Archive of Articles for October, 2012

"Predict The Election" Contest

[ Posted Wednesday, October 17th, 2012 – 18:53 UTC ]

Since everyone else in the punditary universe is rehashing last night's presidential debate, we're going to do something more frivolous and fun today. We're going to run a "predict the election" contest for everyone to step into the pundits' shoes themselves. Consider yourself a wonk? Think you know better than the polls? Ready to publicly state what your predictions are? Well, then, get ready to play!

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Obama And Romney Bring Their "A" Game

[ Posted Tuesday, October 16th, 2012 – 20:58 UTC ]

Since I brought the subject up, however, I will jump into the "winners/losers" fray and give my snap reaction to what we all just witnessed tonight. Barack Obama and Mitt Romney both brought their "A" game tonight, unlike Obama's first widely-panned performance. Mitt Romney was not appreciably different tonight than the first debate, but Obama certainly had eaten his Wheaties this morning. Or maybe the more up-to-date version is "drank his Red Bull," I really couldn't say. This provided much more lively television, to put it mildly. Actually, "mildly" isn't the right word, since not much of anything about tonight was mild in any way.

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2012 Electoral Math -- Obama's Debate Cliff

[ Posted Monday, October 15th, 2012 – 18:41 UTC ]

Welcome back to our now-weekly Electoral Math column series. In the introduction to last week's column, I warned that the full effects of the first televised presidential debate had yet to fully appear. This week, the effects showed up in a big way -- which (as you can probably guess) was mostly good news for Mitt Romney and bad news for Barack Obama, as some of his numbers fell off a rather large cliff.

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Friday Talking Points [230] -- Biden's Big Night

[ Posted Friday, October 12th, 2012 – 16:36 UTC ]

We come to you live from the arena, the day after the vice-presidential debate. The lights are being removed, the podiums are gone, and the cleanup crew is sweeping up the tiny, tiny pieces of Paul Ryan which were left all over the stage last night.

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Biden Unleashed

[ Posted Thursday, October 11th, 2012 – 20:56 UTC ]

Yesterday, I predicted the media would use some pugilistic terminology to talk about the vice-presidential debate, before it happened, to hype the event in an effort to get more people to tune in. But I must admit, I didn't really expect the event itself to live up to the billing.

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Veep Debate: Ready To Rumble?

[ Posted Wednesday, October 10th, 2012 – 17:16 UTC ]

Before tomorrow night, we'll be hearing a whole lot of "vice-presidential debates haven't ever mattered," mostly uttered by the same people who told us, a week ago, that "presidential debates rarely change anything." Since these nattering nabobs of negativism (to use a famous vice-presidential phrase) were wrong before, one has to at least consider that they may be wrong again. Tomorrow's debate may matter a great deal to the voters. The first presidential debate was watched by a jaw-dropping record number of viewers (upwards of 70 million), and it's all anyone's been talking about since in the political world (even the Big Bird stories were tied in to the debate). So perhaps quite a few folks will tune in tomorrow night as well, and perhaps Joe Biden and Paul Ryan may prove to move public opinion this time around.

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Where's H. Ross Perot When You Need Him?

[ Posted Tuesday, October 9th, 2012 – 17:03 UTC ]

Taking an overview of the 2012 election can quickly lead one to some awfully cynical conclusions, such as "American politics is broken," or the more succinct "Washington is broken." After all, politics is supposed to be about issues, but politicians (especially on the campaign trail) are more interested in high-flown language rather than getting all nitty and gritty with details. The whole situation leaves me with a rather bizarre feeling: missing the likes of H. Ross Perot.

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2012 Electoral Math -- Debate Effects Remain To Be Seen

[ Posted Monday, October 8th, 2012 – 16:47 UTC ]

Among Barack Obama supporters, panic seems to be setting in after his first debate performance was roundly panned. National polls have pulled back into a neck-and-neck contest. This is all fun for the pundits, who (pre-debate) were on the verge of declaring the race all but over (and, hence, boring), but we hasten to remind everyone that this is not how we elect presidents. The national popular vote is meaningless -- just ask Al Gore. Presidential elections are won and lost state by state, which is how this column series examines things.

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Friday Talking Points [229] -- Beyond Debate

[ Posted Friday, October 5th, 2012 – 17:47 UTC ]

The first presidential debate of the 2012 season happened this week, and (it pains us to say) the only person who called the outcome correctly was Chris Christie. Last Sunday, he predicted a "game changer" of a debate, and that we'd all wake up Thursday with a whole new race and a whole new opinion of Mitt Romney. While we rarely agree with Chris Christie about much of anything, we've got to at least hand it to him -- in the midst of the usual pre-debate expectations-lowering game, he went rogue and predicted a big win for his guy, and he turned out to be correct.

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Debating Formats

[ Posted Thursday, October 4th, 2012 – 17:23 UTC ]

Last night's debate format was unusual in this day and age. This was reportedly why Jim Lehrer "unretired" to moderate one last presidential debate. It was supposed to be the crowning achievement of a stellar career which included running numerous debates in past years. The overwhelming consensus today is that Lehrer should have stayed retired, and rested on his laurels, because if this was a crowning achievement it was more like a paper crown at a kid's birthday party.

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