Tommy Thompson has managed to mark himself out as a huge douchebag just in the intros. Sam Brownback needs to learn what kind of ties one can wear on television.

7:04 Mike Huckabee uses his intro to be non-douchey.

7:06 Someone needs to tell Mitt Romney what "null set" means. Also someone needs to tell him that inspectors were in Iraq.

(he did the null set thing twice!)

7:09 Rudy Giuliani rightly says Iraq needs to be viewed in a broader context, and then goes on to place it in the broader context that he's out of his freaking mind and believes Saddam Hussein, the government of Iran, and al-Qaeda are all in league against the United States.

NOTE Tom Ricks reports in Fiasco that only a half a dozen members of congress actually read the classified NIE. Dick Durbin and Bob Graham have both indicated that the classified NIE was at odds with the administration's public claims.

7:13 For a straight-talker, John McCain sure is desperately eager to avoid the question of what to do "if" (i.e., when) the surge doesn't "work."

7:16 I have no idea what point Mike Huckabee is trying to make about the Taliban's belief that they, rather than Ronald Reagan, won the Cold War but it's an interesting observation and -- unusual for a participant in this debate -- it's even true.

7:20 Someone needs to tell Rudy Giuliani that the Cold War was over during the 1990s.

7:25 I can't believe Rudy is trying to get away with evading the fact that as mayor of New York City he actually sued to defend his right to not enforce immigration laws.

7:29 McCain is fairly persuasive on immigration.

7:32 I like Duncan Hunter's conspiratorial account of the Bush administration's fence-related activities. But if he thinks Bush is so devious, then shouldn't this have broader implications for his view of the incumbent.

7:40 These Fred Thompson answers are super-annoying.

Also -- what does it mean that so far Wolf Blitzer has the line of the night (about lightning striking Giuliani). Also -- since when is religion important to Giuliani? Does he go to church? Was his third marriage in a church?

7:44 Obviously, I'm not a Young Earth Creationist the way Huckabee is, but he had a great answer to the annoying evolution question. Brownback's answer is good, too! We need more creationists in politics.

7:50 "Energy independence" is a wrongheaded notion (imported Canadian hydropower?) when Democrats espouse it, and it doesn't get less wrongheaded when Giuliani talks about it.

8:00 Mitt Romney's flip-flop on gays in the military is really egregious. Meanwhile, the idea that you can't change these kind of things in the middle of a war seems odd. Wasn't racial integration done during the Korean War? Is Charlie Rangel around somewhere to talk about this?

8:04 Tancredo attacks Bush! You'd think this guy could pull like 6-7 percent in the polls.


I say -- liveblogging sucks, and I'm not going to do it anymore.