sarah Palin and the VP debate last night she can hold her head high against her critics.


Live Blog of VP Debate

October 2, 2008

I will blogging about the VP debate live this evening! Hit f5 regularly to see what a person from Main Street America thinks about the VP debate.

Palin vs. Biden

Question 1-Bail-out, worst or best of Washington?

Biden-last 8 years of economic policies are a failure. Obama’s four criteria for rescue: oversight, focus on homeowners, no CEO benefits. Fundamentally change focus of economic policy by focusing on middle class.

Palin- Ask everyday American’s how they feel about the economy; fear, the economy is hurting. Government has not provided good enough oversight. John McCain has a history of providing oversight. McCain’s suspension of campaign was a good thing.

Question 2- How shrink gap of polarization?

Biden- Lists accomplishments, has as many Rep. friends and Dems. Goes after McCain for fundamentals of economy statement.

Palin- McCain was referring to the American workforce. They are the best in the world. Stresses track record of reform known for putting politics aside to get the job done. Obama has mostly voted along party line. Send Maverick of the Senate to the Whitehouse.

Question 3- Subprime lending melt-down, who’s at fault?

Palin- The fault of predator lenders who mislead Americans. Need to stop the greed and corruption on Wall Street. Every day Americans need to band together and say they will never be taken advantage of again and demand strict oversight. Americans need to avoid getting themselves in debt.

Biden- Obama warned about this 2 years ago, and McCain said he was for cutting regulations. McCain supports traditional Republican stance of deregulation. Middle class needs relief.

Palin- Tax relief needed for Americans. Obama and Biden voted for largest tax increases in US history. They voted for tax increases 94 times. Government needs to learn to be more efficient and make do with less. Obama supported tax increases for families making as little as $42,000/year.

Biden- Obama did not vote to raise taxes, McCain voted 477 times to raise taxes. Says Palin did not answer the question on dereg.

Palin- Stresses record on cutting taxes as Mayor and Governor.

Question 4- Obama proposed raising taxes on people making over $250,000

Biden- Fairness. Middle class is struggling. No one making less than $250,000 will see their taxes raised. 95% of people will get a tax break. Economic engine of America is the middle class. McCain wants 300 billion in tax cuts for the wealthy.

Palin- Says small business owners fall into the $250,000/ year category. Goes after him for suggesting paying higher taxes is patriotic. Government is not the solution, often it is the problem. Let the private sector have more freedom.

Question 5- Defend McCain’s healthcare plan

Palin- $5000 credit for families to purchase their own coverage rather than government run the program. McCain wants to allow competition between state.

Biden- It is not a redistribution of wealth, it is fairness. 95% of small businesses make less than $250,000/year and would not see tax increase. McCain taxes as income the healthcare plans of employers. 20 million people will be dropped from insurance.

Question 6- What promises will the campaign not have to keep in light of the economy?

Biden- No more double foreign assistance. No going forward with McCain’s tax cuts. Can’t slow up on education. Can’t slow up on providing healthcare for Americans. They will eliminate wasteful spending in the budget.

Palin- Energy plan: Obama voted for one the gave big oil tax breaks. Palin had to take them on in Alaska. CEO’s of oil are not her biggest fans. She put the people of Alaska first. Says she personally hasn’t promised anything to take off the table.

Biden- Obama voted for bill because it had support for alternative energy. He voted against big oil in other bills. They want to give Americans back $1000 like Palin has done in Alaska.

Question 7- Congress passes bill for making it harder for mortgage holders to declare bankruptcy, support?

Palin- Yes, again points out McCain’s calls for reform. Put politics aside to fix the problem. Need to make sure that credit markets don’t seize up.

Biden- Mortgage holders did not pay the price. Obama pointed out 2 years ago that there is a subprime crises. McCain said he was surprised by the crisis. Banks should be able to adjust the principle that you owe, not just the interest.

Palin- Talks about enery again. Says it is nuts not to allow Alaska to tap into its energy reserves. It would created tens of thousands of jobs. Energy independence is the key to this nations future. It’s not about tax breaks.

Question- Climate change?

Palin- Climate change is real, but it is not all caused by man. Cyclical changes of the planet. Encourage other nations to come along on climate change. Reduce emissions. Relying on other countries pollutes more than America would ever stand for.

Biden- It is man made. He knows what the cause is. McCain has voted against funding alternative energy. Obama believes in clean energy (coal, nuclear). Export clean coal tech.

