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Meanwhile, on Hardblogger...

From our Hardblogging colleagues
Bob Shrum and Hilary Rosen both think Hillary Clinton started out strong. Rosen says "Senators Clinton and Biden gave good focused starting answers. Clinton gave the best and firm overview of the politics. Biden gave a great brief overview of the tactical military and political questions we face." Rosen also hopes that tonight's debate is a testament to Jack Valenti's kind of politics. Valenti, who passed away today, was her friend and mentor. "He loved politics. The civil kind," she writes.

Shrum says "It was crisp, almost without a whiff of nuance. Edwards definitely managed to draw the contrast with Clinton on the war without seeming to attack her. And Shrum tells the "second-tier" candidates what they have to do: "make a good impression that outlasts the night, get noticed, inch up, and begin raising some more money."   
 
Brooke Bower, Hardball producer, describes candidates' actions, the clicking of the cameras, and the hush in the room as the debate started.