Based on the aftermath, it is difficult to assess which was bloodier.
Reader, if you also missed the debate, just watch this clip on youtube.
It's like a low-light reel: "featuring" snarky comments about Hillary Clinton's time as a corporate lawyer serving on Wal-mart's board, Barack Obama's ties to slumlord Rezko, the gutter politics of Clintonism, Obama's Iraq position, Bill Clinton's role in the election, etc.
Much of the most critical back-and-forth was "inside baseball" (video link available in that piece) about what Senator Obama told a board of newspaper editors in Reno. This seems to be the most controversial passage from the interview -- I've underlined the part that Senator Clinton's campaign has been emphasizing:
“I think [John] Kennedy, twenty years earlier, moved the country in a fundamentally different direction. So I think a lot of it just has to do with the times. I think we’re in one of those times right now. Where people feel like things as they are going aren’t working. We’re bogged down in the same arguments that we’ve been having, and they’re not useful. And, you know, the Republican approach, I think, has played itself out. I think it’s fair to say the Republicans were the party of ideas for a pretty long chunk of time there over the last ten, fifteen years, in the sense that they were challenging conventional wisdom. Now, you’ve heard it all before. You look at the economic policies when they’re being debated among the Presidential candidates and it’s all tax cuts. Well, you know, we’ve done that, we tried it.”Bill Clinton was apparently most offended by this:
“I think Ronald Reagan changed the trajectory of America in a way that, you know, Richard Nixon did not and in a way that Bill Clinton did not.”Here's the entire passage.
Will all this yield a bounce for John Edwards? Are Clinton and Obama about to escalate their conflict into all-out thermonuclear war? The mutual assured destruction scenario provides about the only scenario for an Edwards victory.
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