7:03 (All times Mountain) I hope they do the candidate introductions twice this time around. I promised myself, tonight I’d remember everybody’s names.
7:05 Already I don’t miss Chris Matthews. I bet I’m not the only person to say that – tonight or any night.
7:07 McCain looks a lot less Ho-Ahh! tonight, compared to a couple weeks ago. Does that mean he’s on or off his meds?
7:08 Thompson looks like he’s playing under a handicap – answering questions while drinking a glass of water. With a live ferret in it. Could he be more uncomfortable?
7:09 “Mitt Romney – will paint any car for $99.95!”
7:11 Brownback – you’ll forgive me here for being serious – seems to be making a good point, and making it well. However, I doubt I’ll remember it, or him, by tomorrow morning.
7:13 Rudy looks like he took McCain’s vitamins from the last debate. IE, a lot more confidence-inspiring than the last time around. Only, you know, without all the manic gestures. After what I thought was a big stumble, he could be making a nice comeback.
7:15 Tancredo’s tie is so red, it doesn’t even have a pattern on it. We’ll call that look, “I am so a serious candidate.”
7:16 Ron Paul was just asked if he was running for the nomination of the wrong party. Why didn’t he just say “Maybe,” then smile at the camera for the rest of his time? It would’ve been perfect.
7:17 Who is that guy who isn’t Tancredo or Brownback?
7:18 Who is that guy who isn’t that guy who isn’t Tancredo or Brownback?
7:19 Who is that guy who isn’t the two other guys or Tancredo or Brownback?
7:20 “Mitt Romney – your first choice for professional labiaplasty!”
7:22 Best play of the night so far: McCain running to the right while backpedaling his anti-Bush-tax-cut vote. And he didn’t look awkward doing it. 4.2 difficulty multiplier, and even the East German judge gave him a 9.8.
7:24 Best line of the night so far: “Spending money like John Edwards at a beauty shop.” It’s from one of those interchangeable guys wearing a dark suit and red (or maybe blue-ish) tie.
7:25 Rudy is showing his amateur side again, if he really thinks Washington is easier to tame than NYC. Split decision, at best.
7:27 Thompson is bragging that he has over 1,900 vetoes. To that, all I can do is finish my second martini in one big, icy gulp. Back after a refill…
7:30 Strangest coincidence of the night: The live ferret’s name? Ron Paul.
7:33 Say hello to my little friend, Third Martini.
7:36 If I’d have known there would be commercial breaks, I would’ve waited to make my cocktail. If I had known the webcast break would be filled with overly-earnest college students – dressed like candidates, no less – I’d have made tequila shooters.
7:37 One of the overly-earnest college students (easy to pick out, with the short hair and red tie) talked about “Duncan Hunter.” Is that a real candidate?
7:39 The question to Rudy is, “you’re pro an awful lot of gay stuff, huh?”
7:40 The follow up question is, “I mean really, really gay.”
7:42 Rudy claims that abortions went down 16% while he was Mayor of NYC. During that same time, Bill Clinton spent most of his time hundreds of miles to the south, in Washington, DC. Coincidence?
7:43 What happened to Crazy McCain from a couple weeks ago. I kinda miss that flailing, shouting madman.
7:44 Impressive, cutting taxes 94 times. Now if only I knew who he was.
7:45 “Mitt Romney – the name you can trust for industrial-strength air purification!”
7:46 Drunk and frustrated moment of the night: It’s not the ’80s. Reagan is dead. Let’s move on.
7:48 Upstairs, I can hear the baby shouting, screaming, and struggling against Melissa as she tries to get him to go to sleep. He seems more comfortable than Thompson.
7:50 It’s all-abortion talk, all the time. Bored now.
7:53 “Mitt Romney – just a dab’ll do ya!”
7:56 McCain probably shouldn’t brag about how close he is to making a deal – making a deal in a Congress even less popular that Bush is.
7:58 “Mitt Romney – now has tanning salons in eight convenient locations all around town!”
7:59 If I’m not mistaken, McCain just hit Romney, and hard. And right in the pee-pee, too.
8:00 Rudy just thanked whoever it was that accused of of “being soft” “on anything.” Heh.
8:01 “KZ” comments, “Quite a contrast from the two previous debates on MSNBC. Fox news appears to be run by competent adults.” Strange, from the network that practically invented shouting. Strange – but true.
8:03 “Knock on the front door because the back door is closed.” I got distracted and didn’t catch what he was talking about, but I’m pretty sure it was something other than personal lubricant.
8:04 Paul is so quaint, quoting a George Washington doctrine that was outdated by the end of the 19th Century, much less the 20th. Also, did I hear correctly. Did Paul just blame 9/11 on the No Fly Zones? Did he freaking really?
8:05 Thank you Rudy, for punching Paul in the mouth. Or at least, unlike anybody else on that stage, saying something back to him.
8:08 We’re talking about parole hearings? What’s Mike Dukakis doing at a Republican debate?
8:10 I got a lot of laughs at the last debate, talking about “knife-wielding spider monkeys jacked up on Mini Thins.” I just didn’t expect anybody to take me seriously. I swear, all Tancredo is missing is the knife.
8:12 Worst move of the night: FNC going back to the overly-earnest college students. Why isn’t some smart producer over there reading VodkaPundit?
8:14 Attention, Griff Jenkins: A TV career? Really? That’s like getting me a job at a rehab center. Well done!
8:17 It could be the third martini, but it seems like Brit Hume’s last question was longer than the Ron Paul’s Giant List of Things I Blame America For. And McCain, known for his admirable anti-torture stance, is just as convoluted in answering. Or so my martinis tell me. This is not McCain’s night.
8:18 “Mitt Romney – can save you up to 15% on auto insurance!”
8:19 Technical error of the night: In the future, all candidates will be Krystal Reid.
8:21 Mitch Huckleson sure sounds tough when it comes to retaliating against terrorists.
8:25 From now on, all those candidates I can’t tell apart will be called “Jim Beam.” But even without knowing their real names, each of them sounds better on terror than any of the Democrats except for Hillary Clinton. I’ll try and keep that in mind, any time it occurs to me what a weak field the Republicans have for 2008.
8:26 Ron Paul: America can so retaliate! Even though we were asking for it!
8:27 Tancerdo: “I’m looking for Jack Bauer.” We all are, buddy. We all are.
8:29 The question is, “How come you’re all so white? Except for Rudy, who is maybe gay?” Who hid Opie and Anthony under Chris Wallace’s hairpiece?
8:31 “Mitt Romney – nobody beats his price on your brand-new Isuzu!”
8:32 It’s over! It’s really over! I’ll have a wrap in just a few.
8:33 But first, I’m going to take some Valium and try to scruff Gripp Jenkins out of my brain.