The debate ended without the fireworks some pundits were expecting. Though Sens. McCain and Obama reiterated many of their arguments from the first debate, Obama seemed more confident in his tone and delivery. During the initial debate Obama said he agreed with McCain several times. There wasn’t any of that tonight. McCain hammered in on what he calls Obama’s pork barrel spending and “being wrong about the surge in Iraq.” Will this debate be a game changer? Will McCain get the boost he needs in the polls from after tonight? Seeing as how viewers didn’t learn anything new about the candidates and their plans, it’s highly in doubt that this debate will have a great impact.
Final call – 10:31 – And the candidates wrap up. Obama says some of the obstacles the president may face are “never the challenges you expect, it is the challenges that you don’t which consume most of your time,” he says. “We need fundamental change,” he adds in his closing remark.
“I believe in this country, I believe in its future, I believe in its greatness,” McCain says. Is this a possible play on the McCain camp, Obama=terrorist claims? McCain ends on a note of uncertainty. “What I don’t know is what we all don’t know,” he says. “What is going to happen both here at home and abroad, the challenges we face are unprecedented.”
Much ado about Iran – 10:25 – McCain says the U.S. would not wait for the UN security council to take action on Iran if it threatened Israel. McCain pledges to promote some sort of “league of democracies,” to increase pressure on Iran and he calls for more sanctions.
Obama says he will never take military options off the table when it comes to Iran. Obama and McCain agree on one thing; not waiting on the UN security council to act. He also talks about tightening sanctions on Iran and preventing it from importing oil.
Going after Russia – 10:20 – While not wanting to get into a Cold War 2, McCain says the U.S. needs to work to put international pressure on Russia using the G8 -a body of leading international countries – and other international organizations. McCain says Russia attacked Georgia unprovoked.
Obama says Russia “engaged in evil behavior.” McCain says Russia “may be” evil.
Afghan strategy – 10:16 – Obama says the U.S. will need to work with the Karzai government to treat the people better. Brokaw asks if there needs to be a new dictator? That question seems a bit weird. McCain goes back to pressing Obama about being wrong about the surge and Iraq.
More foreign policy – 10:10 - Obama proposes to expand non-military aid to Pakistan,