Headlines at Drudge:
10.31 pm. Look: you know how much I love the guy, and you know how much of a high information viewer I am, and I can see the logic of some of Obama's meandering, weak, professorial arguments. But this was a disaster for the president for the key people he needs to reach, and his effete, wonkish lectures may have jolted a lot of independents into giving Romney a second look.
Obama looked tired, even bored; he kept looking down; he had no crisp statements of passion or argument; he wasn't there. He was entirely defensive, which may have been the strategy. But it was the wrong strategy. At the wrong moment.
The person with authority on that stage was Romney - offered it by one of the lamest moderators ever, and seized with relish. This was Romney the salesman. And my gut tells me he sold a few voters on a change tonight. It's beyond depressing. But it's true....
10.29 pm. How is Obama's closing statement so fucking sad, confused and lame? He choked. He lost. He may even have lost the election tonight.
10.19 pm. A reader writes:
My wife and I are feeling the same hysteria you're expressing. Romney, while coming off as more than a bit aggressive, is clear, authoritative, and on point. Obama is a confusing, meandering, stuttering mess.
I'm a high information voter, so I know the context of Obama's complaints about Romney's tax plan not adding up, or comments about Medicare, Dodd-Frank, etc. I also know when Romney is lying through his teeth or contradicting his own past statements. Most of your Dish readers are probably in the same boat. But America as a whole? I'm not so sure. And to them I'd think Romney looks like he's creaming Obama.
And given how badly Romney's years at Bain have played in the media and ad wars to this date, I'm truly impressed by how well Romney has been able to play up his years of business experience. I have to admit, the way he's spinning it, not only does it sound impressive, but incredibly relevant to the issues being discussed.
10.06 pm. I find myself bored silly by Obama. If I am bored silly by this wonkish lecture, and his refusal to rebut specific points, i.e. lies, Obama's in trouble.
9.22 pm. Notice how Romney is talking about actual individuals, while Obama is talking abstract ideas. And Obama has not made a clear simple argument for getting more jobs. How did he not prepare an answer for that?
9.18 pm. Obama's looking down as Romney speaks. Horrible TV. Why doesn't Obama just say: "How do we afford this? Where will you get the money to pay for the big tax cuts?" I hate to say this but Romney is connecting more than Obama, it seems to me. Obama is professorial and wonkish. He's on defense.
9.16 pm. Man, Obama is boring and abstract. He's putting us to sleep. I get his points but he is entirely wonky tonight. And he is on the defensive. Romney's crazy math is somehow made legitimate. Romney is kicking the president's ass.
9.11 pm. A good volley back from Obama but Romney is coming off like Reagan, and has managed to provide anecdotes and stories, while Obama is a little wonky. But when Romney actually said that he wasn't cutting taxes for the very wealthy, it seems completely out of sync with his actual proposal.
9.07 pm. A nervous but competent beginning by Obama, but I'm struck by the visuals. Romney just looks like a classic president and Obama a very different one. The visuals are with Romney. And his answer was a total re-boot on compassion. This first round goes solidly to Romney.
Bewildered and lost without his teleprompter, President Obama flailed all around the debate stage last night. He was stuttering, nervous and petulant. It was like he had been called in front of the principal after goofing around for four years and blowing off all his homework.
Not since Jimmy Carter faced Ronald Reagan has the U.S. presidency been so embarrassingly represented in public. Actually, that’s an insult to Jimmy Carter
The split screen was most devastating. Mitt Romney spoke forthrightly, with carefully studied facts and details at the ready. He looked right at the president and accused him of being miles out of his depth.
Mr. Obama? His eyes were glued to his lectern, looking guilty and angry and impatient with all the vagaries of Democracy. This debate was seriously chaffing him.
What exactly was Mr. Obama’s strategy here? Did he figure with so many people unemployed in this abomination of an economy he should go for the sympathy vote? Like voters could relate to a guy who is just scared pantsless that he is about to lose his job?
In the middle of the blood-letting segment about jobs, Mr. Romney said good-naturedly: “This is fun.”
Almost pleading, Mr. Obama reached out to the moderator for a lifeline: “You may want to move onto another topic.”
When an unexpected noise went off behind him, Mr. Obama wheeled around to look as if to ask, “Time to go?”
Turns out, it was the first honest thing we have heard from Mr. Obama’s campaign: The president really was absolutely terrible on the debate stage.
Maybe the next debate will be on something other than the economy that won’t be so bad for Mr. Obama. Perhaps they could hold a debate on street organizing.
Who knew anyone on the planet could make Mitt Romney look easy, relaxed, smooth and human?
But Mr. Romney was absolutely on fire Wednesday night. He had command of countless specifics from voters and business owners from all across country.
He explained complex issues clearly, concisely and with good humor. He was not angry. But he was direct and pointed.
“I’ve been in business for 25 years. I have no idea what you’re talking about,”Romney said in the most devastating understatement of the night. “I maybe need to get a new accountant.”
Like a prosecutor in court, Mr. Romney went after Mr. Obama’s record and eviscerated him about the terrible economy and Mr. Obama’s belief in “trickle down government.”
Mr. Romney also came off as genuine by looking Mr. Obama in the eye with every criticism. He also looked moderator Jim Lehrer in the eye when he told him that if he became president he would cut funding to public broadcasting, possibly eliminating his job....
Back in Massachusetts there's some gloating going on, but I suppose that's to be expected.