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Second Presidential Debate Scorecard

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McCain’s Answer

Obama’s Answer

1. “The world has changed a great deal and not for the better.” –Brokaw

Alan Schaffer: What’s the fastest most positive solution to bail these people out


You go to the heart of Anmerica’s worries tonight. Angry and fearful. I have a plan to fix this problem. Energy independence. We have to jkeep all taxes low. lets not raise taxes on anybody. Stop spending spree. We’ve got to have a package of reforms. We are going to hav to do something about home values. They are declinign. I will order SecTreas to imemdiately buy up the bad mortgages, reneogtiate and though expensive.

We must stabilize home values. We need to giev trust and confidence back to America. I know how to get America working again.

Not you, Tom. Tough question. Lot of qualified Americans. Americans immediately idenitfy with, that they trust. Mentions Buffett. mentions Meg Whitman. She knows how to create jobs It is going to have be somebody that inspires trust and confidence. Corruption adn greed have eroded. Good answer

Good exchange for McCain, but he needs to come back to home values which are the heart of many anxieties.

Restates the obvious –worry– talking point about “final verdict” We have to take decisive action. Step one make sure rescue package works.

Cracking down on CEOs.

AIG blast –good point.

Middle class need a tax cut, help for homeowners, help state and local govts set up road and bridge projects.

Warren would be a pretty good choice. Key is making sure thatnext SecTreas understands that it isn’t enough to help just those at the top.

2. Oliver Clark: Economi ccrisis: Bailout practice. How will it help those people out.

Brokaw: No follow up on the kety Freddie/Fannie question. Instead asks if it will get much worse before it gets better. Sheesh.

Not bailout. Rescue. mainstreet paid a price. I left my campaign, suspended it. make sure there were protections for taxpayers. “It will recover” Good. The match that lit this fire was Fannie and Freddie. They were encouraged by Obama and hsi cronies and friends. They gave risky loans…some of us stood up…meanwhile Dems in senate and some Congressmen defended Fannie and Freddie. Sen Obama was second highest recipient of Freddie and Fannie money in history. Rescue package not enough. Brings up housing market again.

Good tough hit on Obama. Fannie and Freddie were the match. Some of us stood uop against it. Others took a hike.

I think it depends on what we do. We need to stabilize the housing marjket. Third time. Key message discipline.

ISenators wrote letter warning about this and Obama not on it.

What’s in the rescue package for you: Credit markets are frozen.

I have to correct Sen McCain’s history. Let’s first of all understand that deregul;ation was biggest problem. Blasts Mccain as a deregulator. “I wrote to Secretary Paulson.” “I went ot Wall Street and said we need to reregualte.”

Sen Mccain didn’t mention that the bill he talkd about wasn’t his bill.

“I never promoted Fannie Mae.” Oh-Oh. Never?

Fact checkers?

Weak response.

No respons eneeded.

3. Theresa Finch: How can we trust either of you with our money when both parties got us into this global economic crisis

Brokaw: Choices and priorities. Another horrible “discussion” point. What about the trust question, Tom.

Theresa: I can see why you feel that cynicism and mistrust. I have been a consistent reformer. I have taken on the big interests. I have a clear record of bipartisan. He has never taken on the leaders of his party. Lets look at our reciords and not our rhetoric.

Go to the watchdogs. Obama’s is the most liberal big spending record in the Senate. Senate Obama is proposing 860 billion in new spending….

Closes on the audience. Overhead projector at planetarium.

OK but could have been stronger.

I think you can work on all three at once Tom. We have to dfo them all at once.

I understand your frustration and cynicism. “Maybe you don’t go out to dinner as much?”

Remember a little bit of history. Bush’s surplus not a half trillion defeicit.

Terrible answer. Emotional question. Talking point answer.

“How can we trust you” is the key question. Obama whiffs. Talks about investments and spending cuts. Door open to Mccain. Huge opening.

We’re going to have to prioritize. Oil is benefitting iran, Venezuala. “We can do it.” JFK and nmoon program. Nice.

We do need to look at our records. Understand this: Gets jab at Mccain’s tax cuts.

