Tortoise and the Hare

14 Oct

1stpresdebate Non-partisan hat on? My guy fell into most of the pitfalls that incumbents always try to avoid, clearly rattled early on about how Mittens totally changed the way his m.o. when he came to talking about taxes and how he defends against the standard (and factual, from his proposed policies) “cutting taxes on the rich” attack. His newly discovered “man o’ the middle class” was a stark departure from the “don’t attack success” line used the past a year and half, right? Unbelievable.

Mr. Gekko was actually so uber-confident that he came off as very bullying early on, but he did manage to temper it. The president’s negative body language and reactions weren’t quite as drastic as what we saw with Bush in ’04 in the first one v. Kerry, but there were a lot of similarities. He was stuck on talking points quite a bit and I have to say I was completely shocked that he didn’t hit harder on Romneycare. For months, progressives waited for the moment where the president, cool and collected, would be able to turn to the governor who implemented a nearly identical approach in Massachusetts and completely school him as he touted the benefits of his signature domestic achievement. He just didn’t deliver like we all expected.

I can’t deny we had an off night here. Romney came to win and Obama appeared detached. Uncharacteristic for the usually eloquent and energized president, but not uncharacteristic for other incumbents in that first debate.

Fortunately, I believe the facts are still overwhelmingly on our side (“Scoreboard!”-Bill Clinton, DNC ’12 Keynote) . . . and Round 2 comes very soon.

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