BOSTON (CBS) – If you listened to Monday night’s second U.S. Senate debate on WBZ NewsRadio 1030 or watched it on this website, what you thought probably depends on how closely you’ve been following this race, and what your pre-existing bias is.
Listen to Jon’s commentary:
For the second straight debate, Scott Brown supporters surely thought he mopped up the floor with Elizabeth Warren; Warren backers likely thought their candidate shredded the senator, barn coat and all.
For partisans, debates are like date night with their true love – they only see the deep coral blue of his or her eyes, and don’t notice the lasagna stains on the shirt.
Those people already know who they’re voting for.
But what about the people who matter most at this point, the undecided or only loosely leaning voters who may have tuned in looking for a clue to help make up their minds?
What they saw last night was an entire first half-hour devoted to stuff they likely couldn’t care less about.
The Cherokee heritage story just doesn’t seem to be going anywhere, and if there’s any proof that Warren ever used it for unfair advantage, it’s not materializing.
Warren’s explanation of how she was really defending coal miners when she worked for the company they were suing is unconvincing, but that’s certainly no more damaging to her than her litany of cherry-picked votes Brown took in the Senate that look bad on paper is to him.
Brown had a good moment when he calmly reminded her that he wasn’t a student in her class; he had a bad moment when he cited arch-conservative Justice Scalia as his ideal justice, then tried to cover by citing the rest of the court too.
I suspect undecided voters came away from the whole thing still undecided. Both candidates seem up to the job. Neither comes across as too extreme in any meaningful way.
My hope for the final two debates is that they move past their talking points and give us the detail we need to make the right choice for our state on November 6.
You can listen to Keller At Large on WBZ News Radio every weekday at 7:55 a.m. and 12:25 p.m. You can also watch Jon on WBZ-TV News.