Live blogging at The Bagdad

Karol Collymore

5:03pm The line outside The Bagdad starts on SE 37th and wraps around the block. Thank goodness for my nerdy blogging.

5:20pm People are becoming very testy about a young woman saving a silly amount of seats. Its like Candidates Gone Wild, but with the SE Hawthorne liberal politeness. If her friends don't come soon, its not going to last that long.

5:24pm Apparently we've been set up in the handicapped section and people are swearing at us in a passive-aggressive style for being seated. I'm going to make Jeff throw his body in front of me if they attack.

5:31pm KOIN is broadcasting now and people are cheering. The woman in front of us still saving seats and it's not pretty.

5:37pm A woman just announced that there are no more seat savers. Sorry 'bout the bad luck, woman in front.

5:43pm Jeff is my beer daddy tonight because I don't travel with cash. Now I owe him.

5:50pm A twenty minute discussion will happen after the debate if folks want to stay. We've also been asked to be nice to our neighbors. People applauded, but I wonder how long the "nice" will hold up.

5:57pm It's almost GO time, people. I can hardly stand it. Good thing the tater tots are on the way.

6:00pm OMG, I'm so nervous. Don't let this clean, articulate girl down, Joseph Biden.

6:02pm Gwen Ifill, fellow Panamanian, looking lovely in turquoise. She's explaining the rules and I'm still nervous. People are applauding Gwen for reasons I'm not understanding because she's not saying anything crazy. Here comes the candidates. Sarah just said, "Hey! Can I call you Joe?" That was really cute, honestly.

6:04pm Bailout question: Worst or best of Washington? Hit at economic policy right away by Joe. He talks about his boss, Barack Obama. Oh ya, it's Baracktober.

6:07 pm Apparently, Sarah thinks that John McCain really suspended his campaign. And she also thinks that he made some sort of difference with the bailout. People are really hissing Sarah. I feel bad for the R bloggers. She wants us to get down to business!

6:09pm Joe six packs, hockey moms say "never again" to the federal government. Thanks Sarah. She's really rolling with the folksy talk.

6:13pm That "ah shucks" thing is getting old, Sarah.

6:14pm Joe is calling Sarah OUT for not answering the question about deregulation. Sarah won't answer, she wants to talk about taxes. Sarah just said she's not answering the questions, she's going to talk straight to the American people. WTF and LOL. Gwen smack down on time limits. Now wants to talk about taxes as class warfare. Excellent question.

Joe said paying your fair share is patriotic. I couldn't agree more. Are we all supposed to live in this country and not be responsible for ourselves and each other? What does she think pays for her fire department? What does she think pays her salary? It's unbelievable to me that she blasts government and she's the leader of a state.

6:20pm I don't want to have to find and pay for my own health care, Sarah. $5000 tax credit won't even cover half a year. FYI: Getting a birth control device, covered insurance cost me $500. That's OK, Joe is telling us the truth on McCain's health plan and how he plans to pay for it - taxes. Now Joe is telling us about how him and Baracktober are going to give us some health care.

Dude, is Sarah Palin just reading off a piece of paper?

6:25pm Sarah is using "like" again. She's really a smooth talker, though. Did she know that McCain didn't support a windfall profit tax like she did in her own state? Joe really took her to task on that one. The guys next to me are saying, "SMACK!"

Sarah is talking about putting the campaign aside again. Bankruptcy bill. Sarah doesn't want to answer it. She wants to bring it back to energy. People in the crowd are LOLing. Sarah called Joe an "East Coast politician." Again, WTF? I want her to discuss bankruptcy!!!

6:32pm What is Sarah saying about climate change? Her entire ramble didn't make any sense. Joe just told her if you don't know what causes it, you can't fix it. The crowd roars. Now he's giving practical advice about how to fix climate change. Sarah is talking about LNG. Portlanders don't like LNG. And she just called Joe "O'Biden." And she said "nucular." Uh-oh.

