It's Hard Work
That was Bush's tagline for most of the debate. The other one was "I am steady and don't waver". So Bush's foriegn policy comes down to that. Don't worry, its just hard work, but I am steady and I don't waver and all will be fine.
I thought Kerry made a more persuasive argument. It's one I made earlier in the day with my foriegn policy post. He said that we need friends to win the war on terror and Bush has made a lot of enemies. He also said that staying the course and ignoring the realities on the ground isn't a winning proposition.
I don't think there was a winner or a loser in this debate. The winning/losing part will happen on Nov 2nd.
Tonight, Bush was Bush. You either love him or hate him. I haven't met too many people who don't have a strong feeling about him. He probably made the people who love him love him even more tonight with his steadfast approach to foriegn policy.
Kerry was pretty good. I would have liked him to hit Bush harder on the flip flop issue on the vote to support the war. He gave Bush what he asked him for. And then Bush abused it by rushing to war without building a real coalition and wihtout giving diplomacy the chance to work. And Bush is now using it against him politically. But other than that, I thought Kerry made his point of view pretty well and since I agree with it, I was pleased to see that.
The two parts I liked best about Kerry were his strong stand that Bush did not go to war in Iraq as a "last resort". He made that point twice and he made it well. The other one was when he reminded Bush that the "enemy" who attacked us was Osama Bin Laden, not Sadaam Hussein. In fact, I believe that was the best moment of the night for either guy.
The media probably wants to see a horse race and so will be tempted to say that Kerry did great and he's back in it. If that's not the spin, I'll be surprised.