I’m glad Rich (and Jim Geraghty) turned our attention back to the Dem-nominee race, because Rich and reporter Ceci Connolly of the Washington Post are on entirely different planets of analysis. Coming out of the Fox-aired debate on Tuesday night, Connolly told Greta Van Susteren the most interesting part was Ed Gordon’s yes-or-no question on whether the candidates would support Bush’s $87 billion Iraq package:
“He only got a one word answer out of Kucinich, which was no. The rest of them all kind of mumbled around and had a lot of caveats, and I think that’s one of the problems that you really see in this Democratic party and this Democratic field right now, is that they know that there is a lot of unease with the situation in Iraq, but they have not yet been able to boil it down to a sentence or two, what exactly they would do or change. So they’re still kind of at that carping phase rather than the vision phase.”
On the one hand, that can be read the Republican way — the Dems are struggling for an answer, and they don’t have one, they just carp. But watching this unfold live, Connolly gave me the impression she was saying only Kucinich is in the “vision phase” by dropping the “mumbling caveats” and saying to hell with Iraq, pull out. Lowry sees a lurch left. Connolly sees too much moderation as the problem. Right after the debate, her first take on the Bush-bashing fiesta was “snoozy.” She was only impressed with Kucinich’s no and Bob Graham saying the president was an intentional liar.