Many people thought Senator Kamala Harris would be a formidable foe for Vice President Mike Pence at the debate last night.
Our side tends to have little confidence in our candidates. There were reports floating around that Pence had not practiced at all and his staff were deeply worried.
Then you have our distrust of moderators – realistically so. All of them end up being Democrats with a pitch from Left field every time. Susan Page last night did not disappoint. Her first question thrown at Pence was made to have him defensive from the start. “The coronavirus is not under control,” she insisted, then spewing out all the bad numbers and ignoring any progress. This left the door open for Kamala to come in and declare that the response was “the greatest failure of any administration ever!”
Most every subsequent question was similarly loaded against Trump and Pence. Page, who is so deep into the party that she wrote a biography of Nancy Pelosi, tried to corral Pence into the ridiculous two minute answer format. Pence blew past her objections time and again in a polite way to make his point.
And he made his points and more throughout the 90 minutes.
Harris, by contrast, only had attack points. She offered very little in solutions.
Other observations about Harris:
1. Her head shaking and smirking, looked snarky and that didn’t serve her well.
2. Is that whiny voice a side effect of apparent plastic surgery? Can she get some of her money back? Would you like to listen to that for four years or more? Her husband has to, but we don’t.
3. How many times can you answer a question by beginning “first of all”?
4. Her nickname, “Heels Up Harris,” birthed from her reputed affairs used to bolster her up the political ladder, has its drawbacks. That approach has been used by women throughout history, but it doesn’t season. you for the tough questions.
5. Harris is true to her home state of California. She loved acting and used it throughout the debate. Maybe there was too much acting. She knew to look in the camera, bat her eyes and attempt to connect with viewers. Maybe a few more acting classes will help. I’m sure there are plenty of
Hollywood people ready to assist.
6. No wonder she’s not been busy on the campaign trail. She doesn’t come off well.
7. is really a subsidiary of No. 1. You can’t laugh your way out of a question.
8. It was shocking how all attack Harris was. Very few policy ideas made it out of her.
9. Harris exudes deep Karen vibes, as some on twitter correctly noted.
Pence by contrast looked confident and cool. He got off to a bit of a slow start, but soon hit his stride.
Moderator Susan Page tried the same trick on him that Wallace used on Trump. She would cut him off just as he was getting to his point. Sometimes he overtalked her and other times he used his next chance to return to his point.
He did this most effectively with the Supreme Court question. He directly asked Harris if they would pack the Court, something Page should have asked. Harris ducked, but Pence persevered and she never answered – an answer itself, as he said.
Same thing with taxes, the Green New Deal, reported slurs by Trump on the military, fracking and China. Page tried to shut him down, but he returned to the issue and to Harris’ manipulation and evasion.
Many will say that Pence should be a model for Trump in his next debate. True, he did well. It’s unfair, though, to compare the two. Trump has his own style, as does Biden. Biden is much more slick in his debate style than the newer-to-the-game Harris. He attacks, interrupts and name calls because the moderator will let him do it. Trump has figured out that Biden will try to steam roll him and refuses to let that happen.
The next debate is in Miami a week from today. Steve Scully of C-Span will be the moderator. Again, we’re faced with a Democrat. Scully even worked as an intern for Biden.
If it happens. The debate commission wants to do it virtually. Trump is resisting that. For good reason. Biden would be unmonitored and receiving help from all quarters. He plagiarizes and cheats and would do so again.