A couple more GOP debate observations that didn’t quite fit my narrative:

Giuliani and McCain seemed either unusually subdued (Giuliani) or a little lost (McCain). I couldn’t tell if that’s because they both realize they’re going nowhere in Iowa, or because they were blind-sided by the arbitrary exclusion of immigration and Iraq from the proceedings—issues Rudy and McCain like to talk about, respectively. Whatever the case, they felt like nonentities.

Fred Thompson, like Frank said, seemed to find his mojo from time to time. Way too little, way too late. But I now see a glimmer of what other people saw in the guy.

Finally, is it just me, or do we no longer get Alan Keyes when he shows up at his events, but some guy doing Alan Keyes impressions? I’m not entirely sure when he lapsed into knowing self-parody, but he’s clearly there. So many winks and nods I felt like I was watching a Rocky Horror-esque musical revue.

--Noam Scheiber