Tuesday, October 21, 2008

MSNBC-TV: Comparing Campaigns & Politics

by Brooks Jarosz

The third and final debate was...well, interesting to say the least. Of course, the name most discussed was "Joe the Plumber," mentioned 25 times. I was happy to see suburban Toledo, Ohio, my hometown, get so much publicity!

Reacting to the debate, I thought it was a valid representation of what each campaign stood for. Picking a winner and a losser seems to be a popular thing to do after a debate, so I'll give my opinion as well. While many opinions commended Presidential hopeful Barack Obama, I felt he was too laid back. On the other hand, Republican presidential candidate, John McCain was on the attack. Right off the top, he didn't seem to miss a beat. He was prepared to win and in many respects, did. Some critics say McCain's shifty eyes and intense movements made him seem angry and erratic. I think this spoke to the ultra conservatives who believe McCain will bring change.

Obama was laid back and relaxed trying to focus on the issues and trying to avoid major attacks. Many Obama supporters say they want to hear about the issues, mentioned many times on MSNBC. Either way, both candidates had a strategy for gaining more support to win the presidency.

"Hardball" Picks Apart Campaigns
Chris Matthews, host of "Hardball" had an interesting segment last week. He interviewed two strategists: one republican and one democrat. He asked Republican Strategist, Todd Harris why some states changed from 'for' McCain to 'lean' McCain in the state projections. Harris mentioned that much of it has to do with the unlimited amounts of money the Obama campaign has raised and how it's choosing to spend those funds. I have to agree and it's a good point to bring up that Obama's campaign is spending unprecedented amounts of green stuff while also giving millions of dollars away to local and state democratic parties. The Obama campaign just doesn't know what to do with all of their campaign contributions it's receiving. Whether that's a good thing or a bad thing is to be determined, but I can think of numerous other things the money could be used for to benefit American citizens... the economy maybe?

Harris also mentioned that Obama should be winning by double digits with the amount of spending that occurs day in and day out and that Independents are still in favor of the Republican candidate. Another good question raised, is Obama's race playing into some people's decision? I would say, unfortunately, yes, that plays a big role in many Americans' minds.

In projecting a winner, Democratic Strategist, Steve McMahon says some votes aren't even accounted for in the polls, thanks to the number of Obama supporters trying to get new voters to register. I can certainly attest to that as it was very prominent here in Athens. Every time I turned around, someone was there asking me to register. While Matthews, discounted McMahon's point of the electoral college, I agree with McMahon. Obama is projected to lead the electoral college count by 100 votes and I don't see McCain gaining that many states in two weeks, despite what has happened in history. Matthews always gets his opinions in here and there, but overall I enjoyed this dual.

Anti-Americanism...What is That?
Sometimes I don't get it. There are some stupid people out there and yes, they're in the political world too. MSNBC-TV spoke with Congresswoman Michele Bachmann about her views on Barack Obama. She said we need an investigation into Anti-Americanism in Congress. She also mentioned the media should be looking into this as well. Are you kidding me? Does she not think the vows taken as a Senator matter? All of this negative campaigning and comparing Obama to a terrorist makes me sick. Let's get to the issues!

MSNBC should be focusing more on things that actually matter and less on sensationalism. I did, however, enjoy the response they got on this issue from Colin Powell. He said if you're an American, that's what you are and Americans get strength through unity and diversity. It's just too bad the campaigns cause the nation to be divided. Let's hope we all come together...November 5th!

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