PBS Congressional Debate. So, how do you think it went?

I had a reader request this post, so I'm going to leave it wide open with little comment from me.

So, who do you think kicked tail? Bruce or Stephanie. Or did the libertarian show them both up?

The floor is yours.


Anonymous said…
I wouldn't actually call it a debate. I kinda feel sorry for Bruce and Larry. Obviously they forgot to do their homework on the issues.

Larry definitly was better at talking his way through the questions than Bruce.

Bruce's random comment "I love my mother" and his answer about his plan for long-term health care just confused me.

I found myself more inclined to actually watch the debate because I was anxious to see what the two guys would say next.

If the vote was held based on the debate: Herseth 90% Rudebusch 9% Whalen 1%
Anonymous said…
I was proud of Whalen on the pro-life issue. Queen Stephanie avoided directly adressing the issue. Larry tried to be Rodney King "Can't we all just get along?" Only Whalen was factual and direct on the issue.
Anonymous said…
Factual!! Direct!!! WHAT!?! Did you even watch the debate?? Whalen never even answered the questions. Quit sticking up for the man. Just open your eyes. Rewatch it when it airs and then you'll agree with me.
Anonymous said…
His eyes ARE open. The problem is his mind, which is clamped shut.
Anonymous said…
I was talking about the abortion question only. I was kid-sitting and that was the only section I saw. I will stick to my comment,Bruce actually talked about abortion. The other two did not.
Anonymous said…
Whalen was not ready for this debate. He looked lost and out of place. It was kind of sad. I really felt sorry for him.

It seems like the Republican leadership convinced him to put his name on the ballot and just left him hanging. It looked like he hadn't prepared for half the questions. The long term care question was awful. Stephanie talked about a bill she had written to address the problem, and Whalen just kept saying that we need to have elderly people move in with their kids. And then he said the weird "Mom, I love you" line.

I really felt bad for Bruce. Why didn't anyone from the party or from Thune's staff help him. We shouldn't let our guys twist in the wind like that.
Anonymous said…
Herseth was pretty good. She knows her stuff and had lots of facts. She talked about bills she sponsored and focused on her work in Congress. She mentioned votes she has broke from her party, and focused on her record (except for pointing out that Whalen supports privatizing Social Security). She was prepared and ready.

For a third party candidate, Larry did a decent job explaining the problem, but a poor job explaining the solution. He kept talking about reforming the monetary system, but I have know ideas what that actually means. He kept saying it was a problem - and he was convincing - but he never outlined how he'd make things better. He was surprisingly articulate, although I don't understand the whole monetary policy thing.

Bruce looked sad and stumbled more than once. Of the three, he was the least prepared. After about 20 seconds into an answer, he was really lost and just sort of rambled until time was up. He looked defeated, and very tired. He had some very bizarre statements about education like the importance of singing the ABC song and how we shouldn't be putting condoms on cucumbers. On health care, Herseth really outshined him. He tried to make every answer about abortion and right to life issues - including Social Security and other unrelated issues.
Anonymous said…
In case you didn't know, Whalen is pro-life. And he's pro-family.
Anonymous said…
I posted this earlier but as I slept on it and have the same thought...this guy (whalen) couldn't beat Napolean Dynamite's buddy Pedro in a student counsel race. He is simply an awful candidate.

Plus, I loved it when he said that Randy Frederick asked him to be the standard bearer for the party. Great. Randy and Bruce, leading us forward.

I'll go on.

First, Bruce is not well informed on the issues as he can not speak to most, other than as posted earlier that he loves his mother, loves you and loves children (and by extension hates abortion). Who's fault is this, PP. Is the candidate unable to assimilate information given to him and present himself in a semi-articulate manner on issues other than abortion and him mom? Or, is the campaign staff letting him down?

Second, this speaks sadly to the state of our discourse in SD. People are here, stating they support the guy. What? Pedro would be better for SD in Congress. This guy is a comic book rendition of a incompetent public official, not saying he's a bad guy or possibly even a little capable, but come on, stop it, wasn't, isn't there anyone better? This is it? Thanks Randy. Just don't vote for Herseth, but how on earth can anyone vote for this guy. UNDERVOTE.
Anonymous said…
Say what you will about Herseth, but she knows her stuff. She clearly understands how the issues relate to South Dakota, and she gave a number of examples of specific things she is doing in Congress to address the issues raised by the questions. She was civil and professional.

