Readers of these pages won’t be surprised to hear non-leftists suggest that Mitt Romney won last night’s debate.
But let me tell you of a few early reactions you might not have heard about (other than in Stacy McCain’s excellent article) and which are perhaps more informative simply due to their objective or even anti-Romney fundamental nature, starting with the rabid Obamaphiles at MSNBC:
Again, those were all on MSNBC. The fact that an outlet so biased against Romney had no choice but to make statements like these; the reality was that clear.
Influential Democratic strategist James Carville said that Obama looked like he would rather have been somewhere else.
In terms of more objective measures of who won the debate:
The question is whether the debate performance moved voters, i.e. whether it moved undecided voters to Romney and whether it re-energized Republican voters, activists, and current or potential volunteers and donors. I expect it must.
In addition to Romney and his campaign, the most relieved people of the night must be Republican congressional candidates across the country. If Romney can win with coattails, or even if Romney loses but prevents Obama from having coattails, it’s a massive benefit for those candidates and for the nation. After all, Republican control of the Senate would make a tremendous difference no matter who is president.
In the wake of Todd Akin and other memories of Republicans who can fairly be portrayed as stupid or extreme, Romney needed to come across as intelligent, reasonable, and able to connect with people of all stripes. In addition to his serious but likeable demeanor, his repeated statements about how he was able to work with Democrats in the Massachusetts legislature to “get things done”, in stark contrast to Obama’s “my way or the highway” approach, was very effective, in part thanks to Barack Obama’s failure to use any of his most aggressive talking points.
Between Romney giving the best debate performance of his life and Obama giving his worst, Wednesday’s debate was a huge win for Republican electoral hopes next month.
Keep an eye on tomorrow’s employment report where, if the trend continues, the unemployment rate may drop to 8% or even 7.9% but primarily because people are dropping out of the work force much faster than they are getting jobs. Since Obama took office, more than 8.4 million people have dropped out of the work force. If they were still in the work force, the reported unemployment rate would be over 11 percent. The final employment report before the election comes just 5 days before the November 6th election date.
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