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Hostage Tape. [Updated]

Uh oh.

The speech was much worse than I expected.

I'll be surprised if it moves polls up two points. I won't be surprised if it drops the polls five points. I think this was a disastrous speech. Mr. Bush looked like he was making a hostage tape and he sounded an awful lot like he was announcing an open-ended expansion of the war into Iran and Syria. The same old warnings, the same 911 nonsense, more eye-rolling promises of Iraqi government behavior. No real acceptance of personal responsibility or mistakes. Non-credible promises of bi-partisnaship. Vague talk of expanding the army and recruiting civilians into . . . what, exactly?

A grim, scared, desperate and still dishonest performance.

Not good.

[Update.] Dick Durbin just gave the Democratic response. Durbin is an opportunistic twit. But he sounded much more convincing than the president. The Democrats now have their clear contrast with the president and I'd be willing to bet 70% of those watching will prefer Durbin's message which, boiled down is, "Hey, we've done enough for those people, they're on their own."

[Update 2] Barack on MSNBC picks up the "we've done enough" theme. He won't take Olbermann's bait and buy into a funds cut-off but he's opening the door to a resolution de-authorizing the war. He sounds good, more knowledgeable than you'd expect from a junior senator. He's pushing the "realist" vs. "ideologue" dichotomy. He sounds sane as contrasted with the president who looked and sounded like a man who needs a long vacation.

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“Hostage Tape. [Updated]”

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    GWB has managed to turn the Democrats into the party of steely realism and fiscal responsibility. WTF? A difficult task, to be sure, but something he's managed to do. Talent on loan from God, I guess.

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