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7:05 - If you're tracking American Flag lapel pins, it's 3 with, 5 without. Clinton, Obama, and Gravel and Richardson & Dodd are "flagless."
7:10 - Hillary Clinton has answered (for the 400th time, but the first time tonight) the question about her vote for the war. We'll see how many more times it comes up.
7:15 - Kucinich's bill -- HR 1234 - you think he named it so he could finish with the rallying cry "1234, we don't want no stinkin' war"?
7:22 - Sen. Edwards just tried to talk his way out of the $400 haircut with an old anecdote. Gonna take more than that.
7:23 - Note to Sen. Clinton: You just won re-election to the senate by a landslide in a very blue state that voted for John Kerry in the last election. That shoutout to your constituency was wasted airtime.
7:25 - Lot's of "ooh's" in this control room when Richardson took the "blow-dried candidates" shot at Edwards there, though it seemed like piling on after Edwards had already (sorta) addressed the issue.
7:26 - Dennis Kucinich in response to question about being anti-war before anti-war was cool, claiming that 650,000 Iraqi civilians have died in Iraq - what sounds to be a much higher number than anyone has claimed thus far.
7:28 - Biden gets the first big laugh with a one word answer - can he reassure us he won't be a human "gaffe" machine and restrict his "verbosity" if elected? "yes."
7:30 - Second big laugh comes from Senator Gravel -- "well how the hell did any of these
7:31 - Never thought the day would come when Senator Clinton would trumpet her time trying to create a universal health care system in this country. Then again, what if, on the night of the first Democratic presidential debate of 2004, we'd told you that Al Gore would win an Oscar for his movie about global warming?
7:40 - That whole "Your model Supreme Court Justice" thing didn't work out the way brian had planned. Probably meant someone the candidate would nominate, not their "fave"
7:42 - We missed it - did that 'show of hands' of candidates who've had guns in the house match up perfectly with the American Flag lapel pin count? people get here?!" A lot of people are going to know Mike Gravel's name tomorrow. (Question: how did this guy ever get elected in ALASKA?) He then went on a rant about pre-emptive war with nuclear weapons and we all got a little uncomfortable.
7:50 - We're into the viewer questions now -- countdown to "have you smoked pot?" and "boxers or briefs?"
7:53 - That Gravel is the wackiest potted plant we've ever seen.
7:59 - Those leaving on TV at 8 are probably pretty disappointed in what they got for the first hour. Not much real debate thus far, a whole lot of agreement, and not nearly enough criticism of the administration for the target audience here.
8:01 - Then again, we did learn that Dennis Kucinich lives in a house he bought for $22,500
8:04 - Gravel again on our "important enemies: "We have no important enemies, what we need to do is begin to deal with the rest of the world as equals."
8:07 -- Brian tee's up Rudy Giuliani for his fear-mongering that the Republicans will protect America better than ther Democrats... Clinton: "this administration has tried to hype the fear." Dodd: "It's a myth."
8:10 -- Four of eight on the latest 'show of hands' "Is there a Global War on Terror?" That was a test of courage, Kucinich definitely had it.
8:15 - Hillary addresses the war vote for the 2nd time
8:16 - Not a single candidate in the latest 'show of hands' : Do you support Dennis Kucinich's measure to impeach Vice President Dick Cheney. That probably won't go over too well with the base.
8:18 - We're learning more about Kucinich. Lives in a modest house, carries a "pocket constitution". If he says he rides a bicycle to work then it's official... he's "Dave."
8:22 - Mike Gravel says "Terrorism has been with us since the beginning and it will be with us to the end. We're going to be as effective fighting 'terrorism' as we have been fighting drugs."
8:24 - Kucinich takes on Obama, the closest thing to fireworks all night. He's making Obama look like a war-hawk over Iran. Gravel joins in the smackdown.
8:26 - Can't help thinking Gravel stood out tonight in a way that Joe Biden should have.
8:30 - So that's that. It's what you get with eight politicians and 90 minutes, too many people and not enough time.
sigh... stay tuned for the 'spin room' interviews, maybe we'll get some action there.
8: 37 - Joe Biden coming up in a minute
8:40 - Governor Richardson coming up after Biden
8:45 - Chris Dodd coming up next
8:48 - Hillary Clinton is actually out on a stage speaking to supporters already - after Dodd we'll jump into that
8:51 - Speaking of Hillary, for what it's worth, there were a lot of spouses on that stage after the debate - hers was not.
9:00 - Here come Mike Gravel
9:04 - If this guy challenges Chris to a duel, this will really have come full circle.
(and yes, we're keeping track of the "HA's")
9:11 - Obama's on the same stage Hillary was a while ago, they must have cleared out the Clinton crowd and brought in Obama's. That lattice-work sure is spiffy.
9:12 - Dennis Kucinich with Joe Scarborough after this.
9:15 - Wondering what that long awkard pause was all about? Keith's mic died in the middle of Tucker's report - if we had gone to his camera you would have seen him being manhandled by a tech person. Oh well, nice job Tucker.
9:20 -- It was not long ago (early '04 we think) that there was a "find a bride for Dennis Kucinich" thing his campaign was running. We hooked him up live on Countdown, but apparently it didn't work out. In the meantime, he appears to have done just fine on his own.
9:31 -- ok, the blog team had to run out and smoke - did we miss anything?
9:32 -- Yikes!! We got back in time to hear Chris say "dickin' around", so I guess we couldn't have missed anything better than that.
9:35 - A live booking war going on between Chris, Keith & Joe for Obama! It's all in good fun (or is it?)
ok, enough already. Talk amongst yourselves...