The Third Debate: And the Pundits Prefer…


Washington Post: This debate may have been McCain’s strongest performance of the three, but it was also an example of how Obama has used the encounters to try to show that he has not only the knowledge of the issues but also the temperament and the judgment that voters are looking for in a successor to President Bush.

Dayton Daily News: Again, Sen. McCain was more dismissive and critical of his opponent as a person. More than once, for example, he accused him of being cute with words. In truth, Sen. McCain is every bit as cute. Obama’s best defense against attacks designed to make him look like a scary choice is that he looks like anything but, approaching these debates with a composure and ease that disarm the attacks almost without words. Obama even showed appealing flashes of humor, such as when he noted even Fox News, a favorite of conservatives, thought McCain was lying about Obama’s tax plan.

Marcia A. Wade is a reporter at

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  • Oso

    McCain had cancer surgery in February, and didn’t disclose it
    So, to clarify AP’s headline “McCain appears cancer free, healthy” – they really meant “this month.”

    Nice. From AP:
    McCain’s most recent exams show a range of health issues common in aging: He frequently has precancerous skin lesions removed, and in February had an early stage squamous cell carcinoma, an easily cured skin cancer, removed. He had benign colon growths called polyps taken out during a routine colonoscopy in March.
    McCain isn’t cancer-free if he had cancer 3 months ago. What a ridiculously sloppy AP headline, and now this will be the story – McCain is cured! (Except that he had cancer as recently as 3 months ago – hey, maybe Pastor Parsley healed him?) Anybody else troubled that candidate McCain was running for the GOP nomination, went for cancer surgery, and didn’t bother telling anyone? What else isn’t he bothering to tell us, and won’t he tell us in the future? If this is McCain’s standard for disclosure about his medical condition, we’d need weekly document dumps of his medical files because McCain clearly has a policy of hiding his true medical condition while running for president.