Tuesday, October 23, 2012
3rd Presidential Debate Thoughts...
Let the debate begin...
Let's get this out of the way. I think President Obama won this debate by a pretty clear margin. He played offense most of the night, made no major gaffs and seemed, well, presidential. His opponent, Mitt Romney seemed awfully timid this evening and I suspect right wing talk show types will have their way with him on tomorrow's shows. Romney took a total pass on criticizing the President on Benghazi, which surprised me. The strategy must have been for team Romney to not attack the President on this issue for fear of looking opportunistic. Most of the rest of the evening was spent with Mr. Obama reminding Mr. Romney of his various positions he's had on a variety of foreign policy issues during the campaign. Mr. Romney spent much of the night agreeing with Mr. Obama on much of his foreign policy decisions.
Mostly, Romney would hear the President say something, Romney would say we need to do it differently, and then reword Obama's original answer into something of his own. It was odd, it was weird and I don't think Team Romney will benefit very much from this performance tonight.
The real question will be was tonight's debate a game changer. I don't think so. There were no fiery exchanges, no off the chain claims made by either man and nothing really new came out. It was sort of dull. So, while team Obama may feel great this evening, I'm not sure he ever landed the sort of punch he wanted to on Mr. Romney. This debate was, I think, the least-watched of the three presidential debates. There was Monday Night Football and game 7 of the NL Championship series. Lots of other options for people to consider.
The national polls are mostly tied, the state polls seem to still be pretty volatile. Two weeks to go until election day and I'm having a hard time someone undecided will walk into the voting stall and make up their mind based on anything either man said tonight.
Nice win for Team Obama, but I'm not sure what it does for them. I think Romney supporters feel like their guy didn't fight hard enough. Time will tell if that was a mistake or not.