Democratic debates

Hillary Clinton
This is Bush’s war (who keeps authorizing funding, then?)

It’s Bush’s war. Yada yada yada. Nobody rebuts with the obvious zinger about Bill shooting long range missiles at Hussein back in ’98. (And why was that?) She blames the Iraqis for not setting up a civil society in the absence of a strong man. But getting Saddam out of power is good. She wants to have it both ways by saying that deposing a dictator is good, but this is Bush’s war. Life doesn’t work that way.

Health care–I’m so glad everyone agrees with me. Let’s let the gov’t lower costs by twisting the arms of the insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies, etc. etc. (Will not be honest about raising taxes to cover the costs) Will let the Bush tax cuts lapse.

On Iran–“I’m not going to talk hypotheticals” (Well, why debate a year and a half before the election, then?) She says we should have been talking to Iran for years now. Sending Condi Rice around the world giving speeches is not diplomacy, even though she’s the head diplomat of our country. Hillary’s line about Dick Cheney gets a lot of applause. A cheap shot that Bill probably came up with. In a way her secret weapon.

On Darfur–essentially, let’s pull out of Iraq and into Darfur.

Gays in the military– Gays and lesbians should serve in the military at all levels. Perhaps including commander in chief? Ok, a cheap shot on my part.

National security–Back to pre-9/11 national security policy. Reminds me of Bob Dole’s “bridge to the past” speech.

Hillary cackles like a hyena. Phony baloney, the phoniest of the 18 candidates. I talked with Yun-ju about it, asking if there’s hope that Americans can see through this phony. Yun-ju’s response, essentially, was to ask how many phony people there are in America. This does not bode well for our future.

Barack Obama

I get Obamamania. He sounds presidential.

On Immigration–Obama agrees with George W Bush and Ted Kennedy 100%, sounds like.

On Health Care–“John and I agree” (theme of the night) Insurance and pharmaceutical companies keep “hoarding profits”

On the Army–Increase the # of troops, more VA hospitals. Touts the VA? Need to treat PTSD.

On Osama bin Laden– Would take him out Jack Bauer style. Nice to hear a Democrat say it.

Osama and Edwards were totally vying for the non-Hillary (i.e. the Johnny B) demographic. Very friendly with each other.

John Edwards

On health care–“You can’t change the health care system for nothing.” (Glad he’s honest)

On Iran–Notes that there is strong pro-American sentiment amongst the Iranian people. He’s right, and he’s right to note this. The Iranian gov’t is not so popular.

On Gas Prices–Vertical integration of oil and gas is bad. Make it harder to refine oil and gas (this lowers prices?) End subsidization of oil and gas industry.

On Education–College for Everyone (yikes!)

Edwards makes a good case that the US needs to establish moral authority in the world by closing down Guantanamo and secret prisons, etc. He’s the most polished on this message and has the most appealing rhetoric

Bill Richardson
Don’t know if y’all know this, but he’s governor of New Mexico. “As governor of New Mexico…”

On immigration–No dividing families with immigration policy. That means no touching back of the home country for Z visa holders. (So illegal immigrants aren’t burdened with the same chores that legal immigrants commonly need to do. But this isn’t amnesty?) Guest workers should have labor protection. Perfect liberal answer.

On Health Care–As Governor of New Mexico, I socialized medicine etc. etc.

On the VA–Soldiers get a hero’s health card that allows them to go to any hospital for service. Follow the soldier, not the VA hospitals. Again, good answer.

On Bill Clinton–“He should be the U.N. Sec’y General” “Israel is a great ally, and needs buttressing”. Well, he just lost Scotty’s vote!

On Sudan–Smartest answer. China buys most of it’s oil from the Sudan. If you threaten not to go to the Beijing Olympics, China can make things quiet in Sudan. A good demonstration of how diplomacy can be used as an effective tool for change, without firing a shot. Perfect Democrat answer.

On Education–Mandatory pre-school. Ugh!

Chris Dodd
He knows stuff, but no one is listening.

On gas–His solution to lower gasoline prices is to impose a carbon tax and require all cars to run at 50 mpg by law. When the price of oil is lowered he would require mandatory rebates for the consumer.

On the Army–Gives a big shout out to the military. Safety and security is the #1 priority of the president (Is this the Democratic debate? I thought it was ending global warming!)

