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Just as we did last week during their first debate, we want to hear from you during and after tonight's debate between Charlie Crist and Jim Davis. Let us know if the candidates are answering the questions you want answered. Let us know what you think of their performance and whether they said anything that you agree with or disagree with. Joining the discussion will be Miami Herald reporter Gary Fineout, who like most other Floridians will be watching the debate on TV.


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An Iraq question first, why?

Gary Fineout

Hmmm--a question about Iraq.

Gary Fineout

Well, wait a minute, did Charlie Crist say that America has never been attacked on its own soil? Does Pearl Harbor count?

did i just imagine 9/11

Does it help or hurt to have Charlie Crist attacked by Max Linn for not being a ''traditional'' Republican?

Gary Fineout

Wow. This is turning into a free-for-all. Crist getting attacked by Linn for "not answering the question,'' while Charlie can't get an answer in.

Gary Fineout

So here's comes the first serious fact-check. When and where did Charlie Crist criticize Congress for its vote on Terri Schiavo?

Linn has totally embarassed Crist, something Davis wouldn't have done, tough stuff. Mathews becomes the second straight moderator to tell crist he's not answering a question or to be specific.

alright, crist blatantly lied about standing up during terri schiavo. LIED. he never said a damn thing

Mathews seems to be more interested in getting attention than helping people find out where the candidates are comeing from

Gary Fineout

Chris Matthews obviously has no understanding of what constitutes a paper trail. The idea is that the paper trail is left with the machine so that in the event of a recount you can confirm that the machine accurately recorded the vote.

haha nice one gary

I think he knows what a paper trail is but is more concerned with 'getting' the candidates - he's awful

I don't want any of these guys to be governor - dispiriting

Gary Fineout

Crist has once again overstated the impact of his Anti-Murder Act. Several newspapers have reported that Crist's bill would likely have not applied to several of the killers referenced tonight by Crist.

Charlie is proving tonight that he is infact an empty suit...

Unbelievable. Chris Matthews says Crist is just like DC Mayor Marian Berry when he says crime is down but forgets that murder is up.


Let me get this straight...this Crist guy is making murder illegal with this "Anti-murder Act"? Is he coming out against murder?


Gary Fineout

Well that might be the line of the night--one's got an empty chair and the other is an empty suit

Max should have been in last weeks. That would have been fun...

Justin V.

Crist comes out as the strongest debator - but I don't agree with all his positions.

Linn appears to have hurt himself more than help with his "emotional" outbursts.

Davis has avoided many questions.

Hurrah for Matthews making these candidates explain their "promises" and back up all their "slogans."

Still don't know who to vote for...

Gov. Bush: Crist’s proposal would “do more harm than good.” [Ft. Myers News-Press, 10/28/06]

Gov. Bush: Crist’s proposal “sounds good, but applied it won’t work.” [Ft. Myers News-Press, 10/28/06]

Lt. Gov. Toni Jennings: Crist’s plan would result in “no insurance,” leaving Florida homeowners without any protection from hurricanes. [Ft. Myers News-Press, 10/27/06]

Florida Murder Rate Up 27%; Violent Crime Up 3.2%. Local police agencies reported 518 killings in Florida through the end of June, up 27 percent from the 408 murders the state saw in the first six months of 2005. Violent crime in general is bucking the overall trend in Florida, increasing 3.2 percent in the first half of 2006 over the same period last year. [AP, 10/17/06]

Crist: We Help Gov. Bush On Terri Schiavo. Crist: “We helped him. Gov. Bush is a friend of mine, you need to understand that. And my friend asked our office, his general counsel's office asked our office for help with the pleadings and that, and we were helpful. But again, I feel that decisions of that nature are better left to God and family.” Florida Baptist Witness, 10/26/06;

Gary Fineout

Well I agree this was certainly a much more lively debate than the previous one or the ones before the primary for that matter. But the questions reflected the interests of someone from Washington D.C. I'm not sure how much additional information Florida voters got out of this spirited clash. What you think?


The information I got tonight is that Charlie Crist doesn't have many ideas or answers.

I can't bring myself to vote for a Democrat, though. I'd say Max Linn just earned my vote.

Justin  V

Yes much more lively...but it is true...someone is going to have to seriously address this crime issue and the state of primary and secondary education in Florida - not to mention infrastructure issues created by such intense growth.

I wonder how many voters didn't watch because of the unproductive candidate bashing that happened at the last debate?


Davis appears to be more credible than charlie Crist.

Steve McGonigle

This debate just reinforced why I am voting for Jim Davis. He clearly is the only logical choice. I feel he will do the most for the blue collar worker in this state. I don't want to be forced to move out of Florida!!!


