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Who Won the Debate Last Night

Debate Rebate: Does This Mean Hillary Won?

Warning! What follows is purely opinion. I'm sure there are quite a few out there who will disagree . . . Let us know, won't you?

Citizen: There's a fairytale that tells the story of a leader who is so taken with the creation of his own image, and his supporters are so equally under his spell, that they'll let him walk around naked, rather than disavow him of the idea that he's wearing a beautiful suit of silken threads. That story haunted me last night.

My mission last night was to watch Barack Obama. (Liberty and I each picked a candidate we weren't voting for, to try to glean a little perspective.) And I tried. Oh, lord did I try. In the harsh light of day, even while the replay of the debate flickers in my face, I'm left empty. I'm not entirely convinced that Obama's continual refrain of "I agree with Senator Clinton" is the basis for a strong case for nomination.

And I admit: I peeked. I paid rapt attention to every detailed, feasible plan Hillary laid forth. Her unflappable competence was more compelling to me than a truckload of platitudes. I listened to Hillary, and though my vote isn't hers, I agree with and apply this, her final sentiment from last night: If Hillary is elected, we will be fine. America will be fine.

After the convention, if Obama walks away with the nomination, I fear his candidacy will be the ultimate political embodiment of The Emperor's New Clothes. His beautiful words nothing but a transparent silken suit, his followers left to choose a man naked of plan and experience because, well, he just looked so darn good on the rack.

Liberty: So, the big Xerox comment . . . Meh? I don't feel as heated as some about the whole "plagiarizing" debate. I assume that an army of advisers and speech writers are contributing to each candidate's material. Did Hillary write the Xerox comment herself? Given the uncomfortable delivery of the YouTube follow-up, it's doubtful. I know it's different than Obama pulling complete passages, but come on — the "silly season" comment stands. Is this the kind of stuff Americans care about?

But now that it's the reigning soundbite, Hillary should use the attention the Xerox zinger got to drive home the idea that Obama lacks substance. Clinton's ability to express distilled yet comprehensive plans that will address specific problems seriously impressed me.

Overall, I left wanting more. Nothing new came out. I know they disagree about a healthcare mandate. I know Barack was against the war, and Hillary voted for it. My parting sentiment mirrored that of Hillary's — My vote has already been cast, it's almost over, and I just hope that whatever happens, as a nation, we will soon roll up our sleeves and start solving problems.

For pointed video of Hillary "recycling" a few campaign sentiments of her own, and the actual quote of Hillary's "Xerox" comment,


Hillary Clinton:

Well, I think that if your candidacy is going to be about words, then they should be your own words. That's, I think, a very simple proposition. (Applause.) And you know — you know, lifting whole passages from someone else's speeches is not change you can believe in; it's change you can Xerox.

Hmm . . . roll tape?

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