On Richardson’s China answer–No, no, no, China is cool! We can’t pull out of the Olympics! (Richardson merely said let’s threaten to pull out).

On Patriot Act–let’s restore constitutional rights to citizens (Big Applause).

Joe Biden

Everything he says is to defend the Clinton record, and by extension Hillary, at all costs. He’s simply here to lend Hillary some white male credibility when he endorses her in six months. Kerry 2.0

On Immigration–We can’t round up everyone in buses and send them home. Near the Ted Kennedy end of the spectrum on this issue.

Gays–All major allies allow gays to serve. In the foxhole soldiers don’t ask other soldiers if they are gay (It’s against the policy remember?)

Defusing (subsidizing?) Iran and North Korea are on top of his agenda.

Dennis Kucinich

“We’re (Democrats) in charge of this country. (He has a point in that you can’t keep blaming Bush now)

Wants to cut funding to defense. Like, now.

On Osama bin Laden–Would not take him out Jack Bauer style. “We cannot use assassination as a tool of foreign policy, because it might come back to haunt us.” Osama should turn himself in and be held responsible before an international court. Shame on you Osama!

On the deficit–Stop the war and we reduce the deficit. No more NAFTA and WTO (Big applause) Wants FDR type make-work programs….sheesh.

Mike Gravel
For the most part nuts.

The only candidate who wants immigrants to learn English. Likes to use the word “Totally”. Wants line-item veto, which made the rest of the (mostly Senatorial) candidates squirm. Points out the obvious with the carbon tax…that it would, uh, raise the price of gas.

The more I watched, the more I thought Ron Paul just might be the right choice for America.

If you don’t care about things like name recognition, and funding, Richardson was the most sensible and “smartest” of the group. The closest thing the democrats have to a Newt Gingrich, someone who has thought about every issue from many angles. The only governor. If you look at resumes, he is the most qualified candidate. Didn’t get the quick easy applause lines, though.

Obama and Edwards sounded a lot alike and both sounded better than Hillary. The only thing I remember from Hillary is a shrill cackle, “I’m not going to discuss hypotheticals” and an overwhelming sense of entitlement from her, because she let her powerful husband walk all over her and now the American people have to pay for it. Some feminist.

Update: All the professional pundits totally disagree with me on Richardson, and think Biden won? Go figure. I missed the first 10 minutes. Well, here at Logipundit, you get a different perspective, is all I have to say. Richardson botched his immigration answer by trying to explain specifics. No one on the panel could have gone into detail on immigration policy without getting into trouble with one group or the other. Biden sounded a LOT like John Kerry.

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4 Responses to “Democratic debates”

  1. wdporter Says:

    Kucinich didn’t actually say Obama should just turn himself in, did he?

    Wow.

    Who the heck is Mike Gravel? I’m sure he came across as nuts, but he sounds the most reasonable from the three points you made.

    No shock that a former Governor who represented us at the UN, and served as Sec of Energy would have an infinitely better perspective than a bunch of Senators.

    Just call me a fan of Executives.

    How about Huckabee vs. Richardson? That would be a great contest.

  2. wdporter Says:

    sorry…Richardson’s the current Governor. Habit.

  3. JohnnyB Says:

    Mike Gravel was a Senator of Alaska from 1969-1981. He helped abolish the draft and made the pentagon papers public. He is 77 years old and shows it. I gave the positive, common sense points he made, but he provided several incoherent statements.

    I just read what the professional pundits had to say. The consensus is that Biden won and Richardson’s performance was disappointing and horrible. Go figure. Also, James Carville thinks Hillary won!

    Kucinich didn’t say Osama should turn himself in, but he also didn’t say how Osama would get from Pakistan to the Hague. So, I kind of filled in the blanks for Kucinich.

    Richardson got a lot of flack for his immigration answer, but no one else on the stage could have gotten into specifics on immigration without getting into trouble. I didn’t watch the debate, I listened.

    If you are looking for foreign policy cred and executive decision making cred, Richardson is your only choice for the Democratic party. Biden could pronounce Janjaweed correctly, so that will earn some foreign policy points.

  4. Cajun Tiger Says:

    thanks for the recap…I just couldn’t bring myself to the torture session.


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