4. Internet: Chidl of depression. We have never been asked to sacrifice…What sacriufices will you ask every American to make

I am going to ask the American people that there are programs we are going to have to eliminate. Defense contracts. Earmarks have to go. Even really good projects will have to go. Spending freeze. Talking points. Not on offense here, but…

We’re Americans. We can work on all these problems. I’m not going to tell that person without health insurance you will have to wait.


Tragedy of 9/11 President Bush did some smart things at outset. But he missed some. “Go out and shop.” call to service was necessary.

Hungary for the kind of leadership…

Oil company leases. Clean coal technology Each of us needs to conserve.

Last point: Young people: Double the Peace Corps and expand Volutneer Corps

Brokaw: Bush said “Wall Street got drunk.” How would you break thses bad habits. Another ibnvitation to waste time on talking points. Nailing down Obama’s tax proposals is like jello on wall. he wants to rasie taxes. Hoover did this. Protectionsim as well. Senator Obama wants tax increases on 50% of small business revenue. Their taxes going up means firing people. Let’s not raise anyone’s taxes. I am in favor of leaving the tax rates alone. But increasing credits.

Hoover jab is good

Spending side/revenue side.

Brokaw’s question allows Obama to repeat talking points. Good for Obama to use this opening, but this is what Tom comes up with: Wasting time?

5. Huge unfunded obligations for SS and entitlements. Would you give Congress a date certain?

Its not that hard to fix SS. We know what the problems are and we know the fixes. We have to sit down across the table. Been done before. Reagan-Oneil. I’ve taken on the party, Obama never has.

Medicare tougher. Mccain comforatble her. Like the base closing commission.

Rhetoric and reciord: Obama has voted 94 times to increase taxes or oppose tax cuts. He never once proposed middle class tax cuts. Strong.

We’re going to have to take on entitlements. I can’t guarantee that we will do it in next two years. We can’t solve these without understanding the rest of our tax policies. back to tax plans and talking points. 95% again. Brokaw’s question allows this again. “Only a few percent of small businesses make more than $250K, so the majority of busienss get a tax cut.”

Huh? fact checkers? Obama is calling for small buisness tax cuts?

6. Ingrid Jackson: Move fast on evironmental issues.

Manhattan Project? Or 100,000 garages?

Tough economic times, and never forget the struggle we are in today. We have an issue of a damaged planet. I have disagreed with Bush Adm on this issue. Joe Lieberman and I forced this debate forward. What’s the best way to fix it? Nuclear power. Nuclear power is safe clean and creates job. Strong.

R&D appropriate. Then turn over to private sector. “Who voted for it “That one. Who voted against it? Me.”

Drilling now crucial. We have got to drill offshore, adn we have to do it now.

Not just a challenge an opportunity. An engine that drives us into the future. Weare going to have to make an investment.

7. Health care coverage? Health care a commodity?

Complicated health care proposal. MEGO. Hair trasnplant joke flubs.

Here is what I would do…You can keep your plan if you are satisfied with it. We will work with your employers to lower your premiums…forms/triplicates/

You are going to be able to buy from the huge pool. No pre-existing conditions.

Unicorns and ponies for everyone, but well delivered.

One hour down, and no talk about foreign affairs or the European dimension of the financial crisis. Worst moderated presidential debate in history? In the middle of a crisis we get a talking points debate?
“Everybody goes to delaware beacuse they have loose laws on credit cards?”

Oh, Joe Biden’s

Phil Elliot: Our abuility to act as a peace maker?

Nation’s that are strong militarily have to have a strong economy. We will hear a lot of criticsm, and much is justified, but we are the greatest force for good in the history of th e world. We are peace makers and we are peace keepers. The challeneg is to know when to go in and when not to. That question can onlybe answered with knoweldeg, experience adn judgemnt. “We are a nation of good.”

I am convinced that my record and my judgemnt I am willing to stand on. Obama wrong about Iraq and the surge, wrong about Russia. He does not understand…

Senmator McCain suggested that I don’t understand. I don’t understand how we ended up invading a country…

When McCain was cheerleading, that was wrong

It has been costly to us…

Enormous strain on our budget. 700 billion. It will go well over a trillion.

