Just saw Senator Evan Bayh (D-IN) on Bob Schieffer's Face the Nation, going up against MN Governor Tim Pawlenty. [Is it just me, or do Pawlenty and Bayh look like long-lost twins?]
Bayh was quite good - on-message, repeatedly citing Senator Obama's superior judgment on Iraq, Afghanistan, the budget deficit and even Georgia (the one in Europe). Pawlenty kept recycling The Surge, but Bayh kept going "if we had listened to Obama, we wouldn't be in Iraq in the first place!" And kept calm all through out... Promote his man and attack the other, but with a smile. He reinforced his claim on the Democratic VP slot.
[Pawlenty was decent as well, bringing up McCain's performance during yesterday's Rick Warren forum in comparison to Obama, reaching much the same conclusion as First Read - McCain is direct and knows his values, while Obama appears halting, unsure, etc. - though First Read also called Obama's performance thoughtful and inclusive.]
Then, managed to catch the end of Senator Dick Lugar's (R-IN) appearance on Wolf Blitzer. Lugar - who has collaborated with Obama on nuclear non-proliferation issues - said there were no loose nukes in Georgia, but did say - unprompted - that the US has a long history of engagement on nuclear disarmament with Russia, which is still on-going. So while the Russian incursion into Georgia cannot be excused, the US cannot forget it has its own agenda with Russia:
"These are facts of life in which the United States' relationship with Russia, thank goodness, for 16 years, has worked steadily toward nonproliferation and toward reduction of threats to the U.S. Not to Georgia, but to the U.S. now.
We have got to keep our eye on the ball. This doesn't excuse brutal actions by the Russians. They took advantage of a situation in which we were far away. But at the same time, we need an agenda with Russia, even as we are discussing the agenda with Georgia."
Back to Schieffer - he ended Face the Nation saying the Presidential candidates should not meddle directly with foreign conflicts, forgetting that there is only one POTUS at a time... I wonder if that's a dig at McCain sending his own envoys to Georgia.