Sarah Palin at Wash U. Debate

Luntz Focus Group Calls Palin The Winner: “I Think She Just Spoke To The People, The American People”

Luntz Focus Group Voter: “I think she just spoke to the people, the American people. She was direct.” (Luntz Focus Group On Fox News, 10/2/08)

“She Was Every Bit His Equal”

The New York Times’ David Brooks: “I thought she was every bit his equal. I thought she was fluid, confident, she struck her theme, just the regular old mom. But she handled the foreign policy issues. She did fine with Iraq. She did fine with Iran. She certainly hit energy often enough. I suspect Republicans are going to be quite pleased.” (David Brooks, PBS’ “Post-Debate Analysis,” 10/2/08)

  • Brooks: “She could do policy, she did quite well on the gubernatorial issues and did quite well on mentioning John McCain all the time, much more than Joe Biden who scarcely mentioned Barack Obama, she did quite well with that. I thought was just that style of me versus Washington. I thought it was quite effective for her in general. I suspect most people, there are a few more hallmark moments, Norman Rockwell moments but I suspect most people will really like that.” (David Brooks, PBS’ “Post-Debate Analysis,” 10/2/08)

“She’s Articulate, Quick, Detail-Oriented” With “Everyday American Appeal”

ABC’s Rick Klein: “[W]here has this Sarah Palin been? She’s articulate, quick, detail-oriented tonight.” (Rick Klein, “Live Debate” Blog,, 10/2/08)

  • Klein: “9:03 pm CT: ‘It’s so obvious that I’m a Washington outsider,’ Palin says. Again, better done than said, but undeniable. This line of attack, driving a wedge between Biden and Obama, is legit, though it can seem forced at times.” (Rick Klein, “Live Debate,” ABC News’ “Live Debate” Blog,, 10/2/08)

CNN’s Bill Schneider: “Palin is going after Biden over his comments that the wealthy should pay more taxes as a patriotic move. The Alaska governor has come to this debate fully armed.” (Bill Schneider, “Schneider: Attack, Counter Attack,” CNN’s “Political Ticker” Blog,, 10/2/08)

The Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza: “Palin to Biden: ‘Can I call you Joe?’ GENIUS.” (Chris Cillizza, “Twittering The Showdown In St. Louis,” The Washington Post’s “The Fix” Blog, Washington Post Fix Blog, 10/2/08)

  • Cillizza: “Palin starts with a ‘kids soccer game’ story in regards the economy. Folksy — playing to her strengths.” (Chris Cillizza, “Twittering The Showdown In St. Louis,” Washington Post Fix Blog, 10/2/08)
  • Cillizza: “State of Alaska…taking on oil companies…this is good ground for her. The more she talks about reform, the better.” (Chris Cillizza, “Twittering The Showdown In St. Louis,” Washington Post Fix Blog, 10/2/08)

MSNBC’s Carrie Dann: “Here’s that folksy, everyday American appeal right out of the gate with Palin’s first answer. She says you can hear about the consequences of the tough economy just by asking parents at a hockey game on a Saturday afternoon … ‘You’re going to hear some fear’ about ‘the few investments some of us might have,’ she says.” (Carrie Dann, “The Palin McCain’s Been Talking About,” MSNBC’s “First Read” Blog,, 10/2/08)

MSNBC’s Domenico Montanaro: “Good start on the first question from Palin. She was crisp and went right to those … soccer moms, if you will. She brought the economy to the middle class and said the barometer is how parents on the sidelines feel. There are likely a lot of nodding heads in some living rooms at home.” (Domenico Montanaro, “Palin, Off To Good Start,” MSNBC’s “First Read” Blog,, 10/2/08)

NBC’s Matthew Berger: “Those who have seen Palin debate in Alaska say she is very efficient, and you’re seeing that now. She’s taking Biden on directly, speaking at him and then turning to the camera to make her points.” (Carrie Dann, “Palin’s Efficiency,” MSNBC’s “First Read” Blog,, 10/2/08)

The New York Times’ Katharine Q. Seelye: “Ms. Palin makes a grab to be more pro-Israel than Mr. Biden, which seems to tick him off.” (Katharine Q. Seelye, “A Tense Moment,” The New York Times, 10/2/08)

The Atlantic’s Ambinder: “Palin is adept at keeping Biden on the offensive.” (Marc Ambinder, “The Debate: Liveblogging I,” The Atlantic’s “Marc Ambinder” Blog,, 10/2/08)

Commentary’s Linda Chavez: “Palin is easier to listen to than Biden. First answer was, if not a home run, at least a double.” (Linda Chavez, “VP Mom,” Commentary’s “Contentions” Blog,, 10/2/08)

Commentary’s Eric Trager: “Palin reminds Biden that he has often differed with Barack Obama on the Iraq war, and offers her respect for Biden’s previous positions. ‘I don’t know how you can defend his positions now.’ Brilliant.” (Eric Trager, “Her Best Moment Yet,” Commentary’s “Contentions” Blog,, 10/2/08)

  • Trager: “She calls Biden out on voting for the war before he was against it. Biden has only himself to blame for setting Palin up with a meek explanation of why he authorized the war without (supposedly) supporting it. This is the knockout punch of the night thus far.” (Eric Trager, “I’m Such A Washington Outsider,” Commentary’s “Contentions” Blog,, 10/2/08)

The Politico’s Jonathan Martin: “She knows all the wedges between Biden and Obama, including their votes on troop funding, and even drops in a reference to that Jon Stewart interview where the Delaware senator said he’d be honored to run with his colleague from Arizona.” (Jonathan Martin, “Palin Got Good Oppo Brief,” The Politico’s “Jonathan Martin” Blog,, 10/2/08)

Townhall’s Amanda Carpenter: “Palin says Obama’s vow to meet with foreign enemies goes ‘beyond naivate, [sic] beyond poor judgment. Diplomacy is hard work by serious people’ with guidelines and sanctions ‘before any kind of presidential summit would take place.'” (Amanda Carpenter, “Palin’s Smoking Obama On Foreign Policy,”,, 10/2/08)

Commentary’s Jennifer Rubin: “Sarah Palin takes us back to the Bush-Cheney energy plan and reminds him that Obama voted for it. Then she goes back to her own record of getting tough with the oil company. Forget expectations, she might just be winning this. At least for now.” (Jennifer Rubin, “Energy Plan,” Commentary’s “Contentions” Blog,, 10/2/08)

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