Cheney, Edwards Take Debate Arguments To The Stump In Florida
Vice President Cheney and Sen. John Edwards each sought to capitalize on their debate performance on Tuesday night in appearances in the battleground state of Florida yesterday. The Orlando Sentinel reports Cheney and Edwards "left battleground Ohio and made a beeline to Florida, largest of the presidential toss-up states." Cheney "held a town hall meeting in Tallahassee today before heading to Gainesville to meet with community leaders," while Edwards made his first post-debate campaign stop a rally in West Palm Beach. Their comments garnered attention not only from Florida television, but from newspapers nationwide. The Los Angeles Times, for example, reports Cheney and Edwards "replayed their squabbling at long distance, each suggesting they got the better of the other."
Biggest VP Debate Television Audience Since 1992.
The CBS Evening News reports Cheney and Edwards drew "more than 43 million viewers watched their one and only joint appearance last night, drawing twice as many viewers as the vice presidential debate four years ago."
Cheney Inadvertently Directed Audience To Anti-Bush Web Site.
The NBC Nightly News reported in the debate last night, Vice President "urged viewers to go to a website he identified as Factcheck.com. What he meant was Factcheck.org, which is run by the Annenberg Center. If you log on to Factcheck.com, you are automatically redirected to the billionaire and Bush-Cheney nemesis George Soros. It has the headline, 'Why We Must Not Re-Elect President Bush.'"
GOP Questions Bias In CBS Debate Polls.
Most media pundits called last night's Cheney-Edwards debate either a draw or a Cheney victory. ABC's post-debate poll found that among 500 who watched, 43% thought Cheney won while 35% thought Edwards did. CBS, however, reported its poll found 41% called Edwards the victor while only 29% thought Cheney came out on top. A CBS News source told the US News Bulletin its poll was conducted of 178 registered but "uncommitted" voters before and after the debate. Besides pointing out that this is a ridiculously small sample, Republicans are very dubious about the standard used by CBS to decide these were neutral voters. A GOP pollster found the CBS poll quite questionable, but said the obvious inaccuracies might be due to the very small number of people polled. "CBS would have huge margin of error...making it meaningless," said the pollster. Other Republicans saw more than a small sample at issue. "These instant polls matter. They help create momentum for the perceived winner and it's hard to believe this CBS poll was just some accident especially considering how much airtime they gave it. There is no doubt that the first poll [from the Bush-Kerry debate which also included a small sample of CBS-labeled "undecideds"] was out of line with reality," said a GOP strategist. "Maybe they're just polling the staff at CBS News and 60 Minutes."