The first night of the Democratic Debate was unimpressive. Most of the candidates were trying to out-liberal the others. It was all so, shall we say, unimpressive.

The moderators clearly favored Elizabeth Warren, repeatedly going back to her for questions, particularly at the beginning.

You had Warren’s tough gal act, Beto’s wandering mind and Spanish language lesson plan, Bill de Blasio’s almost full-blown commie schtick, Spartacus, and Amy Klobuchar’s Minnesota nice routine.

Who won?

Let’s focus on the purpose of an early debate — for all but the top few candidates, it’s name recognition and not coming across as a marginal freak. Tulsi Gabbard achieved a little of that, but far and away the voice of sanity was someone I never had heard of.

He spoke about how Medicare for all, which depends on reimbursement rates so low it would bankrupt most hospitals, was not viable. That goes against the grain of the Democratic Party, where most of the leading candidates have jumped on some version of Bernie’s plan.

When I heard this person speak, my first reaction was, who is this guy.

Turns out it’s John Delaney, a former Congressman from Maryland.

Being the “not completely crazy” Democrat could get Delaney media attention.

If so, Dan Bongino says watch out.

What was interesting is that after Delaney had some good moments, the moderators pretty much ignored him.

Elizabeth Warren was the biggest loser. She already has name recognition, so her task was to establish herself as the only real contender on stage. And she didn’t do that. Warren came across as just another politician on stage.

She stuck to her tired stump speech on how the system is only working for the rich and powerful, but that was in response to a question pointing out that a large majority of Americans feel the economy is good.

Warren was asked if she had a plan to deal with Mitch McConnell. She babbled on about keeping up the fight, but the bottom line was she doesn’t have a plan. She appeared weak.

Warren’s unimpressive performance should not be a surprise to anyone familiar with her 2012 debate performances against Scott Brown. She didn’t do well at all, despite her much-ballyhooed high school debating history. She’s wooden on stage because she sticks too heavily to a script. Warren emerged as just another politician on stage.

John Delaney emerged from the complete wilderness to someone about whom people are asking, ‘who is this guy?’ For someone with almost zero name recognition, mission accomplished.

 
 
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