Both Larry and Bruce were out matched. Bruce started off trying to make some attack about PAC money she received, and started one question talking about how the questioner wasn't looking at him and how he wasn't prepared. Bruce tried to make every answer about abortion. Larry made every answer about monetary policy. Herseth answered every question.
Anonymous said…
PP, please post your thoughts after watching on re-broadcast. I can't wait to hear on any GOPer can think Whalen looked good. Larry came accross as nuts but still did better than Whalen.
Anonymous said…
Larry and Bruce were out of their element. Herseth outclassed them both.
Anonymous said…
Whalen is pro-life and he's pro-family!

Pro-life and pro-family = South Dakota Republicans!

So why isn't our party standing behind Whalen? Behind him with political support and MONEY! Why aren’t our Por-life Senators and Representatives out beating down doors for Mr. Whalen?

If your going to encourage someone to run would you at least have the whatever to FULLY support him until the end? Why should he expect anything but that from our party?

Whalen is pro-life and he's pro-family! That is the core of our Republican party right now! I am wondering if our Republican party leadership just left this young man twisting in the wind?

A lot of people in our Party believe that “pro-life and pro-family” is more than a campaign slogan!

If we as a Party ask this young man to run for political office then I do believe that we as a Party have the responsibility to fully support him! When I get from some of the posts above is that this Party support just didn’t take place.

I personally don’t think Mr. Whalen is ready for this political office. But if I asked him to run, he should expect and demand my full support! Again, why would he expect any less?
Anonymous said…
I think Whalen was the sacrificial lamb. The Reps knew no one could beat Stephanie, and therefore no one wanted to run and lose,which was almsot a certainty. Whalen agreed, the party accepted that, but when it came to support they gave him none. We talked with Whalen at the state fair and he said as much. I agree he should have had more support, at least in preparing for a debate.
Anonymous said…
Well the debate was a laughing matter for me to watch. I mean come on lets start off the first answer with saying hello to your family Whalen...not the best choice. And then the tax question he went off on Roe vs Wade....yep a court case from 1973 about abortion really has to do with taxes. Stephanie did absolutely amazing. And she did answer the abortion question because the actual question was "do you think candidates should take a public stand on the referred law 6 and if so what is your stand" She said that they should take a stand and that while she was not pro-abortion she was pro-choice and said that she could not know the circumstances that each woman faced and so on. Rudebusch was just funny as to how everything was an economic problem but he did a better job then Whalen. I will admit that I am a proud Herseth supporter and always have been, but the election this year is not putting a damper on this at all. As an incumbent she has nothing to gain in doing debates yet she is doing three(last one next Monday on KELOLAND) which are all in benefit of her opponents yet they can't even reasonably prepare for them. She is staying clean and out of the dirty politics that Whalen is involved in and she is an inspiration to women everywhere who want to make a move towards being active in public policy and government.I could go on and on, but I will stop there for now.
Anonymous said…
8:37, you are missing the point of earlier postings. There are literally thousands of reps. in this state who are pro-life and anti-gay rights (pro-family) and I'm sure you are not saying that anyone with those beliefs would do a better job in DC for SD than Herseth. Are you?
Anonymous said…
After watching the debate last night, can anybody explain why Whalen wanted to go through this 20 plus times. Herseth did him a BIG favor by not debating him a gazzilion times.

Do you Whalen fans, the two that might exist, still want to complain about the lack of debates?
Anonymous said…
VJ -- "pro-famiy" "pro-life" isn't enough because those are not the only national and international issues our Congress deals with! Get with it! We can't send a one (or two) issue candidate to Congress -- no matter how "Republican" we are!
Anonymous said…
I honestly think Whalen did alright, he has sort of an innocent country charm to him. And he did talk about many other issues than just abortion. Some of you may not think well enough to realize how these issues are all related.Herseth would be very wise to espouse the pro-life , pro-family views of Whalen and the economic views of Rudebusch. Only then could she be a truly great Representative.

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