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Rating Barack Obama - Debate Scoreboard for the 2008 Democratic Race

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Rating Barack Obama - Debate Scoreboard for the 2008 Democratic Race

Photo of Sen. Barack Obama: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Follow the links for more info about each event.

Des Moines Register debate on Dec 13, 2007 - Barack Obama was honest, forthright, fair, respectable, competent, family-oriented, religious, and very bright, but seen by detractors as inexperienced, mild, too intellectual, naive, and short on policy specifics.

CNN Debate in Las Vegas, November 15, 2007, moderated by Wolf Blitzer - Barack Obama consistently offered thoughtful, brilliant responses, and appropriately challenged Sen. Clinton when her soundbites were misleading. I cheered loudly in agreement when Sen. Obama...

NBC News/Philadelphia Debate, October 30, 2007, moderated by Brian Williams, Tim Russert - As he intellectualized and yakked and promised the media ahead of the debate, Barack Obama came out swinging at Hillary Clinton. Sort of. Eventually. Softly at first, morphing into medium-strength...

ABC News/Iowa Debate, August 19, 2007, moderated by George Stephanopoulos - Sen. Obama demonstrated a firm, mature grasp of the issues, and resisted the politico urge to speak in angry tones or rehearsed slogans. Obama actually answered questions...

CNN-YouTube Debate, July 23, 2007, moderated by CNN's Anderson Cooper - At last, a format that allows Barack Obama to display his quick wit and intellect, and his quasi-rock star presence. CNN focus groups interviewed after the program named him the candidate who most understood their issues.

PBS-Howard University debate, June 28, 2007, moderated by Tavis Smiley - Sen. Obama gave intelligent, thoughtfully nuanced answers. His insights were unique and progressive, yet moderate. Sen. Obama is a brilliant man, as well as a likeable, mature person. But Sen. Clinton was clearly in-charge on that stage.

California Democratic Convention, April 28-29, 2007 - Obama delivered a superbly uplifting speech that brought the delegates to their feet time and time again. He spoke unvarnished truth to power on the Iraq War, on education, on price-gouging by Big Pharma, and on torture...

DNC Winter Kick-Off Meeting, February 1-3, 2007 - I respect that Sen. Obama is not one to pander to a particular crowd. His no-frills approach was appropriate and, frankly, a welcome relief from the gamesmanship of US political campaigns. I respect that he didn't bait his hungry Democratic audience into a frenzy with cheap-cliche manipulation. But the senator's staff needs to remind him that dour rarely wins the day, much less the election.

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