I think for the respective bases, each liked their guy. It certainly wasn't the obvious victory that Kerry had over Dumbya last week. I think for undecideds, the foreign policy section was probably close to a draw, although I suspect the women voters Kerry needs to cement preferred Edwards. On domestic issues, Edwards won hands down. Cheney's dodge of the jobs question was classic, and Edwards pointing that out was nicely done. Edwards actually segued nicely into the domestic issues by reciting Cheney's Neanderthal voting record in the Congress as he responded to Cheney's critique of his voting record instead of scoring points for Dubya. You may remember, Edwards had gotten under Cheney's skin regarding Halliburton, causing Cheney to attack Edwards instead of scoring some points on the suicide bomber scenario Edwards had handed him. I suspect Edwards scored well with persuadable women which Kerry needs to reestablish the typical Dem advantage.
The talking heads on MSNBC are too deep inside the beltway to get it. Ron Reagan knew better, but is too much of milquetoast to fight the crowd. I've never seen more out of touch morons, but then again, I don't hang out in "Rush Rooms", if they still exist, or Republican functions. Cheney intimidates them and they have a different sense of what plays to whom. I doubt most undecideds were impressed with his scowl, his hands in front of his mouth, or his passing up opportunities to even speak. At least hit your talking points, provided you have more than "Kerry's not a real man."
Edwards also realized he was in a key swing state and, when possible, tied his answers to Ohio. Not so much that it was obvious as pandering, but perhaps enough to be local soundbites. Smart move, unnoticed by most TV pundits.
Cheney was caught in a few lies, which needs to be hammered relentlessy as part of a patttern of deception. Also, this issue needs to be put in proper perspective:
Cheney said Edwards diminished the Iraqi sacrifice by not including their deaths in those of "coalition" losses. (We'll ignore the fact that the "coalition" has killed more innocent Iraqi civilians than insurgents for now.) Well, Cheney diminishes the sacrifice of AMERICAN soldiers by cooking the books and including Iraqis as members of the "coaltion". What country is he running in? Enron-like accounting. Halliburton-like accounting. Minimizing the loss of American lives for political purposes. Disgusting.
Spread these memes. We won tonight. Round three...