Did Kerry Have Debate Cheat Sheet?
DEBATE MYSTERY: DID KERRY HAVE CHEAT SHEET? (Drudge Report)
Section 5, pages 4-5 of the binding “Memorandum of Understanding” that was negotiated and agreed upon by both political campaigns states: “No props, notes, charts, diagrams, or other writings or other tangible things may be brought into the debate by either candidate…. Each candidate must submit to the staff of the Commission prior to the debate all such paper and any pens or pencils with which a candidate may wish to take notes during the debate, and the staff or commission will place such paper, pens and pencils on the podium…”
So what did Dem presidential contender John Kerry take out of his jacket as he approached the stage [with his back to the auditorium’s audience]? What did Kerry place on the podium? Video replays of the Kerry maneuver played all weekend long on the internet.
[A tight zoom of the Boston.Com feed shows Kerry pulling a mysterious “card” from his jacket. 14 seconds into video, after commerical]
A top Kerry campaign source explained to the DRUDGE REPORT late Sunday how Bush supporters were once again trying to distract. “Kerry did not cheat,” said the Kerry insider. “This is more lies from Republicans, who are hoping for a quick change of subject away from the president’s performance, and the new polls.”
I really can’t see much from either feed. My strong suspicion, however, is that it was just the note paper that Kerry was scribbling on throughout the debate. Indeed, I’m not sure what advantage Kerry would have gained from crib notes.
Update (10/4 1109): While Drudge, as usual, simply posted this as if it were his original reporting (and directly linked to the video feed as well), this story actually started as a blog post by Bill at INDC Journal. His original post has lots of updates that go beyond the original Drudge hyperbole and his follow-up post this morning provides rebuttal to the hate mail and hyperventilating sparked by the original. As I discovered from reading the comments and following the TrackBacks from my brief post on the subject, many people don’t bother actually reading what’s written before engaging in commentary on it.