Brokaw: Use of US Combat forces in humaniitarian xcrises: Congo..Great question, finally

If we had done what Senator Obama had wanted done, we would have had a wider war, we would have a disaster. Senator Obama would have bnrought our troops home in defeat.

We must do whatever we can to prevent genocide, tempered by our ability to effect change.

“This requires a cool hand.”

Recalls Lebanon You have to temper your decisions with the ability to udnerstand limits. I know those situations. I have been in them all my life.

We have moral issues at stake. If we could have intervened effectibvely in the holocaust. Surely if we had the ability…uh uh, when ethnic cleansing is happening, and we stand idly by, that diminishes us. But understand that there is a lot of cruelty around the world. That’s why it is important for us to work with our allies.

Darfur. Set up no-fly zone.

Katie Ham: Shoudl US respect Pakistani sovereignty or pursue our enemies as we did in Cambodia

Teddy Roosevelt. Talk softly but carrry a big stick. Senator Obama likes to talk loudly. Obama’s position is remarkable. When you announce you are going to attack a country it turns public opinion against us.

Follow up is fine with me –good.

Not true. I understand what it is like to send young Americans in harm ways. The point is I know how to handle these crises.

I’ll get OSB. I know how to do it. But I am bnot going to telegraph my punches. We have fuindamental disagreements. You just saw it.

Terrific question. I believe part of the reason we have a difficult situation is because we went into Iraq. We go distracted.

No answer yet. This is the central front on terrorism. So part of the reason I think we need to end Iraq is to get more troops there.

I do believ that we have to chaange our policies. We can’t coddle Pakistan. We are going to expand our non-military aid.

if we have OSB in our sites, we have to act.

“Nobody called for an invasion of Pakistan. Mccain says I am green behind the ears. Hits Obama on Iran, NK and Iraq. Good hit.

Brokaw: Afghainstan: Brits general and diplomat General Petraeus has just taken over the command and will set the tone here. It is the same ovrall startegy. Double Afghan army. Most importantly, we need the same strategy that Senator Obama denies working in Iraq. Still won’t admit he was wrong in Iraq.

Clear/hold/rebuild security

I have confidence in Petraeus.

Obama goes to Iraq, and says we need some additional troops in Afghanistan. Non-responsive

Pressure Karzai. he doesn’t have to be a dictaator.

Alden: Russia?

We aren’t going to have another cold war, but Russia’s behavior is outside the norm of behavior for wealthy nations. I warned about Putin years ago. Surrounded by KGB apparatchiks. Watch Ukraine. In Putin’s sites. We have to show moral support for Georgia nd Ukraine. Must be penalties fo rthis behavior.

Talking points. No flub.

Russia evil?

Maybe. Depends on how we respond to Russia. Explains his ambiguity well. I think we can deal with them, but they have to udnerstand a very determined USA.

They have engaged in evil behavior.

Carrie Sherry: Israel: If Iran attacks, what would you do.

Nice exchange with the chief. We would not wait for the UN Security Council. Russia and China would pose signifiant obstacles. Iranians are a great threat. Not just to Israel, but to entire Middle East. What would you do with Ahmadinejad’s statements? Senator Obama wants to sit down and negotiate with without preconditions. We need significant, tough sanctions. We can do that in a league of democracies. At the end of the day, and you know what it is like to serve, and you know what is to sacrifice, and we cannot allow a second Holocaust

We cannot allow Iran to get a nuclear weapon –doesn’t answer question. Proliferation questions,.

New Hampshire: What don’t you know and how will you learn it

What all of don’t kniow: What will happen here and abroad. Americans are hurting tonight as they haven’t in a generation. We will be talking about countries that we hardly know who they are. But I have spent my hwhole life serving this country. Family’s record of service. I know what it is like in roguh times. I know what it is to fight through difficult times. Powerful close.

My wife Michelle could give you a much longer list and most of the time I learn it form her. It is never the challenges you expect. I wouldn’t be standing heree if it wasn’t for the fact this country gave me opportunity


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