Dead Blogging The Massachusetts Gubernatorial Debate

How boring was the final (maybe) debate in the Massachusetts governor’s race?

This boring: You couldn’t even get a decent drinking game out of it.

I blame Charlie Gibson. Entirely.

Gibson presided over a rambling hour of been-there-heard-that with the avuncular forbearance of a school monitor at recess.

Representative sample of the candidates’ offerings:

Gov. Deval Patrick (D-Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood) told of visiting a jobs club (“Do you know what a jobs club is? I knew you would.”) at an IHOP (“Do you know what IHOP stands for? I knew you would.”)

Charlie Baker (R-Get Off My Lawn) said he’s all about “what I call the people who pay the bills.” Memo to Charlie: That’s what they call themselves too.

Tim Cahill (I-Love A Tea Party) played to the cheap seats all night long, opposing gun control (while styling himself a straight shooter) and promoting Arizona-style immigration policies (while styling himself a man of the people).

Jill Stein (GR-You Still Listening?) did what she’s done every debate: Start strong, finish weak.

Outside of those startling developments, the only other notable element was this:

Charlie Gibson forgot to ask the candidates what their sign is.

Gibson’s lightning round was lamer than Mark Teixeira (Y-Hamstring Pull). From the Boston Herald’s recap:

It devoted a large chunk of time quizzing candidates on offbeat preferences, including their favorite movie star, most prized and overrated virtue, a book they’re currently reading, their most recent indulgence and positive points about their rivals.

I’m not sure it actually was a “large chunk of time.”

It just felt that way.

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4 Responses to Dead Blogging The Massachusetts Gubernatorial Debate

  1. cj says:

    “It devoted a large chunk of time quizzing candidates on offbeat preferences, including their favorite movie star, most prized and overrated virtue, a book they’re currently reading, their most recent indulgence and positive points about their rivals.”

    That question really doesn’t offer me any insight into the personality of the candidate. What do you expect from a medium obsessed with happy talk, giggling anchors, and the ever present cute animal story of the day? Just report the damn news, and save me from the cutesy inflection in your voice.

  2. Steve Stein says:

    It did seem like 2 separate events chopped up and pasted into one. There were the substantive discussions, which I thought were pretty good – Gibson posed some pointed questions and the resulting conversation had more than just talking points. Then there was the fluff, tossed in as if it was a “palate cleanser”. I was waiting for the “if you were a tree, what kind of tree would you be?”

    So I rate the debate 2/3 pretty good, 1/3 pretty awful. Edit that sucker and you’d come up with a great 30-minute show.

  3. Laurence Glavin says:

    I fear for Charlie Gibson. We know what national figure moderated the final goobernatorial debate four years ago: Tim Russert. If I were Charlie, I wouldn’t buy any green bananas.

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