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The first presidential debate

Attention, political junkies and watchers of tomorrow night’s presidential debate:

If you want to see something most journalists covering the debate won’t be watching, pay attention to the last 10-15 minutes of the debate.

Because the reporters covering it generally won’t be watching those final minutes.

There’s no set time for this to start, but as the debate is winding down, political bigwigs will start filing into “Spin Alley.” That’s a special, kind of narrow section wherever the press is stationed and where, shortly before the debate actually ends, campaign surrogates and big names will assemble and basically wait for the braying dogs of the press to descend upon them.

The reporters will be scrambling to get into position to ask the “Spin Alley” crowd what they think of the debate – which probably will still be unfolding, oddly enough.

I did it myself in Oxford in 2008. I was near Obama campaign strategist David Plouffe, who waved everyone back so he could “give Axe some room,” referring to David Axelrod, another Obama hand.

Obama and John McCain could have pledged allegiance to wherever Borat is from, and most people in the press area wouldn’t have caught it – immediately, of course.

Dansette

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