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Last night's debate between sen.Joe biden and gov.Sarah palin was"Entertainment"But useful since it showed that the republican vice presidential nominee could stay in the ring with the washington insider of longstanding and revealed aspects of both their personalities.

Those were among the observations by stephen hess of the brookings institution, one of washington's most affable, oftquoted experts on the presidency, who had some other interesting things to say about last night's vice presidential debate and presidential debates in general.

"They were curious to see which gov.Palin was going to show up on the stage,"Hess said of the millions who tuned in to watch last night, far more than who viewed the presidential debate. "Was it going to be the gov.Palin who electrified the republican convention or was it going to be the respondent to katie couric? "He said.

That observation sounds right to me.If you thought Cheap Bridesmaid Dresses you would see a train wreck happen live on tv before your eyes, wouldn't you tune in?

Anyway, you can see the rest of his thoughts on the brookings institution's website.

John mccain's campaign is allbut daring democratic vp nominee joe biden to commit a, well, bidenesque flub in tonight's debate with gop counterpart sarah palin.Hours before the curtain goes up in st.Louis, the mccain camp has released a video compiling some of biden's more colorful gaffes in his long political career.

The video is running online only, which basically means on blogs such as the swamp.It begins with an announcer asking,"What might joe biden say at tonight's debate?Anything's possible. "

This isn't how campaigns often play the runin to a debate.Usually, one side talks a lot about the skills of the other witness mccain on biden this week and downplays its candidates' chances.It's all about setting a higher bar for your opponent than for your team.

Instead today we get this ad titled"Embarrass"And the proclamation that biden is"Ready to gaffe"But not"Ready to lead. "

Rodriguez:Thank you.Before we talk about your book, i'd like to ask you about the debate that will take place here this evening.What do you think sarah palin needs to do to silence her critics?

Mr.Gingrich:I think she needs to relax, forget most of her handlers and be who she is.She was a very effective mayor, she was a very effective governor.She's not a washington insider, she's not a 35year veteran of the senate, she's not a lawyer, and i think she just has to relax and be a grassroots conservative with strongly held views and letyou know, let's see what happens.She's not going to outbiden biden.Heyou know, he went to the senate when she was in the second grade.He is a washington insider, he can answer all the gotcha questions from the news media.He knows all the trivia.But he's never prepared a budget.Nobody's going to ask her tonight, what was it like to prepare a budge for the state of alaska?' and then ask Senator Biden, Now, what was your executive experience like?' to which the answer is zero.So i think it'll be very much a washington insider situation.She's not going to win by pretending to be a student who has studied washington.She will win if she relaxes and is the person i think she is, which is a reformer, an outsider, a populist and a genuine conservative.

In other words, let palin be palin.But we think that's exactly what her handlers are concerned about.

Relax.Easy for gingrich to say.Palin only has the weight of republican hopes to keep the white house on her shoulders tonight.

Sarah barracuda just needs to remember her highschool basketball days when she would go to the freethrow line with the game on the line, take a deep breath and sink her shots.

Photo:Wasilla point guard sarah heath(Palin), 22, defends against jumpshot during the 1982 state basketball see results about Prom Dresses UK championships.Anchorage daily news/mct.

The obama campaign sent vice presidential running mate sen.Joe biden out to soften up the target, namely sen.John mccain, today in anticipation of friday night's presidential debate.

That was before mccain turned the tables on sen.Barack obama by asking to delay the debate.

And before obama turned the tables on mccain and indicated his inclination was to go ahead with friday's debate on the university of mississippi campus.

Anyway, biden's job was to lay out a series of what the obama campaign considers mccain's foreignpolicy judgments from the arizona senator's contention that iraq is the central front on the war on terror(Which biden turned into the"Central war on terror")To mccain's criticism of obama for the illinois democrat saying he would sit down for discussions with the nation's enemies.

Said biden, senate foreign relations chair who's known mccain the whole time the republican presidential nominee has been in the senate and therefore referred to him the way one would a buddy:

"John is more than wrong he is dangerously wrong.

"Ladies and gentleman, since when has talking to our enemy taken 'no' out of our vocabulary?Ladies and gentleman, it's amazing how little faith john mccain has in himself and his foreignpolicy team that they're afraid to sit down.We can still say no.We can still say no.'"

Biden's goal was at least two fold, to lay out like a prosecutor the case against on mccain.The other goal:And to get under mccain's skin, to throw him off his game, to jerk his chain enough so that mccain will respond to him on friday instead of obama.

Wasn't sen.Joe biden supposed to be the guy helping sen.Barack obama appeal to workingclass americans in places like ohio, w.Virginia, virginia and pennsylvania?

Biden clearly didn't advance the team with recent comments he made at a maumee, ohio campaign stop.He indicated he didn't support using coal to provide some of the nation's future energy needs, not even cleancoal technology.

This is clearly not the kind of comment that helps the obama campaign in the coalproducing regions of swing states.

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