big laughs in answers to the final question

Schieffer says that all three of them have something in common: they’re all surrounded by powerful women. He asks “What have you learned from them?”

Bush is at his loosest and most appealling when he discusses his wife and daughters. The best thing we can do is “listen to them,” he says. Big laugh from the audience on tv and here. “I’ve learned to stand up straight and not to scowl.” Well, I suppose 1 out of 2 is not bad.

Kerry says that all three of them “married up.” Modest laugh. “Me more than others.” Big laugh.

Telling difference: Kerry smiles and laughs at Bush’s jokes. Bush keeps the same sour smirk on his face while Kerry jokes.

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4 thoughts on “big laughs in answers to the final question

  1. Unfortunately, the joke was obviously a calculated response to the eyebrow raising question people have made about Kerry: marrying wealth once is lucky, twice is gold digging. Self-deprication can be funny once in a while, but since he made the joke twice, it loses its charm. Besides, the question was about how much they learned from their strong wives and daughters. Kerry’s only response to that was “I married me a rich one!… now about my mom.” Ha ha… ha? Not really.

  2. Surely no one is naive enough to miss the fact that everything said in a presidential debate is calculated. As for Kerry being a “gold digger,” I’ll side with Kieran Healy, who finds this accusation as puzzling as I do, and characterizes it like this: “marrying into money is unseemly, being born into it is evidence of oneŪs good judgment.”

    Can we say that “Kerry’s only response to that was…”? Actually, no. Here’s the full quote after his joke, taken from the transcripts:

    Can I say, if I could just say a word about a woman that you didn’t ask about, but my mom passed away a couple years ago, just before I was deciding to run.›And she was in the hospital, and I went in to talk to her and tell her what I was thinking of doing.›

    And she looked at me from her hospital bed and she just looked at me and she said, “Remember:›integrity, integrity, integrity.”›Those are the three words that she left me with.›

    And my daughters and my wife are people who just are filled with that sense of what’s right, what’s wrong.›

    They also kick me around.›They keep me honest.›They don’t let me get away with anything.›I can sometimes take myself too seriously. They surely don’t let me do that.›

    And I’m blessed, as I think the president is blessed, as I said last time.›I’ve watched him with the first lady, who I admire a great deal, and his daughters.›He’s a great father.›And I think we’re both very lucky.

    I’m surprised the Republicans haven’t brought up this particular “cheap and tawdry political trick.” Praising the President for his relationship with his daughters? Kerry has some nerve!

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