6:37pm Joe is cheering on the GLBT community! Equal rights under the Constitution! Sarah says no way, man. But, she's got gay friends!!! She's telling us "straight up (Paula Abdul style)" that she doesn't support gay marriage. Joe threw the GLBT's under the bus on marriage. UGH. Can we move past this people?

6:41pm Sarah Palin has said troops for or five times. Why do people says "win" or "lose" about war? Don't we all lose in war? Obama/Biden will end this war! Sarah just said Dems are waving a white flag of surrender. That made Joe smile. Can't wait to hear what he says back. She gets really excited when she thinks she puts in a zinger.

6:46pm Time to talk about Iran and Pakistan. Joe's up first and talking about Pakistan. One thing I have in common with Sarah? I'm not so hot on foreign policy. Time for beer and tots. Joe is explaining it and I'm understanding. Let's see if Sarah can do the same.

6:48pm Sarah says the central of the war on terror is Iraq. Is it 2003? She keeps saying nucular. OMG...she invoked Kissinger...OMG. People around the world Hate America! Hate our Freedoms! Hate Womens Rights! Jesus take the Wheel, take it from her hands.

Biden is clearing the air. Let's talk with our adversaries to work it out. Hug it out. Fist jab it out. Viva Espana! Crowd roaring again.

6:55pm Awwww. Que cute! Sarah and Joe heart Israel. Sarah is now talking about answer on foreign policy, just talk about how change is coming. She's channeling Obama, you know why? Its Baraktober. Joe is calling her out for not answering questions, subtly.

6:57pm Sarah Palin is a name-dropper but doesn't make sense. And she wants to cover her notes, so she's bringing it to Afghanistan for reasons SE Portland he can't understand! Can we go back to the Castro brothers? I thought she was only "tolerant" of gays?

Cry me a river, sister girl. You are SUCH an outsider. Boo fucking hoo. I just don't get what you senators are talking about! She's talking about Darfur and Sudan. Not sure what Alaska has to do with it, but I'm going to buy her line.

Joe is equating McCain with Cheney. You know what they are? Chen Chen Chen, chen of fools...get it? I'm ON with the songs tonight!

7:07pm Sarah says McCain knows how to win a war. But hey, didn't we "lose" in Vietnam? Uh-Oh. Here comes the "heartbeat away" question. Joe says he'd do exactly what Barack would do if the worst happened. And he would REJECT the Bush Doctrine. He says this is the most important election ever since 1932. Now, Sarah's answer. They are a "team of mavericks!" They will have differences of opinion but she will get rid of the greed of Wall Street and bring the values of Wasilla. Sarah said Wasilla so I have to sip my beer. Excuse me...

Her folksy cliches are going to get her in trouble. She said, "shout out." She said, "My kids-is school." WTF. Her English is so bad. I don't want her to be bad, I don't. But she is. OMG, she said John McCain "tapped" her. HOT.

7:18pm Joe is again, schooling Sarah on what the VP does. Applause everywhere.

Sarah is talking about the heartland. She telling us why she was selected as VP and it's crazy. She's crazy, especially when she starts talking in that husky whisper. Sarah says her and McCain represent something perfect...perfect America!

7:20pm Joe is bringing the sad story. Bring it JOE. Joe just pulled the SEX CARD.

7:24pm Joe is holding it DOWN on the maverick issue. He says to McCain, "I say good day, Sir. I say GOOD DAY!"

7:25pm When have they changed their minds? Joe gives a judicial appointment answer. Sarah "quasi-changed" on vetoes. Her answer doesn't make sense. I can't really type about it because I can't follow her sentences.

Closing statements

"Also" is not a word you end a sentence with, Sarah. She skewered the MSM for ruining her reputation. I think she's accusing democrats of potentially taking away "freedoms" if we win. Harsh, sister.

Joe's closing is so clearly better than Sarah Palin's. You are watching it, you know what I'm saying.

Katie Couric made a comment about Sarah's syntax. What an elitist. The nerve of her, paying attention in high school English.

