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Friday, September 26, 2008

Obama Campaign Memo: Debates Are Not A Good Format For Obama

[Update] Live blogging event for the Mississippi presidential debate will be activated at 8:40 p.m. ET, at this link.

In what many are calling Team Obama's attempt to lower expectations about Barack Obama's debate performance tonight, the campaign has released a memo showing how McCain is hailed by pundits as a good debater and how debates are not a good format for Obama

The memo was sent to "interested parties" and "from the Obama campaign", with the re: listed as "Home-field advantage: John McCain," referring to the debate itself.

The site says "If it's 2pm the day of the debate, it must be an expectations-lowering memo."

The beginning of the memo lists the Obama's campaigns talking points about John McCain and the latter part of the memo shows different pundits and news organizations speaking to both candidate's debate performance capabilities and meant to show the "expectations" set out for both John McCain and Barack Obama.

The start with the header of "McCain Debate Performance", all in capital letters.

The Obama team memo shows recent articles from the New York Times on 9/23/08, saying "New York Times: A Review Of Debates Show That McCain Is Most Comfortable And Authentic When The Subject Is Foreign Policy," and showing a portion of the NYT article which said "review of several of Mr. McCain's debates shows that he is most comfortable and authentic when the subject is foreign policy. And in a stroke of good fortune, foreign policy is the topic for Friday, the first of three 90-minute debates with Senator Barack Obama, the Democratic nominee."

They list multiple examples like the one above from organizations like the International Herald Tribune on 9/23/08, The New Republic on 9/23/08, three pieces from the Atlanta Journal Constitution on 9/21/08, and lastly a piece from the New York Magazine on 9/21/08.

All articles listed speaking about McCain having the "edge" in the debate or McCain' entering the debate as a "substantive favorite."

Then the memo moves to the expectations for Barack Obama headlining that portion with "Obama Debate Performance" and directly under that in capital letters and in bold print, it states "DEBATES ARE NOT A GOOD FORMAT FOR OBAMA."

They list articles about Obama's debate expectations from media outlets like the New York Times on 9/23/08, Associated Press on 9/20/08, the Atlantic in September of 2008, and CNN on 8/22/08.

The Associated Press article declares that Obama comes across as "Lifeless, Aloof, And Windy," during debates and the Atlantic asserting that Obama has "Never Managed To "Receive Big Acclaim After A Debate," with CNN saying the Democrats are worried that Obama is "Professorial Or Too Subdued."

Those "interested parties" which received the memo are discussing whether a memo from team Obama, claiming Obama is very bad at debates and John McCain is very good at debates, was the image they wished to receive from the Obama campaign right before his first presidential debate.