Those like us thinking this evening's gubernatorial debate - apparently the final, and aired on KGW of Portland - between Democratic incumbent Ted Kulongoski and Republican challenger Ron Saxton might turn really explosive, watching a faceoff a good deal less startling than that.
As before, neither did badly, and neither overwhelmed. We heard no really inspiring rhetorical flourishes.
Of the two, Saxton's presentation was smoother; he seemed the more comfortable. Kulongoski's was less so (he got rid of the crutch word "suggest" but replaced it with "actually"), but he did make coherent arguments for both sides of the case: The merit of his re-election, and case for Saxton as an improvement. Saxton built a clear enough case against Kulongoski, but when asked - at one point bluntly - what vision he has for the state, he flubbed, and seemed to have little to say beyond improved efficiencies and a lid on taxes.
They disagreed on where they're at as the campaign winds to a conclusion: Kulongoski maintained he's comfortably ahead, and Saxton that the race is very close and he's about to cross the line. On this issue, at least, we'll get a definitive answer soon.