I didn’t see any major flubs or triumphs. Once Whitman remembered to use her mic, she seemed at ease, as did Poizner. Each laid out the platform – tax cuts, spending cuts, downsizing, whatever business wants – and tried to get to the other’s right. See here for more details.
So, in the absence of any KOs, let there be spin!
From Poizner communications director Jarrod Agen:
“Steve Poizner demonstrated tonight why he will win on Election Day – because he is the only candidate offering conservative reform. Steve is the only candidate who supports cutting taxes across the board, the only one willing to address illegal immigration, and the only candidate with a clear plan to revitalize our economy. Steve Poizner’s 10-10-10 economic growth plan will revitalize California’s economy and bring jobs back to our state by cutting taxes across the board by 10% and cutting the capital gains tax by 50%.”
From Whitman communications director Tucker Bounds:
“This was an enormous victory for our campaign tonight. Meg wanted to highlight her policy proposals and depth on the issues. We had hoped for a policy debate, and that’s exactly what happened. Tonight she showed exactly why her policy agenda is continuing to connect with California’s voters. In addition to articulating her vision for California, Meg did an excellent job of holding Steve Poizner to account for his previous positions. This debate underscored exactly why Meg is the strongest candidate to face Jerry Brown and the Democrats in the fall.”
And from California Republican Party Chairman Ron Nehring:
“The first gubernatorial debate of 2010 in California just concluded and the clear loser was…Jerry Brown. Both Republican candidates made it clear that this state has serious problems that will take serious people like Steve Poizner and Meg Whitman to solve them, not a career politician with a 40-year track record of failed policies and broken promises.
“I’m especially pleased that the first Republican debate provided an intelligent discussion filled with thoughtful solutions. It’s too bad the Democrats’ only hope for a debate during the primary campaign will be Jerry Brown arguing with himself again.”