Saturday Night Live may have gone so far downhill that it's broadcasting from the bottom of the Grand Canyon, but one of the more recent amusing recurring characters is Jacob the Bar Mitzvah Boy. Portrayed by Vanessa Breyer, he shows up periodically during their news segment to recite the history of various parts of Jewish culture. The joke is that no matter how the news anchors try to interact with Jacob or whatever they ask Jacob, Jacob will not respond and will simply nervously return to his report and pick up reading right where he left off. Watch an appearance here.
Sen. Lindsay Graham's performance at tonight's debate of the lower crop of GOP candidates was reminiscent of a Jacob skit. No matter what was asked, Graham had his prepared statements. What he wanted us all to know is that the Islamic State is coming to kill us all unless we send more troops to the Middle East (which he would do as commander in chief) and that Hillary Clinton is terrible in every single way, but he had been dealing with her for 20 years and knows how to handle her.
He was not going to be dissuaded from his prepared statements in any way. When asked about how he would improve the economy, he spent his entire time imploring the viewer not to vote for Clinton if he or she wanted "a better life." His commitment reached its strangest point when he was asked to weigh in on the Planned Parenthood debate and responded instead by nearly repeating, point for point, all of his arguments for sending ground troops to Iraq and Syria to fight ISIS, using the poor record on women's rights in Middle Eastern countries as only the briefest justification.
Graham did manage to rush briefly through comments about his personal life and the death of his parents toward the end of debate, which actually prompted people to start Googling him.
We'll have more blogging about the candidates and their statements and we'll be livetweeting the main debate as well.