The First Debate:
Kerry spoke about the war in Iraq and repeatedly assured the American people that he supported the war based on the same intelligence that Bush was given, but that Kerry would have not made any mistakes at all.
Kerry told the audience that being "certain" and not flip-flopping is not necessarily a good thing. Instead, flip-flopping is preferable to consistency.
Kerry told the American people that America's foreign policy cannot be made in the US, but needs to pass a "global test," i.e., first to obtain a stamp of approval from countries like France.
And, to enlist the help of France and other countries, according to Kerry, all that is needed is to simply hold a conference. Then, Kerry explained, the US would have the necessary approval to defend itself and conduct the war against terrorism.
Kerry repeated the idea that we must kowtow to the Muslim world, which has managed to isolate America, according to Kerry. He was very concerned with America's image in the Muslim world, rather than demanding that the Muslim world be more concerned with their own image in the eyes of America. Kerry completely neglected to mention that the Muslim world is the source of anti-American terrorism.
President Bush emphasized that Kerry's position constantly changed based on politics, and pointed out that Kerry sent "mixed messages" that have harmed America's standing in the eyes of the world.
Bush made the point that Kerry's attacks on the Iraq war and Kerry's statement that this is the "wrong war in the wrong country for the wrong reasons" is demoralizing our troops in Iraq, who would not be able to respect Kerry as commander-in-chief.
Bush also explained that the US is backed by a coalition of 30 countries and that Kerry belittled countries like Australia and Poland whose troops are serving in Iraq, as an example of Kerryâ€™s lack of understanding of international relations.
Overall, neither candidate shined. Those who support Kerry seemed to think that Kerry won. Those who support the President, think that the President won.
I see it as a tie.
But in a tie, the President prevails.