Share on Google Plus Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn Share on PInterest Share on Reddit Share on StumbleUpon Tell A Friend
Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites View Article Stats

OpEdNews Op Eds

Who won the Mississippi debate? Obama -- but for different reasons than you think

Become a Fan
  (1 fan)
By (about the author)     Permalink       (Page 1 of 2 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; , Add Tags Add to My Group(s)

View Ratings | Rate It

To see photos of the Ole Miss campus, the debate venue area, McCain's bus blocking the view, the media tent and my too-dark-to-see money shot of Obama (click on it to enlarge it and you can hopefully see him striding along presidentially), please go to my blog.


John McCain came on strong at the debate in Mississippi the other night -- while Obama just seemed hesitant. So. Why do I think that Obama won? For several reasons.

First, I was actually in Oxford on September 26 and watched the debate from inside a gigantic tent filled with approximately 600 other journalists. While we were all pounding away at our laptops (except for me, I didn't have one, sigh), there was this one young lady who was going around and handing out McCain talking-points to us every ten minutes during the entire time that the debate was in progress. Apparently the McCain campaign people would focus in on something Obama said, plug it into their database, come up with a pre-fab rebuttal, photocopy it onto light blue paper and distribute it to us journalists -- all within minutes after Obama had made his comment.

This was an extremely clever ploy on the part of McCain's team.

However. I soon began to notice that after the third or fourth talking-point conglomeration had been passed out, more and more journalists began covering their work spaces with their hands, indicating that they just couldn't deal with any more light blue papers from McCain.

By the time that the tenth or 12th blue paper was being handed out, journalists appeared to be thinking, "That's a heck lot of trees being cut down just for this...."

Second, as a reporter from Topeka wisely told me in the parking lot later, "McCain was playing to his base tonight, talking about Reagan, POWs, defending Israel, keeping hands off the DoD budget, etc. -- while Obama was playing to the swing vote." Interesting.

After the debate was over, Fox News commentator William Kristol told us that "McCain was on the offensive throughout." And Obama came off as being very mild-mannered, even bringing shades of John Kerry to mind.

During the debate, Obama complimented McCain at least five times, saying "Senator McCain is right...." Why was he doing that? According to the reporter from Topeka, Obama was trying to appear non-confrontational -- because the people in the swing states say that they don't like confrontational debates.

Third, Obama -- not McCain -- appears to be the darling of the media (and also the American people) because he is so much more accessible. Here's an example of the difference between Obama and McCain: 20 minutes before the debate, Obama arrived at the venue, got out of his vehicle and walked the last 50 feet to the side entrance, waving at us journalists as he walked.

"Give 'em Hell, Barack," I cried. And maybe an additional 300 journalists also clapped and waved too. And then we waited for McCain to arrive. And waited.

Ten minutes before the debate, a big-assed bus drove up in front of the rear entrance, totally blocking off any view that the press might have had of the doors. Then, five minutes before the debate was to begin, McCain's vehicle suddenly drives up between the bus and the entrance, pulls into this special white Secret Service-supplied tent and gets out of his car. NO ONE in the press corps caught even a glimpse of McCain as he entered the building, not even for a second. And no one in the press corps clapped for him or waved at him either.

This is a very good example of the difference between Obama and McCain. McCain, like Bush, is not gonna go out there and mix with the hoi poloi, even if they are carefully vetted (and carefully frisked) members of the free press.

Fourth, what I learned outside the immediate debate venue area was also important. What I had seen and heard as I walked around the campus of Ole Miss earlier that day gave me several more insights into Obama's various strengths.

The people I saw on campus who were wearing Obama buttons looked like normal people. The people wearing McCain buttons looked like Goldwater Girls -- like Barbie and Ken. Hey, there are only so many of those types of voters left in America these days. All the rest of us are too busy running for cover trying to protect our bank accounts. And it was to us that Obama seemed to plead his case during the debate.

Next Page  1  |  2


Stillwater is a freelance writer who hates injustice and corruption in any form but especially injustice and corruption paid for by American taxpayers. She has recently published a book entitled, "Bring Your Own Flak Jacket: Helpful Tips For Touring (more...)
Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact Author Contact Editor View Authors' Articles

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

My trip to North Korea: Pictures worth a thousand words?

Exponential happiness: McCain, Obama, Chekhov & my 93-year-old aunt

200 Concubines: In India, it's hard not to think about sex!

Our dual-citizenship Congress: Lotsa pork for Israelis, no pork for California?

Google Earth: Gaza has now gone dark too....

The world's youngest profession: The sociology of a child prostitute village in India


The time limit for entering new comments on this article has expired.

This limit can be removed. Our paid membership program is designed to give you many benefits, such as removing this time limit. To learn more, please click here.

Comments: Expand   Shrink   Hide  
3 people are discussing this page, with 3 comments
To view all comments:
Expand Comments
(Or you can set your preferences to show all comments, always)
When will you tell us what happened with the SS?... by Linda on Sunday, Sep 28, 2008 at 10:11:02 PM
What is sad that every question was anticipated an... by Gallaher on Monday, Sep 29, 2008 at 12:37:03 PM
Agreeing with McCain constitutes yelling @ him?&nb... by Larry Retzack on Monday, Sep 29, 2008 at 9:14:25 PM