A reader writes:
I watched this program from the perspective of a Christian. Obama gave thoughtful honest answers which, I think, reflected his faith and how it informs his life and politics. He came across to me as genuine. Clearly, McCain is uncomfortable talking about his faith; maybe that's because it's just who he is but it also may be that his faith is only superficially a part of his identity. McCain avoided being personal by stringing together jokes and anecdotes along with statements from his stump speeches and ads.
You and I saw this very differently. In my view Obama was the winner. He participated in a personal conversation and McCain in a town hall meeting.
While he is more animated than usual, he recites the tired talking points of his stump speech we all have heard a million times. Not conversational like Obama, he says nothing remotely original. His responses are set pieces he has seared in his memory from countless repetition.
I take the point, but the crowd lapped it up. This was a religious forum and the audience responded to affirmations of faith, anecdote and broad, somewhat asinine notions that our job on earth is to "defeat" evil. If that's how you see foreign policy, you're going to love the McCain presidency. So much evil. So little time.