Palin- McCain supports cap on carbon emissions. Obama/Biden say no to finding domestic solution to energy crisis. McCain also supports clean coal and nukes.

Biden- The answer is not oil for everything.

Question- Do you support same-sex benefits?

Biden- Absolutely. There will be no distinction between same-sex and heterosexual marriages. It’s only fair. The Constitution calls for it.

Palin- Does not want to redefine traditional definition of marriage. Says she would be tolerant of Americans choices. Defines as marriage as between one man and one woman.

Biden- Does not support gay marriage.

Question- Exit strategy from Iraq?

Palin- We have good plan. The surge has worked and was pushed for by McCain. Obama did not support the surge. Obama voted against funding troops in Iraq. We do not need early withdrawal in Iraq. We can continue draw down in Iraq and send more to Afganistan.

Biden- Obama’s plan is to shfit responsibility to Iraqi’s and draw down troops. McCain voted the same way on not funding troops because it had a timeline. Obama says there has to be a timeline. Time for Iraq to spend its own money. There is not end to war for McCain.

Palin- Obama plan is a white flag of surrender. They opposed the surge. We will be finished in Iraq when the government can govern and military and handle security. Biden said Obama not ready to Commander  and Chief.

Biden- McCain voted to cut off funding because of timeline. McCain has been wrong on the issues of war, Obama has been right.

Question- Nuclear Iran or unstable Pakistan, which is greater threat?

Biden- Pakistan already has nukes. Iran getting one would bad. McCain says central front of terror war is in Iraq, but it is in Pakistan. We will get Bin Laden.

Palin- Gen. Petraeus said Iraq was the central front in the war on terror. Iran cannot be allowed to acquire nukes. Israel would be in jeopardy. Obama would sit down with dangerous dictators without precondition.

Question- sec. of states say we should be engaged in diplomacy? Do you agree?

Palin- Yes, but we can’t engage at a presidential level. We will engage in diplomacy and have a plan in place.

Biden- Theocracy controls Iran. We need to go the extra mile in diplomacy to get our allies to sit with us. Goes after McCain for saying he would not sit down with Spain.

Question- Two state solution on Israel?

Palin- Yes, and would at the top of a McCain agenda. Need to assure Israel that there will be no 2nd holocaust. They will build and embassy in Jerusalem. Israel has track record of achieving peace agreements.

Biden- Biggest friend of Israel. Obama shares his passion. Bush policy on Israel is a failure. Iran has a stake in Lebanon and in Gaza.

Palin- No administration’s policy has been a failure. The administration has made mistakes. Obama and Biden keep looking back and not to the future.

Biden- The past is a prologue. McCain’s policy will not be different than Bush’s poicy. We will change policy.

Question- Use of nukes?

Palin- Ours are deterrents. Do not allow rogue leaders to get or proliferate nukes. McCain would have different strategy on Afghanistan. Institute an Iraq-like surge.

Biden- Gen. said surge will not work in Afghanistan. Spend more money in three weeks in Iraq than seven years in afghanistan. McCain voted against nuclear test ban treaty.

Palin- Gen. did not say surge principles would not work in Afghanistan. Afghan leaders have not said the surge would not work.

Biden- Gen. did say that.

Question- Intervention with military? Will Americna public go for it?

Biden- yes, troops in Bosnia saved lives. It is now relatively stable. Said going in Iraq would be a mistake. Voted for giving pres. power, but not to invade. Lead NATO into Darfur and impose no-fly zone.

Palin- Biden voted for the war before not supporting it. Biden supported McCain’s strategies before joining Obama ticket. Palin agrees with Biden on Darfur. As Gov. she divested money in Sudan.

Biden- We have to have the capacity before we go in. Never supported McCain’s strategy.

Palin- Again, Biden did support McCain before joining the ticket. McCain knows how to win a war because he has been there. He knows to learn from mistakes and listen to commanders on the ground.

Question- How would VP admin be different than top of ticket?

Biden- carry out Obama’s policy of supporting the middle class, energy policy, foreign policy, reject Bush doctrine of regime change. This is most important election since 1932.

Palin- A team of mavericks does not agree 100% on everything (ANWR drilling). She would put government back on the side of the people. Bring main street reality back to Washington.

Biden- People say they are worse off under Bush. People see McCain as another Bush. The middle class has gotten the short end.

