|Was po' before he was poor.|
Herman Cain won the debate tonight.
Wow. Never thought I'd write that.
He was on fire. He was like a different candidate. No one is more surprised to me how well he handled the onslaught from almost every other candidate. He came off strong, presidential, optimistic and revolutionary. As hokey as 9-9-9 sounds, it's hard to argue with both the simplicity and transparency of the plan. As byzantine as the tax code is, something like this plan might be a winner with the American people. Watch out, America...this guy might actually get the nomination, and then we'll have the most interesting general election ever.
The silver medalist was Newt Gingrich, I thought. He came off focused and sharp, at least when they were still asking him questions. He can't win, of course, with his personal problems (adultery just doesn't work). But...whoever gets the nod should make sure he's on the ticket somewhere, because he's very smart and seems like he sees every angle on all the issues.
Mitt Romney was probably the third on the podium, but really, he's on cruise control at this point. It almost seems like he's slightly miffed that he has to keep showing up to these things, even though he's probably the most poised debater. All his answers used ten words to say three, and he seems incredibly adept at never simply answering a question using "yes" or "no."
The rest, including Rick Perry and, sadly, Ron Paul, are fading into the background, and there doesn't seem to be any way to stop the fade. Even the Anger of Rick Santorum bounces off the wall...but really, there needs to be a fade at this point.
At this point, I'm pretty tired of these things. I love politics...I really do. I feel like a citizen when I have spirited debates about how best to steward this country. These debates are theater, not statesmanship. Let's see two or three guys (or girls, I guess) argue for about an hour, then vote. America needs a rest.