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The Best Presidential Debate Performance
Townhall.com ^ | October 5, 2012 | Mona Charen

Posted on 10/05/2012 3:40:23 AM PDT by Kaslin

It's impossible to overstate the effect that Mitt Romney's performance in the first presidential debate has had on conservatives and Republicans. The past four years have been a torment as we've watched a committed left-wing activist grease the skids for America's decline into a socialist state. Our TV screens have featured images of violent protests in Greece, Italy and Spain as their socialist paper boats capsize.

Yet the Obama Administration's resolute march into that dead end has proceeded apace. There was a brief bloom of hope that the Supreme Court would save the country from the worst time bomb of the Obama presidency, but a late betrayal by a conservative justice extinguished it.

The past few weeks have been especially painful as Mr. Obama seemed to gain traction in the polls and escape responsibility for the completely foreseeable results of his policies -- economic enfeeblement, rising poverty and dependency, loss of world influence and looming insolvency. More than that, a mendacious address by Bill Clinton, blaming the economic meltdown of 2008 on free markets and Republicans, seemed to be the only argument on offer -- and one that voters were inclined to accept.

The Romney campaign seemed to be missing in action. Increasingly desperate conservatives (this columnist included) begged him to improve his television ads, which were insipid and off-topic; they pleaded with him to "go big" and address the crisis the Obama presidency has created for the nation; and they warned that the Obama campaign's lies about Romney's tax proposals should not go unrebutted. Incredibly, polls were showing that voters trusted Obama more than Romney even on the matter of taxes, though Republicans are well known to be the party of tax cuts.

The feeling on the right was that the fate of the nation was really at stake. Due to a tendentious and corrupt press, an inattentive electorate and a watery nominee, the country might be on the verge of an irreversible disaster -- reelecting an incompetent leftist ideologue. It was a nightmare.

So it was more than partisan glee that lifted our spirits when a supremely skilled, razor-sharp Romney sailed to victory over Obama in Denver. It was the release of years of pent-up frustration at the fact that Mr. Obama has skated by with platitudes, lies, misrepresentations and "cool," while the nation we love, still "the last best hope of earth," seemed to be sliding toward the drain.

With a brilliant and nearly perfectly pitched performance, Mitt Romney highlighted Mr. Obama's distortions and lies, sometimes with simple declarative sentences ("Virtually everything he just said about my tax plan is inaccurate"), and sometimes with humor. When Obama recited one of his favorite faux facts, that companies get "a tax break for shipping jobs overseas," Romney, in one of his tidy and organized catalogue of corrections, responded: "You said you get a deduction for taking a plant overseas. Look, I've been in business for 25 years. I have no idea what you're talking about. I maybe need to get a new accountant."

The mythical tax break for shipping jobs overseas, a staple of Obama rhetoric for more than four years, is a perfect encapsulation of the story of this presidency. Obama seems to be identifying a problem, except that his description is false. And if it were true, why did Obama do nothing about it when his party controlled both houses of Congress?

Yet he has repeated this falsehood, along with so many others, to rousing cheers and approval from a Nobel Prize winning economist and most of the press. He has never been pressed on his serial dishonesty and low demagoguery. He has lied with impunity, until now.

On Wednesday night in Denver, Mitt Romney pulled the statue from its plinth. He did so without showing disrespect for the man or the office he holds. With calm command of the facts, he expertly punctured the inflated balloon of complacent self-regard that President Obama has become, all the while keeping his focus on the larger matter at hand: how to remove the strangling grip of the state from the economy's neck.

One debate does not usually decide an election. Mr. Obama will doubtless arrive in New York better prepared on October 16. But Mitt Romney, in one quite dazzling performance, has transformed the image of the president and of himself. It was the absolute best presidential debate performance I have ever seen -- and it didn't come a moment too soon.


TOPICS: Editorial; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: 2012election; barackobama; debates; mittromney

1 posted on 10/05/2012 3:40:26 AM PDT by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin


2 posted on 10/05/2012 3:49:42 AM PDT by Iron Munro (Obamaspeak: An army of pompous phrases marching across the landscape in search of an idea.)
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To: Kaslin

very well articulated article....


3 posted on 10/05/2012 4:05:33 AM PDT by ConservativeDude
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To: Iron Munro
When only a Presidential "Face Palm" will suffice.


4 posted on 10/05/2012 4:27:24 AM PDT by spokeshave (The only people better off today than 4 years ago are the Prisoners at Guantanamo.)
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To: Kaslin; xzins

Romney did a good job but his positions were largely espousing progressive positions that are traditionally not considered conservative. He continued to espouse the current high taxes on “the rich” and the wasteful spending on “education”.

