All times Central.
8:07 Brokaw asks McCain who he'd nominate for Treasury Secretary. McCain quips "not you, Tom. Sorry." Probably the last life of the night. And not a big laugh.
8:10 McCain is going after Obama.
8:14 Obama says "I've got to correct some of McCain's history. Not surprisingly." McCain starts force-laughing. Man, they're gonna be gunning at each other tonight.
8:14 Obama wants to make Warren Buffet Treasury Secretary and thanks him for his support. Shedding that celebrity label, eh Barack?
8:15 Obama stops pointing fingers for a moment to say "you don't want to see politicians pointing fingers."
8:17 New Drinking Game: Drink every time McCain says "croneyism."
8:20 New Drinking Game: Drink every time Obama puts Bush and McCain in the same sentence.
8:21 McCain almost said "maverick" but didn't quite.
8:22 "Pork-barrel!" Everybody drink.
8:25 McCain said "clean coal technology" and Obama visibly flinched. I think he wanted to hit him on it, but he doesn't get to because of the rules.
8:26 Drink every time Brokaw reminds the candidates about the rules.
8:27 Obama sent out an aide to check the gas prices in the area. Smart.
8:27 Brokaw motioned Obama to wrap up and he smacked him down. "Just one point I want to make, Tom." Ooooooh.
8:27 Brokaw reminds everyone about the rules! Everyone drinks!
8:28 There's a question about sacrifice and the American Dream. Obama's gotta be breathing a sigh of relief that McCain is going first. You never want to go before the Vietnam vet.
8:29 McCain spends no time on sacrifice and the American Dream and instead talks about earmarks for two minutes. The message being "no sacrifice needed! I've got this under control. Elect me!"
8:30 Obama invokes 9-11. This is either a kill punch or a huge mistake.
8:31 It's neither. Obama reminds everyone how terribly Bush did during the 9-11 crisis. Weirdly, that's not how I remember it.
8:32 Obama's now talking about energy incentives. Do you get the sense that both candidates have only two or three issues they're going after tonight?
8:33 Woah, rules comment! Everybody drink!
8:33 Brokaw asks a question with Bush in the question. Little bit of a softball there.
8:34 Obama defended earmarks. He probably shouldn't have mentioned that earmarks are 18% of the federal budget. That is not helping.
8:35 McCain just invoked both Herbert Hoover and Protectionism. No one there has any idea what he's talking about.
8:37 I like Obama's little head twitch whenever he can't respond. It's killing him not to say anything.
8:37 Woah! Take eight drinks! What happened there? Obama tried to respond even though it wasn't his turn, so Brokaw slapped him down, but Obama kept going anyway, so Brokaw started reading a new question anyway. I think Brokaw's getting pissed at Obama's cavalier attitude toward the debate rules.
8:39 Obama has now completely ignored the question and started talking about tax exemptions anyway. Maybe Brokaw will call him on it.
8:40 Obama hits McCain back for his "overhead projector" crack. Saw that coming.
8:40 McCain wants to answer the question and to respond to Obama at the same time. He's so excited he's not sure where to start.
8:41 McCain's getting Mavericky up there.
8:41 Oooh, base closings. Hitting the tough issues.
8:42 No one broke the rules and Brokaw made a rules comment anyway. Take two drinks!
8:43 McCain makes Lieberman reference. Take a drink.
8:43 Am I the only one that thinks that McCain makes it sound like he and Lieberman are perhaps some sort of superhero duo traveling the world proposing alternate energy solutions?
8:45 Obama struggles when he goes first but kills when he goes second.
8:46 Technical director miscuts again. Welcome to prime time, rook.
8:47 Both candidates have this look when the other one is going that says "man, look at this hack dithering away with all this nonsense."
8:47 Huge rules smackdown! Obama takes a potshot. McCain does all but wink at Brokaw. I think he's enjoying that he and Brokaw look like a matched set up there with Obama looking like the odd man out.
8:49 McCain getting cute, he just referred to Obama as "that one." You know that's going to be quoted out of context constantly on MSNBC this week.
8:51 Obama talks health care and only talks about women's issues. Smart.
