McCain's debate with Obama went well and he was viewed as having done better than expected. Unfortunately for him, Obama was also viewed as doing better than expected and was seen as looking Presidential, further cementing his standing and locking in a lead in the polls that had become rather substantial. The Vice Presidential debate was the most watched in history and Palin was given high marks for her performance, but unfortunately for the Republican ticket, Biden was also on his game that night and also came across well. There were no changes in the polling numbers and the number of undecided voters began to quickly dwindle. The second and third debates caused little change as well.
With Obama spending 110 million dollars on TV advertising in October alone, including 30 minute specials on each of the major networks, McCain was hard pressed to make up the necessary ground to win the election after being outspent by 3 to 1 for TV adds over that time period. He couldn't count on regular TV to help put in a good word for him either, as late night political jokes are running at a pace of 7 jokes against McCain/Palin for every 1 joke against Obama/Biden and a study of news stories on McCain and Obama since the end of the conventions found that 57% of news stories about McCain were negative while only 29% were for Obama.<ref>http://elections.foxnews.com/2008/10/22/study-shows-mccain-media-coverage-negative/</ref> A later study by the independent Pew Research Center found that the
discrepency had grown even worse. McCain had 57% of the articles about him negative while only 14% were positive, while Obama had more positive articles than negative. The only network to achieve a balance, 40% negative for both, was [[Fox News]].<ref>http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,445846,00.html</ref>
== General Strategy ==