This was a welcome and wonderful victory for the vice-president. The questions were hard on both sides–the biggest difference from the first debate. The vice-president is smart, knowledgeable, experienced, and classy. Edwards is smart and smooth. But overall Edwards had poor comebacks and wilted under the cumulative force of the vice-president’s blows. Edward’s lack of experience showed through in the end. But the real reason the vice-president won this debate is that there truly is a difference between the two sides on the fundamental issue of the war on terror–and the American public agrees with the president. So long as Kerry’s record on foreign and defense policy is out in the open, this race is over. The campaign was heading toward a blowout after the swift-boat ads and the Republican convention brought out the truth about Kerry’s lifetime dovishness. Lehrer’s refusal to ask questions about Kerry’s record managed to hide this fundamental truth. But the Bush campaign, beginning with tonight, is bringing it out again. Keep Kerry’s defense record at the forefront and we win. That is what the vice president did tonight. This is why he won.