Mike Kueber's Blog

October 4, 2012

The morning after

Filed under: Issues,People,Politics — Mike Kueber @ 10:34 am
Tags: ,

By all accounts, Mitt Romney won last night’s debate.  Even the talking heads on MSNBC quickly and decisively conceded the issue.  Talk-show host Ed Schultz was almost apoplectic in bitterly criticizing President Obama for inadequately defending liberal causes and for failing to attack Romney’s pro-business, anti-consumer positions.

I was not surprised by Romney’s victory.  He debated superbly in virtually every debate during the Republican primaries, and he did again last night.  By contrast, President Obama came across as bored and dismissive. 

President Obama seems to be undergoing a transformation similar to that experienced by Bryant Gumbel, who as a young sports guy in the late 70s was refreshing and smart.  But Gumbel didn’t age gracefully.  By the time he went to the Today show in 1982, he was smarmy and smug.  One of President Obama’s strong suits has been his likeability, but there was minimal likeability on display last night.        

Some pundits suggested that Mitt Romney’s decisive victory was merely a first step and would not translate into a large immediate shift toward Romney by the electorate.   I disagreed with that suggestion, but the betting market appears to confirm the pundits.  According to Intrade.com this morning, President Obama continues to be the 66%-34% favorite to win the election in November. 

I made the same mistake back in 1992 following a commanding debate performance by Ross Perot.  I was sure that his bravura performance ensured that we would have a serious third-party candidate for the first time in my lifetime.  Sadly, however, Perot faded badly and turned out to be merely a spoiler.  Mitt Romney needs to keep up his attack on President Obama while simultaneously putting forward his positive message, and I have no doubt that he will.

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