Sunday, August 12, 2007

CSPAN's Coverage of the Iowa Straw Poll

I watched the coverage from the time the event was just beginning in the auditorium. Of course there was an atmosphere of excitement in the building, there were a lot of motivated folks there to support their predetermined preferences.

My preference is of course Tom Tancredo. His message was very clear – stop immigration; preserve our heritage! Of course this is what appeals to me most about Tancredo, that he makes the linkage between our policy of open borders/easy citizenism, and the alarming rate at which we are losing our sense of who we are. And he does so without apology, as well he should in my opinion...

The coverage itself was left uncorrupted by a bunch of pundits giving their assessments of the individual candidates' messages. This I found to be extremely appealing because I'd really prefer to draw my own conclusions on each based on their individual messages, how well they delivered them, and so on and so forth.

Not that I haven't already determined who I like the best among the candidates, but there's something to be learned about them in the way that they deliver their messages. In the case of my preference (Tancredo), I thought he was less effective than he could have been with respect to the wider audience (those who decided to watch it with me on CSPAN) due to the fact that he kept stumbling over his words in what appeared to be a rush to get through his speech. Had Tancredo slowed down a bit in his delivery of the speech, I think it probably would have resonated more with the viewership, and/or, those who might watch the coverage at a later date. As far as his 4th place showing goes, I have a hard time believing he would have changed any votes with his delivery of the speech, irregardless of how good or bad it was.

As much as I would like for substance to rule the day over style, though; to govern one's own approach to the overall message offered of the individual candidates, I'm just not sure that people in general can separate style from substance. And I think this was the weakness in Tom's speech.

As far as Ron Paul goes, I understand that his wife had been hospitalized the day prior to the event, and that due to this fact he was rather exhausted. He did look a little tired, but as I've said before, I don't care for the libertarian underpinnings of his message. Were I capable of taking the messages in his speech at face value, I would say that Paul has a lot to offer. But since it's not possible for me to lay aside his other speeches and writings, and the underlying libertarian message that is always present therein, I'd have to say that Paul's speech appealed to me very little.

These are just a few of my thoughts as to what I witnessed during the coverage of the event which was strictly limited to that which was held in the auditorium. Any additional thoughts from those of you who watched the event with me?...