Bush is the one who "can't hide"

By Mark Follman
Published October 9, 2004 8:23AM (UTC)
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While early "insta-polls" from ABC and Gallup essentially call round two of the debates a draw, Salon's Scott Rosenberg says the Bush camp, though perhaps feeling relatively relieved after their man's performance, is still on the losing end:

"I imagine the Bush people are happy tonight -- this debate wasn't the obvious rout the last one was. But I still think the essential dynamic here helps Kerry. The problem for Bush is simple: The more time he spends in front of the American people in a forum that is not handpicked and tightly controlled by his own handlers, the more it's clear that there's nothing more to Bush.

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"The time Bush spends in the spotlight diminishes him; the time Kerry spends in the spotlight enhances him. Since a political campaign can't hide the candidate, this leaves Bush in a bind. No wonder Kerry's strategists were willing to compromise on so many details of the debate formats to get Bush to commit to a third engagement."

Read the rest of Rosenberg's play-by-play of tonight's contest here.


Mark Follman

Mark Follman is Salon's deputy news editor. Read his other articles here.

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