Palin- Need to increase education funding. Can no longer accept poor schools. Put more emphasis on profession of teaching.

Question- What does VP do?

Palin- Preside over senate. Supportive of president’s policies. She would lead on energy independence and overall reform of government according to McCain.

Biden- Point person for legislation. Will advise Obama on decisions. Was chosen for independent judgment.

Palin- Will do what is best for the American people in ushering in the President’s agenda, appropriately.

Biden- Cheney has been the most dangerous VP in American history. The primary role of VP is to support the POTUS. VP only steps in during tie votes in senate.

Question- Achilee’s heal?

Palin- She has the experience in her past to lead. Shares her worldview with John McCain.

Biden- Lack of discipline, excessive passion. He will not change. Will put his and Obama’s record up against his competitors. Understands the plight of Americans from his experiences (ie single parent).

Palin- People are not looking for more of the same. Willing to put partisanship aside. McCain’s supporters illustrate his appeal across the aisle.

Biden- McCain has not been a maverick on the things that matter (budget, healthcare, education)

Final question- Single policy issue where forced to change a long held view?

Biden- Ideology of judges does make a difference

Palin- There were budgets that she maybe should have vetoed and wanted to cut taxes. She has not had to compromise on any major positions because they have able to work together in Alaska.

Question- How do you change the tone?

Biden- I have been able to work across the aisle. Does not question motives of fellow senators.

Palin- Appoint people regardless of party affiliation as she did during her tenure. People will have a choice come Nov. 4th.

Closing statements-

Palin- Wants to speak without the filter of mainstream media, likes the debate format because she can address America directly. We have to fight for freedom.

Biden- Most important election in your entire life. There is a need for fundamental change. It’s time for America to get up from being knocked down.

Personal note-

Thanks to everyone for reading this evening. I will try to post my thoughts on the debate tomorrow. Thanks again!


Bill Kristol: “McCain’s bold move could reframe the election–and win it”

September 25, 2008

William Kristol had a good take on McCain’s recent call to suspend the debate later this week so that he and Obama could return to Washington to help shape the conversation about the current financial crisis. Obama seems to think that a 90 minute debate is more important than being on hand to deal with the biggest financial crisis of the decade and says that McCain should be able to do more than one thing at a time and should still attend the debate.

While most of the liberal media has been critical of McCain, calling this a last ditch effort to save the campaign (Google the news on this issue and you’ll see that most media outlets are critical of his decision). William Kristol, however, disagrees and says that ultimately this makes McCain appear more presidential.

————————————————————————-

A Presidential McCain
McCain’s bold move could reframe the election–and win it.
by William Kristol
09/25/2008 12:00:00 AM


THERE’S A REASON voters in presidential races tend to shy away from electing senators. The primary skills of a legislator–talking, compromising, “representing”–are different from those of an executive–deciding, choosing, “executing.” There are individuals who have the ability both to deliberate patiently and act energetically–but it’s a rare combination. The best legislators tend not to be great executives, and vice-versa.

This year, for the first time in U.S. history, both major party nominees for president are sitting senators. The winner may be the one who can convince some portion of the electorate that he’s less “senatorial,” and more “presidential,” than the other.

That’s why McCain’s action Wednesday–announcing he would come back to Washington to try to broker a deal to save our financial system–could prove so important. The rescue package that was so poorly crafted and defended by the Bush administration seemed to be sliding toward defeat. The presidential candidates were on the sidelines, carping and opining and commenting. But one of them, John McCain, intervened suddenly and boldly, taking a risk in order to change the situation, and to rearrange the landscape.

Of course his motives were partly election-related. But “the interest of the man must be connected with the constitutional rights of the place.” If candidate McCain, for whatever mixed motives, ends up acting in a way that results in a deal that is viewed as better than the original proposal, and that seems to stabilize the markets and avert a meltdown–he’ll benefit politically, and he deserves to. For McCain will have acted presidentially in the campaign–which some voters, quite reasonably, will think speaks to his qualifications to be president.

As for the question of Friday night’s debate, which some in the media seem to think more important than saving the financial system–if the negotiations are still going on in D.C., McCain should offer to send Palin to debate Obama! Or he can take a break from the meetings, fly down at the last minute himself, and turn a boring foreign policy debate, in which he and Obama would repeat well-rehearsed arguments, into a discussion about leadership and decisiveness. And if the negotiations are clearly on a path to success, then McCain can say he can now afford to leave D.C., fly down, and the debate would become a victory lap for McCain.

