“I mentioned in passing to Kerrey, as we walked on a tarmac, that I wouldn’t want to be a state senator debating him on the intricacies of Medicare and terrorism. “Neither would I,” he flatly replied.”
That was Bob Kerrey in his serious and moody New York Times interview back in June. Kerrey’s hometown paper followed him around, silently nodding as Kerrey said IMPORTANT THINGS.
And it was then that Kerrey set the debate bar as high as he possibly could for himself, particularly as far as how Deb Fischer would do against him.
And he failed miserably.
Yes, by Bob Kerrey’s own standards, miserably.
At no point in any of the three debates was Deb Fischer bloodied by a Kerrey jab. At no point was she left reeling by some amazing factoid that Kerrey threw out. And there sure as hell was no knockout, let alone a standing 8-count. (Or feel free to insert whatever sporting analogy you’re into. “His bowl never once touched Fischer’s wicket!”)
Did Kerrey hold his own? Well, to the extent he could, yeah we think so.
But that is not the standard that Kerrey set for himself. Or that Nebraskans should set. This is the guy who has been in the Governor’s office, in the Greatest Deliberative Body in the World, and famously out-debated Bill Clinton (some said).
But he couldn’t get the better of Deb Fischer on ObamaCare. Or Cap and Trade (wait, did Kerrey change his position on Cap and Trade mid-debate???). Or the Balanced Budget Amendment.
Of course, the problem for Kerrey is that he is on the wrong side on those issues, so good luck defending.
And he continued down the road on his goofy amending the Constitution gimmick. Which frankly, more than almost anything else, really shows the New Yorker in him. “Oh these Cornhuskers are so simple they’ll eat up this ‘I’m non-partisan’ crap I feed them. I’ll just act all homespunny and invoke George Norris’s name.” When anyone with common sense says, “What the hell is he selling? That’s the best he’s got? Really?”
Oh we expect more attacks from Kerrey and his camp. We have no illusion that Paul Johnson isn’t going to toss every nuke in his arsenal.
But his biggest problem is his outdated, New Yorker, cosmic candidate.
From whom Nebraskans have heard enough.
In the mean time Deb Fischer comes across as intelligent and well versed on the issues. She never once was caught off guard in the debates. She discussed the issues at both macro and micro levels. Oh, and she has a conservative record and sells that record as how she’ll vote. Amazing thing, that.
Funny how much easier it can be to sell something when you’re not trying to polish a piece of bark and pretend it’s gold. (Or if you’re Kerrey, “I don’t know! It may or may not be gold! I can’t tell if this piece of bark will turn into gold eventually! And neither can Deb Fischer! But what I’m telling you is that I’m willing to give it a chance and she’s has already pledged that she won’t even TRY!!!”)
And now we will wait for Kerrey’s October surprises.
Because we can guarantee he still thinks he can fool Nebraska.
We live-Tweeted the last night’s debate. See more here, if you’re interested.
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