It wasn’t that Romney’s performance was the best ever. It was just that Obama’s was the worst of all time. Obama proved he is not qualified to run a hot dog stand. Romney proved he is a very smart RINO.

Romney will probably win but let’s not pretend he was Reaganesque. He wasn’t even close.


5 posted on 10/05/2012 4:27:48 AM PDT by P-Marlowe (There can be no Victory without a fight and no battle without wounds.)
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To: ConservativeDude

Romney was great, not to doubt it. But it was like watching a football team win by a huge margin. You look closely at the aftermath and wonder about the margin. Was the winner THAT good, or was the loser SO BAD it made the winner look so good? In that context, it still doesn’t explain the margin we saw Wednesday night. Add “expectations” to the mix and you learn more. The news media painted Obama as “expected” to be great, Romney was painted to be “weak.” When the result was the opposite of “expected” the margin was magnified. Most if the shock of the results was the flash of backfire from too much hype from the media. We simply saw Romney at his very best and Obama at his very worst and the result is a margin of victory or defeat that will be studied for years to come. But a great deal of that perceived margin belongs to the press who also was SOUNDLY defeated Wednesday night. To me, the defeat of the press was a greater victory. It was heartening that Romney won soundly. It was more heartening that both Obama and the press were defeated by an historical margin of their own making.


6 posted on 10/05/2012 4:38:29 AM PDT by ThePatriotsFlag
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To: P-Marlowe
Romney will probably win

Really hurts you to write that. I wondered how the FReeper Romney haters, the only, self declared, real conservatives, would react to the debate, and you have shown it.

Newsflash !!! Ronald Reagan is dead {oh, BTW, he was a great President, but he was far from the stature being attributed to him}.

7 posted on 10/05/2012 4:40:01 AM PDT by USS Alaska (Nuke the terrorist savages, start today.)
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To: P-Marlowe

“It was just that Obama’s was the worst of all time”

I disgree. Romney was superb. He reduced Obama to what we saw, and he’ll do it again in the upcoming debates. Obama can come out next time with more gunpowder but he’ll still be shooting blanks.


8 posted on 10/05/2012 4:54:36 AM PDT by cymbeline
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To: P-Marlowe; Kaslin; Jim Robinson; wmfights

Romney’s positions on so many issues are not conservative. In order to support him, most conservatives on Free Republic have said that it is only because Obama is worse, and that they’ll give him heck while he’s in office any time he strays from conservative principles. We’ll see if that’s true.

I worry about it, though. There’s much exultation over Romney’s debate victory over Obama. The issues touched on highlighted a few non-conservative positions, as you’ve pointed out. RomneyCare is one and the Education Department is another. Imposing health care at a state level is still a violation of personal freedom and imposing federal education directives on local schools is another violation. The constitution does not say that because the fed can’t violate freedom that a state can. That is not the intent nor meaning of states’ rights.

So, Romney did NOT say that he considers these a violation, he said simply that his ideas in those areas are not as much a violation as are Obama’s.

We haven’t even begun discussing abortion, guns, gay marriage, and a host of other concerns. On all of these, Romney offers a “less of this” view instead of a “none of this” view.

If Romney wins, and he might, we will have conservatives exulting over installing a person they know to be a liberal. I’m fearful they’ll forget their pledge to hold him accountable amidst all the celebration over defeating Obama.

And, I’m certain that Romney’s “slower/lesser erosion of freedom liberalism” will get more firmly implanted in the republican party.

Conservatives will have to go elsewhere. We’ll be viewed as the Amish and the Hasidics of the political landscape; not keeping up with the new republicanism that incorporates gays, gun control, aborted babies, federal education directives, libertarian justices, and mandated health care. This will have us being the outcasts.

We’ll be outside the camp bearing reproach.

Watch and see. It’s a matter of time....and not that much time. It’s already well down the road.


9 posted on 10/05/2012 5:13:26 AM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! True supporters of our troops pray for their victory!)
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To: USS Alaska; xzins

I have always said that Romney will probably win. He is going to win by angling for votes of dissolutioned liberals and “moderate” independents.

Romney did a good job of expressing his concerns for continuing many of the wasteful entitlement programs and high tax rates for the rich and high rates of Federal spending on stuff like education.

There were many times during the debate where I just cringed at Romney’s knee jerk liberalism. He did, however, make it sound like he was espousing conservative principles. But when you examine what he said, not much of it was what I would consider conservative by any measure.


10 posted on 10/05/2012 5:18:29 AM PDT by P-Marlowe (There can be no Victory without a fight and no battle without wounds.)
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To: P-Marlowe; USS Alaska

I can vouch that marlowe has been saying for months that Romney will probably win. I, on the other hand, even though I agree with Marlow on many things, did not buy into that.

