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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

So Who Won the Debate?

Edwards is well ahead in both the Daily Kos and MyDD quickie polls as of midnight, which means at most that liberal blog-readers liked his answers and style. But there won’t be any ‘scientific’ polls asking a representative sample who won, and good debate performance is only one part of a successful campaign anyway.
It’s pretty clear, however, that fairness did not win, according to a statistical analysis conducted by the Dodd campaign. Here’s the time and question tally for the first half of the debate, as reported by Salon:
CLINTON 9:25, 9 questions
OBAMA 8:19, 9 questions
RICHARDSON 7:23, 6 questions
EDWARDS 7:06, 8 questions
BIDEN 4:45, 5 questions
DODD 4:00, 4 questions
GRAVEL 2:59, 5 questions
KUCINICH 2:28, 3 questions
Somehow, the remaining debates have to do a better job of letting all candidates get fair coverage.
UPDATE: The Dodd campaign’s tally, presumably for the entire debate is now up. The tally provided for time only: Obama 16:00; Clinton 14:26; Edwards 11:42; Richardson 10:48; Kucinich 9:02; Dodd 8:28; Biden 7:48; Gravel 5:37.
Perfect equality of “face time” is impossible to achieve in any debate format. But a ten plus minute gap between the top time-user and the last-ranking participant is too much.

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