Max Linn only looked like an angry baby and an ass, it was just disgusting. I wanted a real debate, not a crybaby yelling, "come on, look at me charlie."

And to think, I was actually worried that Linn would take voters away from Crist. He in fact most likely took voters away from watching the rest of the debate.

John Brown

One of the worst moderated debates I have seen in many years!

Keep the debate about Florida! - Property taxes, insurances rates,
education, environmetal issues like the Everglades, job creation!

Instead we get Terri Schiavo, Gay marriage and adoption, Iraq, are you liberal or conservative or socialist/commnunist?! This debate was a circus! Jim Davis not specific enough or convincing enough, Charlie Crist composed and thoughtful, Linn was a wacko!

Give us a Dick Cheney/Joe Lieberman 2000 policy wonk debate please!!


I agree with the message above. This debate was a circus. My take home message was Davis admits being a liberal who will raise your taxes. Crist came across fairly well. Linn was just crazy.


I guess it was disgusting for a Crist fan.

I was disgusted by how uninformed Crist is. I don't think he knows what a paper trail is. He obviously refuses to answer any real questions.

You just can't get by on name dropping Reagan and a nice smile.


It's no question that Davis won. He provided the most detail and wasn't exposed to waffling, like Crist was.

rolando velasco

charlie rubber stamp for the republicans we need change not more of the same


This is amazing. A new low for the Republican Party. Crist has no idea what is going on. This should embarrass all but the most faithful Republicans.

I thought Davis won this one, hands down. Crist seemed on guard the entire evening. Perhaps Max Linn's presence made a difference???


Davis was very feisty tonight. He was a mellow, reassuring presence in the last debate. Guess we would get two for the price of one with him. Definitely won the debate. Linn's presence seemed to put Crist off stride and made his answers appear stilted and evasive. Matthews was a hoot, providing a different but still revealing debate. Enjoyed it!

I think the questions about national issues are relevant and important to Florida voters. Why shouldn't we know that Crist supports the war in Iraq? Ot that he would give George W a grade of "B". That speaks volumes about who Crist is and how he would lead. It also tells us to run like hell from Charlie!


Did you Davis supporters happen to notice the many times Chris Matthews kept grilling Davis, about the paper trail, about tax increases, about him being a liberal... Maybe you missed that.

It was a messy debate all around, but Davis in no way came out as a clear winner, not even a slight winner. Linn just made the debate excrutiating to watch.

Atleast Davis attempted to answer questions unlike Charlie.


This debate was not well moderated. The discussion of the paper trail dragged forever for no apparent reason. Linn made some interesting points and was rather lively. Crist and Davis essentially repeated the same arguments of the first debate. Hum....


The point is that Crist was on the defensive the entire time. He realized that the empty chair thing was lame, so he was left with nothing to run on. Davis got slightly more combative and provided the most substance. Linn acted as Davis's hatchet-man, and I think he made Crist's conservative base somewhat softer.


Crazy came calling tonight - Max Linn was out of control. Crist looked uncomfortable and Chris Mathews didn't ask enough questions about Florida.

Voting by touchscreen has already been a problem with this election. Check it: http://sticksoffire.com/2006/10/30/are-we-ready-this-time/

Jim Davis did a great job - coming on strong with facts and figures that add up. He owns a home, has children in public school and understands the lives of his constituents.


I thought that Chris misunderstood what was meant by the need for a paper trail.

I felt that Linn was largely a distraction.

Charlie and Davis probably both appealed to their staunch supporters, but if anything, the debate suggested to me that both of the major candidates are about equal on the big debate stage. From personal knowledge of both men, I would have expected Crist to look much better than Davis in such a format.


I think it was clear that Crist won tonight, Davis tried to use his wife and kids as a plus to vote for him ( three times, why>??), Max, feel sorry for him, they could not even get him a podium like the other ones,it is going to be a close race but still think Crist will win ( i am not a republican or democrat ).


Does someone need to explain to Charlie that Murder is a crime? it seems that his idea of crime rate going down is a moot point considering (like Jim said) the murder rate has trippled in the last 6 months...


As a Florida newcomer with little knowledge of state politics, I came away very impressed with Jim Davis. He seemed knowledgeable as well as combative when necessary. Very quick on his feet. Crist's answers seemed overly rehearsed and unnatural. I also think that the third party candidate hurt Crist and may have taken away some of his votes. I liked Davis' plan to control Florida's growth and changes in the FCAT. So far, he appears to have my vote.


Christ was stumbling over the Bushes.


Pardon me! The spelling is Crist.

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