Republican National Convention Thoughts…Doubledown on Personality

Posted: September 10, 2008 by Rick Hogaboam in Politics
Tags: , , ,

I know this is coming late…but better late than never. Anyhow, here are my thoughts on the shindig from last week.

1. Ratings – there is some dispute about the exact specificity of the ratings, but it is clear that the Republican Convention was viewed more heavily than the Democratic Convention. I was actually surprised. What is really shocking is that McCain drew more viewers than Obama.

2. Media Coverage – I jumped around between CNN, Fox News, ESPN and MSNBC. I would rate the coverage from CNN and Fox as excellent, with ESPN coming in second and MSNBC coming in dead last. That’s right, ESPN’s coverage of the convention (there was none) was better than the MSNBC team of Olberman and Matthews. I am not shocked to see that MSNBC just ousted Olberman and Matthews from election coverage…go figure. I loved Olberman when he was a sportscaster in Los Angeles and admittedly do like watching some of his Countdown show, but do hate his snide and arrogant attitude at times, especially when he tries to imitate other people’s voices. He also stretches the truth into innuendo into lies at times.

3. Joe Lieberman – He is a faithful friend, but I can’t help but suspect he is revelling in his stature after being dissed by his own party in the Senate primary in his last election when the party supported another Democrat challenger to his seat.

4. Fred Thompson – basically said what he was told to say…I think he has some experience sticking to the script.

5. Rudy Guiliani – came out with some big punches…a few below the belt in my estimation. Pretty arrogant for a guy who failed miserably at his own campaign and constantly reminds people of 9/11. Though he succeeded at being the bulldog, it is sad to see that he has been reduced to as much.

6. Mike Huckabee – he was hilarious and I simply like this dude. Madonna has used Huck’s image in a video montage in her concert, comparing him to Hitler. He took a little jab back, dissing her wardrobe. After laughing, I was thinking to myself, “Why would my man Huck even know what a Madonna costume change looks like?”. Huck is funny and inspirational and his attacks are filled with sarcasm…not vicious. He isn’t foaming at the mouth and screaming like that guy named Howard Dean, who is the head of the Democratic party by the way. Huckabee injected some levity and humor…good for him.

6. Super Sarah Palin – she is a good speech-giver, especially after learning that her telepromptor was going berserk. She came off as strong or arrogant, depending on how you think of her. It was a do-or-die for her and it is no surprise that McCain raised a bunch of money afterwards. It also appears that the Palin-McCain bump has exceeded Obama’s short-lived bump. McCain is polling at even or ahead by up to 10 points in one recent poll.

7. John McCain – Finally some humility. I was touched at how McCain reflected on his time in Hanoi not in a triumphant inspiring fashion, but rather in a subdued and painfully honest demeanor. He talked about what that time did his his soul and psyche. I’m glad he did…I have honestly been getting sick and tired of all his surrogates constantly praising his 5 year imprisonment. I, the son of a grandpa who served in WWII and a father who served in Vietnam, appreciate such service. My grandpa would have to be forced to share war stories with me as I prodded him when a little kid. I look back and see such humility in my grandpa over his service, which is a strong testimony of patriotic service. When McCain said that he hated war and what it did for his dad and himself, I was touched. He is no Bush-Cheney war-hawk who haven’t seen the battlefield, but one was has seen the horrors of war and has a kinship with those who risk their lives everyday on the battlefield.

Anyhow, the rest of the McCain speech was pretty blah until the end when he crescendo-ed in asking that we would fight with him. Obviously this was designed to play off of the whole “fighting patriot” persona. It appears to me that the Republicans are really trying to engage Obama in a personality clash. They are doubling-down that the American public will “like” McCain-Palin more than Obama-Biden. We’ll see what the house lays done come November.

  1. Jon Rising says:

    You said: “MSNBC just ousted Olberman and Matthews from election coverage”

    Although, I wish that were so, Olbermann and Matthews have simply been demoted. They will appear on MSNBC’s election night coverage, but neither will be the anchor. David Gregory is going to anchor MSNBC’s election night coverage.

    Thankfully, MSNBC’s low ratings finally resulted in some brakes being put on the runaway Olbermann-Matthews locomotive.

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