Skip to comments.The Debate Romney Won: Strong moments on key issues
Posted on 10/17/2012 10:45:19 AM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. Bullish Democrats are calling it a blow-out. Pundits are giving the president the slight edge. And the late-night insta-polls splashed across cable news chyrons initially appeared to give Obama a solid, if not game-changing, win.
But the Romney campaign spent the hours after the contest contending that the debate strengthened their position and they may have a point.
A CNN/ORC International poll published late Tuesday identified Obama has the overall winner, 46 percent to 39 percent.
But the poll also showed that Romney won on virtually every issue he's chosen to place at the center of his campaign, from handling of the economy and tax policy, to the deficit and even health care. The Republican National Committee quickly seized on the results, and blasted out screenshots of Wolf Blitzer standing behind a giant, illuminated screen displaying the findings.
"I like the numbers," said one senior Romney adviser in the lobby of a nearby Marriott hours after the debate. As he spoke, he waved an iPad with the RNC press release pulled up on the screen, and repeatedly gestured toward it as he tried to convince a small group of reporters that Romney came out on top horserace analysis be damned.
"I think the president hurt himself with women," he said. "He had no answer on gas prices, which our polling shows is one of the biggest concerns for women." He added that the president came off "as a weak leader."
Senior adviser Kevin Madden similarly highlighted Obama's response on gas prices, arguing that Romney's performance played better with the middle class than with the pundits.
Obama aides themselves seemed to grant Romney the win on the economic questions particularly his answer to an undecided voter that entailed a biting critique of Obama. Easily shifting into a stump speech riff he's been practicing for a year, Romney went through a point-by-point indictment of the president's economic record, and attempted to tap into the disillusionment many 2008 Obama supporters have expressed.
"I think you know better," Romney told the disappointed voter. "I think you know that these last four years haven't been so good as the president just described and that you don't feel like your confident that the next four years are going to be much better either."
It was Romney's strongest moment of the debate and the weakest moment for Obama, who, surprisingly, chose not to challenge the Republican on his response. The Romney campaign turned part of the exchange into a campaign ad.
After the debate, Obama surrogates emphasized topics like immigration, equal pay, and Libya, while almost completely ignoring Romney's rhetoric on the economy.
Their only statements on the issue: Top Obama aides repeated the president's prepared attack that Romney's tax and jobs plans are "sketchy."
"If you go with Gov. Romney, you're going to risk going back to the same failed polices that wrecked the economy and he's got a sketchy deal on taxes and jobs that won't work for you," said senior adviser David Plouffe on the message Obama tried to convey on the economy in the debate.
But Team Romney smelled victory on that issue. A Romney aide said afterward that he is still planning to give a major speech on debt and deficits between the third debate and Election Day.
Once Biden, Twice Barack
Key Moment: The insertion of Fast and Furious into the the Presidential Debates.
It was good to hear Romney finally mention tariffs in regard to China. However, he still has the wrong perspective. He wants to apply them only when China cheats such as currency manipulation. But China doesn’t have to cheat because their people make so little.
It’s a bad idea to trade a lot with China as long as we have unemployment, rules or not because of the wage differential.