Ben Nelson did not lose this debate and you can definitely argue that he “won” it. But in any case, he did not come out of it with a major gaffe or point that Ricketts can now hammer. That would make it a loss for Ricketts.
Ricketts, on the other hand, still needs to shore up the Republican base if he has any hope of winning in November. He may have helped that by showing the base that he can think on his feet and can develop ideas, in the ninety seconds given him in this format. It should have softened any negatives that may be harbored against him.
Or at least all that would be the case if ANYONE was watching or listening. Noon on a Friday? Are you kidding? Who has the time in the middle of the work day, to find a TV to sit in front of to catch this? Sure, maybe a few people who can listen to the radio all day had a shot, but even if you tried to catch it over the lunch hour, you probably missed the very beginning and end. And even the World Herald barely squeezed out an article about it— before going back to analyzing the two candidates’ ads.
We’ll do one more post to explore a few of the topics discussed and, particularly, the (attempted) zingers. The World Herald should do one of their little online polls to see how many people watched or listened to the debate. In that one, my money is on “I have no opinion.”