So the action of these few days becomes more important than the talk of that hour and a half Friday night. One could even say the contrast between the two men in action becomes the true debate over who should be president. The media, being talkers and debaters, love debates, overestimate their importance, and are underestimating the possible effect of McCain’s dramatic action. In the debate itself, McCain should mock the media’s greater concern for gabbing than solving our economic problems, and should associate Obama with such a talk-heavy media-type approach to politics. If the race is between an energetic executive and an indecisive talker, the energetic executive should win.

William Kristol is editor of THE WEEKLY STANDARD.


Huckabee Concedes, Gracefully

March 4, 2008

This was a tough day for me. I knew when I woke up this morning that Huckabee’s chances were slim, but I held out hope for a miracle. Unfortunately, the miracle did not happen. Mike Huckabee, former governor of Arkansas, conceded the race to John McCain a few moments ago.

I listened to his concession speech and I was again struck with the humility the man has. Mike Huckabee understood that it was not the support of the Republican establishment, gobs of money, and the backing of the talking heads that got him to March 4, 2008. His speech was basically a long thank you to his supporters and family. The speech was the most graceful and heartfelt concession speech I have ever heard and he deserves credit for the way he conducted himself.

I must confess that as I watched the speech I could not help but feel some anger at the Republican establishment. They decided that John McCain would be the nominee and then pushed him upon the American people as the only choice. McCain is guilty of accepting that support and refusing to acknowledge that Americans did have a choice in his refusal to debate Huckabee. Sure, it might have been a smart political move for McCain not to debate, but it was not the right choice. The Republican establishment decided long ago that Huckabee would never be the nominee and they succeeded in shutting him out.

Personally, I am very grateful for Mike Huckabee. I had never before contributed to a political campaign. I had never before attended political rallies. Mike Huckabee motivated me to be more involved in this election than I ever have before. He was pro-life and pro-family. He supported my 2nd Amendment rights. He had an immigration plan that made sense. He supported strengthening and building up the military. He supported a complete overhaul of the tax system through the FairTax. He had the freshest ideas and the best approach to the Presidency of any of the candidates.

Today the American people decided that John McCain was the best man for the job. I strongly disagree.

Where does this leave me? I will probably mope around for a few days. I guarantee I will be a lot more apathetic about this election because of John McCain’s liberal tendencies. It leaves me right back where I was after the election in ’06: wishing for a third party that was not so steeped in the political system that it actually cared about doing what is best for the people of America and not just doing what is best for the Republican establishment.

The moping will now commence.


Politico.com Focus Group: Huckabee Overwhelmingly Won Debate!

January 31, 2008

More on the debate from CNN’s Schneider

January 31, 2008

Here’s more collected comments from CNN’s Bill Schneider on Huckabee’s performance during the debate last night:

Huckabee scores in debates – 08:22 PM ET

Huckabee speaks in a manner using a language that connects with ordinary voters.

McCain and Romney sound like politicians. His appeal is that he doesn’t.

He won the Iowa caucuses because of his performance in the debates. It was the debates that put him out in front in Iowa – in a debate like this, he could make some gains.

Huckabee’s common-sense response – 08:33 PM ET

Huckabee’s answer on climate change sounds like a common sense defense of federalism– right or wrong, Californians should be able to make the decision for themselves. And he brings up “unfunded mandates” – major negative buzzwords for GOP primary voters…..

Read more over at I Love Huckabee.


Missed the debate?

January 31, 2008

First, catch Mike’s OUTSTANDING answer to “Would Ronald Reagan endorse you?”, asked of all the candidates. He was the very last one to speak last night:

Watch the entire debate on YouTube (I love the Internet!):

Part 1: http://youtube.com/watch?v=W1uZBiOnWt0

Part 2: http://youtube.com/watch?v=fPOpQizUHDk

Part 3: http://youtube.com/watch?v=uUhIdxMlK1w

Part 4: http://youtube.com/watch?v=SxafwRjuTMA

Part 5: http://youtube.com/watch?v=Ji2nW3tLNHA

Part 6: http://youtube.com/watch?v=eH7J5abp0sw

Part 7: http://youtube.com/watch?v=rHLfhOr55_U

Part 8: http://youtube.com/watch?v=F01I3rYSFkE

Part 9: http://youtube.com/watch?v=rVN0Cvt_5Mc