Was Obama Playing Not to Lose?

I grimace at sports analogies. But didn’t it seem like Barack Obama was playing “not to lose” last night? I was going to write about it this morning, but David Von Drehle at TIME beat me to it:

There’s no shot clock in presidential politics. Instead, it’s like old-school basketball — if one side opens up a lead late in the game, they stall. Hang on to the ball. Don’t take chances. Force the other side to take all the risks.
Barack Obama ran that classic, careful late-game offense Tuesday night in the second of three presidential debates this fall. Ahead in the polls, he was safe, cautious, disciplined and boring — and nothing John McCain attempted was enough to lure him into recklessness. By the end of the evening at Belmont University in Nashville, McCain was 90 minutes closer to running out of time.
Here’s the whole article. And a link to McCain’s “that one” flub. I don’t think that remark is going to change the game. But maybe it was a sign that McCain is beginning to wear down in the fourth quarter.

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