The Dem Debate: Part I

Campbell Brown says Obama's position today is different from a few years ago. Obama says it's not.

Obama: "The starting point for our policy in Cuba should be the liberty for the Cuban people." (Sounds the same as what HRC thinks.) But he says "it's important for the United States to talk to its friends...[as well as] its enemy."

Clinton: "would be ready to reach out and work with a new Cuban government so long as it demonstrated that it truly was ready to change that direction" (she means democracy.) "There has to be evidence" that "the changes are real." She "would not meet with" Raul Castro "until there was evidence that change was happening."

We're 15 minutes into a 90 minute debate and there's only been one question.

Obama: Ok, a segue into his campaign message: good ideas go to die in DC.

Obama: A much broader intro, but light on the whiffy-piffy stuff and heavy on the "I feel your pain" stuff. Mentions his "detailed proposals" for dealing with problems.

HRC: the campaign is about "you" -- and about your material concerns.

HRC's voice seems hoarse; Obama has a cold. Campaigning is hard.

Hillary Clinton opens with her ties to Texas; she lived there; she learned from Barbara Jordan and Ann Richards. Lots of crowd applause. Serves to remind Texans that HRC has some roots in the state.