KOIN is going to do a talk back session with the crowd. Let's see how it goes. Jeff and I are dying for commentary, but they've turned the volume on the TV. My cousin Jamal says he spied an ear piece in Sarah's ear.

This audience says Biden won. We are in PDX, but I don't think that anyone is going to say Sarah won. This woman from Cornelius is smacking down Portlanders because the crowd yelled out during the speech. She's waving her finger and saying, "This is what I expected from Portlanders!"

The crowd is talking about the importance of NOT wanting to have a beer with their leaders. They want them to be professionals. The KOIN host mentioned the threats against Barack and the health of McCain.

Beer daddy and I are leaving the Bagdad to wonk out in front of our own televisions with the MSM of our choice. It's been fun. Thanks all and Happy Baracktober!

  • pat malach (unverified)

    "A woman just announced that there are no more seat savers"

    Are you sure that wasn't Randy Leonard?

  • Jeff Alworth (unverified)

    Okay, this "beer daddy" thing is a swipe at my age, isn't it?

    Yeah, you owe me.

  • Lelo (unverified)

    Is it sexist to evaluate what the candidates are wearing? Because if you know who wears that hot pink suit I'm going to yell out BARBIE!

    P.S. Pass the tater tots.

  • Roy McAvoy (unverified)

    GOPS cant be too happy so far

  • (Show?)

    Biden's doing great so far!

    Palin's fairly blunt and obvious refusal to answer certain questions and comments surely must be obvious to everyone watching with even a minimum of objectivity.

    Biden rocked on deregulation. He also made a very strong point about the need to replicate the windfall profits tax that Palin instituted in Alaska and how McCain is steadfastly against such an idea. Pure gold!!

  • (Show?)

    Drill baby drill, by Palin? Really...?

    Good grief.

  • Lelo (unverified)

    And I'm supposed to be grateful for her tolerance? Thanks, but no thanks Palin.

  • (Show?)

    The charge of too much fingerpointing backwards coming from the same woman who all night has been pointing fingers backwards????


  • (Show?)

    "Jesus take the wheel"

    Best line of the night. Everyday people won't care that she mispronounces nuclear and Iraq.

  • (Show?)

    Winner: Karol. You're killing me on comments.

  • (Show?)

    Good for Gwen following up on the quixotic Palin comments about the Constitution granting the Veep more power than has been exercised.

  • anon (unverified)

    You must be watching a different debate. The one I'm watching has Biden coming off as angry, defensive and failing miserably at reconciling the policy differences between him and Obama. But at least his 30 years of public speaking experience shows.

    Palin won this one, hands down.

  • (Show?)

    Anon thus predicts, boldly. Jeez, at least leave your name. Nothing wrong with voicing an honest opinion.

  • Roy McAvoy (unverified)

    "Biden came off as angry"

    Didn't get that at all from Biden. Her annoying traits aside, Palin did better as the debate continued. Lacked substance, but much more at ease than in the first 10 minutes. Enjoyed the live blogging Karol.

  • Ms Mel Harmon (unverified)

    Hey Anon, Tell me your name so I can come to your house and share the drugs you're on, okay? Thanks!

  • (Show?)

    The pundits seem to be mostly calling the debate a win/win for both candidates. Palin for doing better than in the Couric interview and Biden for the substance of what he said.

    I'm curious how undecided woman who are listening to the pundits will feel about Palin being held to such a lower standard in terms of "success" at this debate than Biden is behing held to. Doesn't that low bar imply that a woman couldn't have held her own on substance?

  • (Show?)

    My cousin Jamal says he spied an ear piece in Sarah's ear.

    Jeez, we're watching on a 30-foot screen. You'd think we'd have noticed that. It does seem like this is a rumor with legs...

  • dropJawd (unverified)

    I really wish my household was classified as Middle class by Palin's Definition. We would be set!

