Muhammad Ali mastered the rope-a-dope and beat harder punching sometimes flailing opponents. Obama allowed McCain to hit him with verbal attacks without stinging counter-punches. Perhaps he was hoping McCain would make mistakes to exploit with an effective comeback. He didn’t.
Some facts got lost when Democrat Barack Obama and Republican John McCain confronted each other over the financial crisis, Iraq, the oil industry and more in the first presidential debate of the 2008 general election.
Here are examples:
OBAMA: "Senator McCain mentioned Henry Kissinger, who is one of his advisers, who along with five recent secretaries of state just said we should meet with Iran — guess what? — without preconditions."
Democrat Barack Obama and Republican John McCain battled over spending, taxes and the Iraq war in their first debate on Friday, sharply questioning each other’s judgment and ability to lead on the biggest issues facing the United States.
In a 90-minute debate that gave undecided voters their first chance to directly compare the White House candidates in the November 4 election, McCain and Obama clashed over their economic and security approaches in heated exchanges that highlighted broad policy differences.
Liberal and Democrat vs. conservative and Republican. Taller, younger and black vs. shorter, older and white.
It was a night of contrasts as Barack Obama and John McCain shared a stage in their first of three presidential debates.
The only similarities: a lack of specifics, a reliance on campaign-trail sound bites and an inability to answer a question directly.