8:53 I really feel that McCain is winning so far tonight, but I might be too biased to tell. He's certainly extremely well-prepped tonight, and he's throwing heat. But with Obama having a strong lead in economic issues, to undecideds he might look a little desperate more than passionate.
8:55 McCain just booted the health care question. Not good.
8:56 Obama going second on health care is gonna be rough for McCain. He's gonna eat this one up.
8:56 Obama invoked his dead mother. Ooh.
8:57 Obama hints that he thinks it might be possible that John McCain hates children. He's really gunning for him.
8:58 Woah, Obama just took a shot at the great state of Arizona. Don't bring that business up in here, sir.
8:58 New Drinking Game: take two drinks every time Brokaw makes a rules comment and then McCain makes a joke about it.
9:00 "We don't have time for on the job training." Then he turns around and stalks back to the chair. Woah.
9:02 Obama calls McCain a "cheerleader for Bush." That's two drinks.
9:03 Obama says we can't help Darfur until we change John McCain and George Bush's foreign policy. That seems mean of us.
9:05 Darfur reference #2. And wait, the problem is that McCain can't rally international support, but Obama can. Well, he can when he's President. That's when he will receive that magical power.
9:06 McCain wants a cool hand at the tiller. I feel that if you're in charge of steering the boat, you should be allowed gloves.
9:08 McCain just referenced "his hero," Reagan, while also pointing out that he knew more than him about the military. Gutsy.
9:09 Obama might be right. All our problems might really be that we never finished hunting for bin Laden.
9:11 McCain just flip-flopped and said that Teddy Roosevelt is his hero. Reagan or Roosevelt, McCain! Pick a side.
9:12 McCain and Obama can't even agree on how to pronounce "Taliban." Obama pronounces it "TAL-lee-ban" and McCain calls it "TAHL-eh-BAHN."
9:13 Obama just smacked down Brokaw again, and kept going, so much so that Brokaw said "well, I'm just a hired hand here." Someone is not going to be invited to Brokaw's famous Halloween party and bob-for-apples marathon.
9:14 Obama says that McCain calls him "green behind the ears." It does sound like McCain.
9:15 McCain said that he could totally catch bin Laden if he wanted to. He's probably just feeling a little sluggish today, that's all that stopping him.
9:17 Drink every time McCain references General Petraus. That's at least four drinks so far.
9:18 The candidates sound mad at each other. Like, a fight might break out. Quick poll: who's the most likely to hurl their microphone at the other in anger? I think it's tied.
9:19 McCain just said that we're not going to have another Cold War with Russia. Yeah, but that's probably what the last guy said.
9:20 McCain wants to show Georgia "moral support." Just what they're looking for.
9:21 Obama also feels that Georgia could use some moral support. We need to do something about that poor nation's self-esteem.
9:24 Brokaw just asked a "yes or no" question. Nice try.
9:24 McCain said that if he answered "yes" to the question, he would start another Cold War with Russia. The stakes for this debate are high, huh? Also, five minutes ago there was no chance of a cold war, so, this seems like an empty threat.
9:25 McCain just patted an Navy officer in the audience on the shoulder in a decidedly grandfatherly manner. Good work in the Middle East, sonny. Swing by for pinochle sometime.
9:27 Obama went over to the Navy officer to shake his hand, but I think he didn't want to look unoriginal, so he's just standing too close to him, instead.
9:29 Foreign policy is not treating Obama well. He's got his one point ("I hate Iraq. And Bush."), and the rest is a lot of tap dancing. I think he's happy the debate is finally leaving this subject.
9:30 Obama referenced his wife, his grandmother, and his single mother, then swung back and referenced them again. Finish off whatever alcohol you have left.
9:32 The question is "what don't you know?" and both McCain and Obama's answer is "pretty much nothing."
9:34 Oh, a steady hand at the tiller. The guy must've gotten gloves.
9:36 How much does this shaking hands with the audience at the end of the show montage look like the end of SNL each week?
9:40 The "that one" comment is going to be the the story of out this debate. It's gonna be at least three or four news cycles. Guarantee it.