"John of the Grimaces met Barack the Unflappable in Hempstead tonight, and the guy with the arctic cool, not surprisingly, prevailed.
Now we know why Obama’s aides were goading McCain earlier this week to raise the Bill Ayres issue in the debate. They wanted to play McCain’s rage against Obama’s measured, judicious, statesmanlike, even a bit boring presidentiality. And McCain obliged them big time.
The Arizona senator had been doing well up until that moment, which came about half an hour into the debate. But as he recounted the Obama attack ads (which may outnumber McCain’s in raw numbers, since Obama has more money than God, but which come nowhere close to the percentage of McCain commercials that are attack ads), McCain started seething, and after Obama answered his attack on the Ayres connection, McCain couldn’t stop. He kept on attacking, then remembered that people didn’t actually like this, pirouetted to say that his campaign was about issues, and fell flat on his face, not to rise again for the duration of the debate.
The Obama campaign has always believed that if McCain was going to be knocked out in the course of a debate, it would be at the hands of McCain. ... "http://voices.washingtonpost.com/postpartisan/2008/10/the_final_debate_angry_white_m.html?hpid=opinionsbox1