Mid-debate update

The woman is too businesslike, the man is too emotional. Nice counter-stereotyping. Plus: Clinton, Edwards regret their votes on early bankruptcy bill.

By Joan Walsh
January 17, 2008 7:37AM (UTC)
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Clinton's too businesslike, Edwards is too emotional, Obama is disorganized. That's how the three candidates described their own worst flaws. I like it -- counter-stereotyping.

Asked about the sudden influx of foreign capital into American lending institutions, Clinton expresses concerns about "sovereign wealth funds," arms of foreign governments now bailing out American banks in the wake of the mortgage crises. Edwards changes the subject slightly to the concentration of wealth in the hands of a few. Obama says it's about the lack of an energy policy.


Russert asks a good question: With bankruptcies up 40 percent, does Edwards regret voting for a 2001 bankruptcy law that was a precursor to the 2005 law many blame for hurting working-class voters? Edwards is unequivocal: "I should not have voted for that bankruptcy law." Asked the same thing, Clinton says, "Sure," but notes it never became law, and that she voted against the 2005 law that did. Only Obama got to say: "I opposed them both," shades of Iraq.

Joan Walsh

Joan Walsh is the author of "What's the Matter With White People: Finding Our Way in the Next America."

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2008 Elections