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Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Presidential Debate 2008 - Part2

Oct.7, 2008 was the most awaited Presidential debate in its second part. As usual the results from various polls conducted by private institutions would suggest that Senator Barack Hussein Obama is leading over Senator John Sidney McCain III. Though it is unscientific , MSNBC polls shows Obama winning 85 to McCain with 12. On CBS web site polls with 516 people, Obama has 40% while McCain has 26% while 34% said that the debate is a draw. CNN shows 54 and 30 in favor of Obama. Most of the polls shows Obama won. What is lacking with McCain then? Why people who had time to participate the survey voted Obama? Let me hear your thoughts. What is your opinion?

1 comment:

  1. Hi Amy - I found your post while googling blogs on Casey Anthony, which I have a lot of thoughts on. I wanted to give you my thoughts on Barack Obama and what appears to be not just the first African American to become president, but what I believe to be the first President of the Internet Age - the first true 21st Century politician. Sure George W is technically the first President of the 21st century, but he got there using the same old worn out GOP playbook and had a bit of help from some voter tweaking in Ohio.

    If you go back to the last half century - say 1948, when Truman shocked the world by winning the Presidency despite the Democrat ticket being split three ways (between him, former FDR VP Henry Wallace and Dixiecrat Strom Thurmond) and the great presence of Thomas Dewey, you have 60 years where the GOP has served 36 of those years (or 60% of that time period). In that time period, only Bill Clinton served two terms - in the same time period, Eisenhower, Nixon, Reagan and W served two terms (though Nixon didn't finish his term). In this time period, the Democrat party has been the home of many interest groups: the civil right's movement, the women's movement, the peace movement, gay/lesbian rights, the immigrant worker/labor, environmentalists - and while that may be a wonderful thing to have one party represent so many people with so many interests, it's actually divided the party in such a way that we (I'm a Democrat) have rarely been able to put aside our self interests and solidly back one candidate for the high office. Put it another way: a democrat in San Francisco is considerably different from a Democrat in Boston. However, a Republican in Yorba Lind, CA is pretty much the same as a Republican in Edgefield SC. United behind "family values, the bible, the good old fashioned American way". After the success of FDR's New Deal, the strong relationship between Dr. King and the Kennedy's (even during Ike's term) and the failure of Vietnam, Republicans found its niche when Nixon crystallized the name of all conservative people who felt uneasy with this changing nation: the silent majority. It was the 1968 election where vast majority southern Democrat voters switched their allegiance (sp) to the Republican party. And ever since, Democrats have had to deal with the Gordian Knot of winning back red states. Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton (both from the south) were able to pull their own state along with the blue states to win elections, but it's been very hard for other candidates to follow suit. Meanwhile the blueprint Nixon wrote in '68 (and perfected by Reagan and the Bush's) have always been able to line up the tried, trusted and true conservatives with little effort to win the Presidency. Barack Obama may have changed that for good.

    For one, he's embracing the technology. The internet. Hillary Clinton, while hemmoraging (sp) caucus after caucus and losing her lead, loudly complained that Obama was outspending her 2 to 1. Obama could only do it due to the record contributions he received and is receiving from folks on the web. An outstanding website, careful attention to fonts and colors, loaded with audio feeds and video feeds, even in emails, set himself up perfectly to woo voters used to getting their content on the LCD screen. Barack asked people to text their friends. It instantly gave him an edge over the other candidates (the crowded field of Biden, Dodd, Clinton, Richardson, Kuchines and John Edwards) and it left him well prepared to fight on after Super Tuesday when Hillary thought she had everything wrapped up. The thing is: any of the candidates could have done what Barack did. Even McCain. Sure they have websites now and they have video feeds, audio, etc. But it's clear none of them went into the details that Barack did. And it's classic "small ball" - no need to hit up big doners and risk corrupting yourself when you can ask for $10 from the average voter who will eagerly give a small amount - and give again and again.

    This strong foundation is allowing him to take on a 50 state campaign - of course he's not really trying to win all 50 states, but he is agressively challenging red states most standard Democrats would never think of campaigning. The usual strategy is to strengthen your base and focus on one or two major states you think you can flip. Like only campaigning in Ohio and Virginia, and sending surrogates to the blue states. The war chest Barack has now has set so many blue bonfires in states like Wisconsin, Florida, New Hampshire, Ohio, Minnesota and North Carolina, that McCain is hopeless in not only stopping one major red state to flip but even deciding which one to focus on.

    Then you have the message. Barack Obama's policy is basically the Democrat party line: we want universal healthcare, we want out of the Iraq War while pursuing Bin Laden in Afghanistan or wherever he may be; greater domestic spending for inner cities and greater goverment oversight on our financial market. You'll hear the same thing from Hillary Clinton and John Edwards. The only difference is how they will do it. But Obama has the message of Change - it's yet another theme that has been played over again in politics: change Washington. But Barack's Change has greater resonance - it's not just the culture of politicians in the pockets of lobbyists and giving us a lot of rhetoric while doing very little. You get the sense that there is a conscience behind this Change. We can change the world, we can change the way the USA is seen by other nations. The gentle, intellectual, matter-of-fact speaking Barack Obama is an image most of us who are not envious or prejudiced by his skin can be proud of. His background, his days as a community organizer, his meteoric rise to state senator to US Senator and his nomination as the Democratic candidate is a story many of us want to see. And there are voters who are voting for him just to see history happen. I'm not implying that's the right reason, but i'm sure it's a motivating factor for most.

    So how will this translate for future Democrats? I thnk the new template has been set. Candidates will dominate the web and learn the nuances of crafting web pages and creating web apps. Younger voters will be treated far more seriously. The GOP will realize standard old prejudices (always unspoken) won't be their asset anymore and they will actually have to WORK this time to win elections. Greater emphasis on how to explain to the common people how you'll solve their problems (instead of one liners crafted by handlers) - all of this will have to be mastered by the future politician. Barack Obama, by personal style, mastery of the new technology and awareness of a pool of young voters largely ignored by past politicians - is setting a new standard for the new politician. This former professor is "teaching a class" on how to win elections. What future poltician will pass the class?


I love to read your comments. Thank you so much and I will visit back.

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