9:34 CDT: [Nate] The media who wants to cop out from picking a winner will probably just say “Obama wins first half, McCain wins second half”. But the first half is likely to matter more because (i) it was about the economy and (ii) this was a boring debate that will have a lot of people zoning out by the end.
9:30 CDT: [Sean] On CNN’s tracker McCain is having trouble with independents in some of these answers as the dial goes under the median.
9:26 CDT: [Nate] Odd that McCain paused on answering Lehrer’s 9/11 question. Was that for dramatic effect, or did he not prep that question in advance?
9:25 CDT: [Nate] Maybe, Sean. McCain chuckles = Gore sighs?
9:17 CDT: [Sean] But McCain looked angry and unpresidential. His temper was clearly triggered. That matters more than the substance of the argument. How you sound, how you look…
9:16 CDT: [Nate] That Ahmadinejad sequence was the first one I think McCain has won all night.
9:12 CDT: [Sean] Obama: “I mean, Spain!” That went under McCain’s skin, comes back with “Obama seal” card. Obama is doing more initiating of these barbs.
9:10 CDT: [Sean] It is striking how much Obama is looking at McCain confidently and how McCain will not look at Obama.
9:05 CDT: [Nate] There’s almost a reversal of roles tonight: McCain’s answers are contemplative and long-winded, Obama’s are much more direct.
9:02 CDT: [Sean] McCain plays “subcommittee meetings” card again.
9:00 CDT: [Sean] They both wear bracelet memorials, McCain gets there first.