Frequent references to Michigan where he grew up and where the debate was held were clever and well received in the hall. Failed to take down Giuliani on the line-item veto or anything else, but was comfortable and fluid discussing trade and economic growth. Stumbled a bit over presidential prerogatives on going to war, but smartly shifted to bashing Iran. Still appears challenged on humor and feel-your-pain connection too much robotic 0's-and-1's rhetoric, although his rehearsed dig at Fred "Law & Order" Thompson's late entrance into the race was by acclamation the line of the night.
By Mark Halperin
Next John McCain