Kerry will win the debate

The Bush team is 0-2, and there’s going to be pressure to give them a win just to make the series more interesting. But let’s not do that, OK? People were calling the VP debate a draw for that very reason, and the Republican spinners might have pulled it off if a lot of us hadn’t pointed out that Cheney lied over and over again.

Don’t be detached and fair-minded. This is about you and your future. Bush cannot win the debate because he has nothing to argue from. Bush has had a flood of bad news in the last week. Jobs, fiscal policy, Iraq — the facts are all against him

Don’t try to figure out what the American people think about the debate. You are part of “the American people” — make up your own mind, and then tell people what you think. The American people, or some of them, might be counting on you to help them decide. Give them what they need — don’t try to read their minds and repeat their opinion back to them.

If this were an eleventh-grade debate about the death penalty, it would make sense to score it as a performance. But it isn’t — this is about our lives.

The Republican spinners are desperate and they’re going to fight savagely. Show them no mercy.

I believe that in this debate, the next one, or afterward the Republicans are going to go Ann Coulter on us and accuse Kerry of treason or some equivalent. At that point, rather than standing there stunned or thinking things over in a philosophical way, we will have to turn our volume knobs up to eleven and cry foul as loud as we can. We’re going to see every dirty trick in the book, and we have to be prepared for all of them.