CNN/YouTube Debate Live Blog! Part 2

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Obama has a zinger. Asked about whether or not he has authenticity as a black man, he says he proves his credentials when he tries to catch a cab in Manhattan.

Hillary has a good one on whether or not her femininity is in question: “I can’t run as anything but a woman.” Now Edwards is taking on the question of women — more women than men have trouble getting the health care they need, more women are affected by the minimum wage, and so on. He commends Senator Clinton for her lifetime of work on behalf of women, but claims he is the best advocate for them.

A couple totally awesome questions on gay rights. A lesbian couple asking if the candidates would allow them to marry if they were elected, and then a Baptist pastor who said, if religion was used to justify slavery, banning interracial marriage, and other injustices, and we recognized that was wrong, how can we use religion to deny gay Americans the right to vote. This is the sort of stuff conventional moderators would not have brought up. At least one cheer for YouTube, and Politics 2.0!

Moving on… Bill Richardson has had very little airtime tonight, so he’s trying to cram everything into his 30 or 60 seconds. A bit sad.

A question on Darfur illustrates a common phenomenon in big debates. Someone takes a strong position — like Joe Biden just did by calling, I believe, for American troops on the ground in Darfur — and then everyone else follows with other strong or kinda strong positions, and soon everyone’s stance starts to sound the same. I love fringe candidates as much as anyone, but fewer folks here tonight wouldn’t hurt.

More live blog: Part 1, Part 3, and Part 4.

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This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

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