I was only able to watch the first half hour of the debate last night. I don’t think I missed much since as far as I can tell, that first thirty minutes set the pattern for the rest of the debate. President Obama did a much better job than he did in the first debate, but then, he could scarcely do worse. I don’t think that Romney was quite as good as last time. Still, he was in command of all the details in a way that is simply not in Obama’s nature.
This was a “town-hall” format, in which an audience of undecided voters ask the questions of the candidates. The questions had to be submitted in advance. I do not know who picked the questions that were asked. I have to wonder about anyone who is honestly undecided at this point. Surely anyone who has been paying attention has a preference, either for or against one of these men.
I think that everyone accomplished what the set out to do. In general, Romney would speak eloquently of his plans for the future and criticize Obama’s record. Obama was combative and mostly said variants of, “you are a liar”. He kept repeating the charge that Romney wasn’t telling the truth, while saying little to defend his own record. He took credit for the expanding oil and coal production in the US, which is odd because he has been doing his best to shut down out fossil fuel industries. Romney pounced on Obama for that and for his plans to reduce the deficit. Romney made the very obvious point that Obama had doubled the deficit in the last four years so why should he be suddenly interested in balancing the budget. Obama responded with a reminder that Romney is rich and for the rich. The moderator, Candy Crowley, did her job well. She tried her best to tilt the playing field in Obama’s favor. Romney was really debating two people this evening, Obama and Crowley.
I understand that the debate grew quite bellicose after a time. It would have been quite a treat if they had actually physically attacked one another. I would pay quite a lot to see a fist fight between Romney and Obama.
So, who won? It’s hard to say. I am not sure if winning or losing something like this really means anything. Obama did well enough so the Democrats may think they have a chance in November. Romney held his own so Republicans need not feel despondent. More than that I cannot say.
- Reaction to the Second Presidential Debate (politicalwire.com)
- The Debate’s Outcome In One Picture (kaystreet.wordpress.com)
- Here’s How The Undecided Voters Were Selected To Ask Obama And Romney Questions At Tomorrow’s Debate (businessinsider.com)
- Winners, Losers From Debate Rematch Between Obama, Romney (dailyitem.com)
- Candy Crowley’s Benghazi Lifeline to Obama (frontpagemag.com)
- Candy Crowley fact checks Romney on Libya (salon.com)
- Candy won the debate (bellalu0.wordpress.com)