The Clarion-Ledger, 10/8/8

Mississippians split on whether Republican John McCain or Democrat Barack Obama came out ahead in the second presidential debate Tuesday, but some political analysts said neither candidate lost.

Debate-watch parties were held statewide to see the candidates discuss foreign and domestic policies at Belmont University in Nashville. The second face-off came almost two weeks after Obama and McCain debated at the University of Mississippi in Oxford.

Mary Deason, a political science professor at Ole Miss who watched the first debate, said the candidates were much more aggressive Tuesday. She said the tone is an indication that “the race is tight and the lead is going back and forth.”

“It’s only going to get more aggressive from here on out,” she added.