Sunday, November 13, 2011

Mark Halperin of Time gives Newt the best grade from Saturday's CBS debate

Mark Halperin of Timegave Newt the best grade from tonight's debate:

Style: Confident, droll, pure Newt. Avoided taking on his rivals, even when asked explicitly to do so, instead cleverly and honestly praising them (following the current Republican rules of combat and looking like a grown-up as a bonus). But showed a tendency to overdo the jargon.

Substance: His best debate yet at playing the smartest person on the stage. Gave a sweeping, point-by-point answer on how to deal with Iran.

His worst moment: None stood out.

His best moment: Lit up the room with his tough talk on the war on terror.

The main thing: Still flaunting his knowledge rather than taking on Romney. Seems to feel that Newt being Newt is enough to win — given his recent success and upswing — and that isn't a crazy notion. But he has done nothing to shore up his vulnerabilities, leaving him wide open when and if Mitt needs to go negative on the former Speaker.

Grade: A-

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