I’m watching Oliver Burkeman at the <s>BBC</s> Guardian (I’m running for nothing!) as he liveblogs the debate. From his intro:
Following a week of embarrassing interview clips, and polls that look bad for McCain and for Palin specifically, expectations for the Republican running-mate seem so low that she has a serious chance of pulling off a victory of sorts tonight. On the other hand, various Alaskan politicians and others have been busy pointing out that, in the past, Palin has tended to do much better in debates than in other public-speaking contexts. Obama’s campaign manager David Plouffe pushed this notion as far as it would go today, drawing gales of laughter from the press corps when he claimed Palin was “one of the best debaters in American politics.” But this isn’t all one giant Machiavellian game of expectations management. The McCain campaign’s nervousness has been too acute and voluminous not to be real, and there’s no denying that the stakes tonight for Palin are enormously high.