Last night I watched the gubernatorial debate on WCVB TV and here are some of my impression…
The Format and the Moderator: Truthfully, both moderator John King of CNN and the format of the debate stunk. For the first 30 minutes King asked candidates direct questions. OK, I don’t mind that…but he did no give the other candidates an opportunity to rebut the answer. King strongly squashed any attempt by a candidate to defend himself/herself. The format of the second 30 minutes was better. Each candidate asked questions of a “predetermined” candidate (I didn’t like the predetermined part). This could have been a great segment, but the moderator did a poor job. Yes, King allowed more give and take between the candidates but he showed more concern for keeping the debate on schedule than getting the issues out.
Democrat Deval Patrick: Deval was, well Deval. Last night I saw the same Deval that I watched debate Kerry Healey four years ago. He was articulate, in command and personable. Even though 60% of Massachusetts doesn’t think he has done a good job as governor, he has a knack of making you forget that. What’s that drug that makes you forget called, Sodium Pentothal?…Deval’s voice reminds me of Sodium Pentothal…it makes you forget the past.
Republican Charlie Baker: I finally figured Baker out last night. He is the second coming of Mitt Romney… and he wants to be. Like Mitt he was born wealthy. Like Mitt his father was a big time Republican operative. Like Mitt his private success makes him believe you can run government like a business. You can’t! And like Mitt he just doesn’t come across likable or sympathetic to the average guy. This is Baker’s biggest problem. His sounds like a CEO watching the bottom line and not like a governor that is the leader of educational, social and safety programs. I’m figuring during one of these debates, Baker will suggest we chop Massachusetts up and sell it off in pieces…because its worth more that way.
Independent Tim Cahill: Cahill did much better in last night’s debate than the one sponsored by WBZ several weeks ago. He leaned heavy on Baker. Poked at the governor and when criticized he responded. Tim also won the “Who would you rather have a beer with” contest. I’d be more comfortable sharing a brewski with Tim, than a Chardonnay with any of the other three (although I’d bet Deval is a Pinot Noir guy).
Jill Stein: I thought Stein was dreadful in the first debate. Last night she excelled in the first 30 minute segment when the moderator questioned the candidates directly…but fell apart in the second half of the debate during the back and forth exchanges. She was polling at 4% going into the debate and she’ll still poll at 4% after the debate… and probably 4% on election day.