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Debate prep: My candidate is dumber than yours

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Although there are plenty of amusing moments during a presidential campaign, one of the most humorous – and eye-rolling – is when the campaigns start bashing their own candidates in order to lower expectations for an upcoming debate.

We're seeing it now.  Of course it started earlier this week.  Then it took a time-out because John McCain suspended his campaign which, incidentally, never felt suspended.  But then after announcing his confidence that a financial bailout package is likely, he unsuspended resumed his campaign, and both sides went back to flogging themselves.

Obama:  McCain is great

A recent email from the Obama camp reads, "According to the pundits, McCain's debating skills are unparalleled ... and the expectations for him tonight are sky-high."

"The centerpiece of John McCain's campaign has been his more than a quarter century of experience in Washington learning about and debating foreign policy," the email continues.  "If he slips up, makes a mistake or fails to deliver a game-changing performance, it will be a serious blow to his campaign."

Obama:  I'm really terrible

The Obama camp also included a reference to an AP story that helped them denigrate their own candidate.

"For a man known as a powerful speaker, Obama has rarely wowed people in political debates. He can come across as lifeless, aloof and windy."

McCain:  You're right

This led the McCain communications team to issue an email criticizing the expectations game.

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