    As governor, Palin makes $125,000 “Palin’s household income of $225,000, adding in her husband’s earnings of $93,000 from commercial fishing business, and working part time for BP, and $10,500 from Iron Dog Snowmobile Race.”

    It's her American right to earn money, but she kept saying that she is middle class just like the rest of America and she knows what we are going through and feeling.

  • (Show?)

    Jeff! I thought I got you next week! No Fair!

    Last minute sub for Paul. I rock.

  • (Show?)

    I thought Gwen Ifill was pretty terrible. The "heartbeat away" question was the best example Rather than asking the "heart beat away" she asked "what policies would be different.

    How lame.

  • Bill R. (unverified)

    Independents give it to Biden on all topics and 69%-31% Overall.

    CNN poll says Biden 51-36, Palin still unqualified to be prez, say 51%

    CBS poll of independents has it Biden 46-31, 33 tie.

  • (Show?)

    Hey, that mediacurves poll is awesome. I love the way it's broken down by subject.

    Also, unless I'm missing something it appears that they polled entirely new groups for each question.

  • (Show?)

    as for the Bagdad competition, i'm afraid Karol is the clear winner. "especial" with Jeff using "especial" as a word! but mostly because Karol, you have a great feel for this gig. nice flow to your writing. "Cry me a river, sister girl. You are SUCH an outsider. Boo fucking hoo." pure poetry, of the live blogging sort. can i sit with you at the next debate and just listen to you talk back to McNasty?

  • (Show?)

    Thank you, TA, for the compliment. I had fun. I felt for the Oregon Catalyst bloggers. They were outmatched with the liberal crowd and I don't think they liked my under-the-breath comments...

  • johnnie (unverified)

    I wish it Patriotic to pay taxes.

    The top 5% of US Taxpayers (fyi 100 -Obama's 95 = 5) pays 59.5% of the IRS AGI Taxes! The bottom 50% pays 3.0%! (source: What percentage do Progressive's think the top 5% of US taxpayer should pay - 100%? Oh, the cutoff for the top 5% is NOT $250k. Take a tour at

    The economic illiteracy of this nation is incredible!

    Also, how is Obama going to give 95% of working people a tax break when 40% have a ZERO tax liability?

  • (Show?)

    I don't get the "tapped" comments. It's a perfectly good usage to say someone was tapped for a job or a task.

    A little funny in terms of Palin's anti-East Coast comments though (locus of several of swing states, & I've met a surprising number of Westerners who regard Ohio as East Coast, inverse of the famous New Yorker cartoon map on cosmopolitan provincialism) -- being "tapped" is how you get into a Yale secret society, as with both G. Bushes and Skull & Bones.

  • ellie (unverified)

    Karol, I really enjoyed your live-blogging - spot on!

  • (Show?)

    Chris -- When in doubt about lingo, visit

    Here's the definition of "tap"

  • (Show?)


    Don't feel too bad, Chris. I had to have that one explained to me a number of months ago, too.


  • (Show?)

    With that kind of talk, TA, you're not going to be my Mom's favorite blogger for long!

    But I agree that Karol's liveblog is great. Having recruited her (not tapped!) to be an editor, I feel especial pleasure in her posts.

    (Yes, my humor serves a niche market.)

  • (Show?)

    Thank you Ellie, I really had fun making fun of the debate festivities.

  • (Show?)

    Fun stuff; good job. I just pray we don't end up with another Pres or Veep who sounds like a L'il Abner character or the cowboy from Elderberries. Palin's "aw-shucks" act is painful in every way. (Jessica Simpson for President, anyone?) Give it a rest already! She clearly doesn't know anything other than acting.

    My ears can't take four more years of "nuculer," dagnabbit.

  • (Show?)

    Jeff Alworth is one of Oregon's finest and most talented live-bloggers. You betcha!


    actually, i think your biggest problem was the delay in getting beer. that'll throw anyone off their game. next time demand a gofer. or your own beer steward.

  • (Show?)
    <h2>Just showing my age, I guess. :-></h2>

connect with blueoregon