I believed Romneycare, acceptance of gays, limited pro-choice, and limited gun control would render Romney unable to defend against Obama’s simply being able to say, “You support this, too.”

But, in the debate, when Obama cited RomneyCAre, Romney told how his government health care was better than Obama’s health care. First, Romney said that kids still get to stay on their parent’s policies until they’re 26 years old, and that pre-existing conditions won’t keep them from getting government-directed insurance. He then pointed out that his plan doesn’t have death panels and a few other items that ObamaCare does.

NOTE: Romney didn’t say “Government imposed health care is a violation of individual responsibility and freedom.”

I’m beginning to slide Marlowe’s direction. I do think Romney improved his chances of victory the other day, but I also think that Darth Barry has 2 more debates and a month of free air time from the media to brainwash the people.

Since the voting public gets its news from Letterman, Comedey Central, and sitcoms like sex in the city, I’m sure their writers at the start of their new seasons have already coordinated their efforts with the Obama team.

I do not think it will be an easy task for Romney.

All 3rd party candidates, in my humble opinion, have been dismal at working to get out the message that they are attempting to build a new conservative coalition for the future. Part of that is the fault of being blocked by laws designed to help the 2 major parties and hinder 3rd parties, but another part of that is simply lack of ability.

At this point, I’m despondent about any candidate I know of.


11 posted on 10/05/2012 5:38:58 AM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! True supporters of our troops pray for their victory!)
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To: cymbeline
Yes. Romney was superb. He was concise and articulate; he was enthusiastically confident. Only the most hardened liberal moonbat (i.e. the liberal media) could come away thinking he won only because Zero was, well, a big "zero"!

The media keep claiming that this is a "new" Romney, but it's not. This is the same Romney that's been out there on the hustings. It's just now that most people got to see him without the "news" media "nothing-to-see-here" filter.
The Romney people need to realize this and keep it up. Slam the media hard, they're not going to cut Romney any slack, especially now that he has cut their puffed-up, seemingly larger-than-life selected boy-king down to the midget size he belongs.

12 posted on 10/05/2012 5:40:41 AM PDT by jeffc (The U.S. media are our enemy)
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To: xzins

When it comes down to brass tacks Romney looked great and Obama looked like a tired tyrant awaiting the inevitable.

There is a lot of glee on what a spectacular job Romney did, but when you examine what he actually said, there wasn’t a lot there that would give comfort to small government conservatives.

The image he portrayed was Reaganesque, but the positions he espoused were Romneyesque. Obama’s performance was so bad that the janitor who cleaned up the auditorium after the debate would have mopped the floor with him.


13 posted on 10/05/2012 5:58:50 AM PDT by P-Marlowe (There can be no Victory without a fight and no battle without wounds.)
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To: P-Marlowe

Look at the Obama jobs numbers in the chart on Household Data I posted on Front Page sidebar.

The guy has a brilliance for manipulation, and it shows.

I wouldn’t count Barry out yet.


14 posted on 10/05/2012 6:23:36 AM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! True supporters of our troops pray for their victory!)
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To: xzins; P-Marlowe
I can vouch that marlowe has been saying for months that Romney will probably win. I, on the other hand, even though I agree with Marlow on many things, did not buy into that.

I know that the two of you, both self declared, the last of the real conservatives, the FReepers that denigrate the rest of us, as rinos, hate the thought of Romney as President.

I'm not wild about mittens, BUT I look at obama, and there is such a gap between those two men and the way America will go, there is no comparison.

I am praying for, working for and donating to the Romney campaign and hope that the President in 2013 will be Mitt Romney. We cannot stand four more months, let alone four more years of obama.

15 posted on 10/05/2012 6:45:29 AM PDT by USS Alaska (Nuke the terrorist savages, start today.)
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To: xzins; P-Marlowe; Kaslin; Jim Robinson; wmfights
If Romney wins, and he might, we will have conservatives exulting over installing a person they know to be a liberal. I’m fearful they’ll forget their pledge to hold him accountable amidst all the celebration over defeating Obama.

And, I’m certain that Romney’s “slower/lesser erosion of freedom liberalism” will get more firmly implanted in the republican party.

Conservatives will have to go elsewhere. We’ll be viewed as the Amish and the Hasidics of the political landscape; not keeping up with the new republicanism that incorporates gays, gun control, aborted babies, federal education directives, libertarian justices, and mandated health care. This will have us being the outcasts.

We’ll be outside the camp bearing reproach.


Amen!

That's dead on.
16 posted on 10/05/2012 8:16:07 AM PDT by SoConPubbie (Mitt and Obama: They're the same poison, just a different potency.)
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To: SoConPubbie

Thanks, SoCon.

Something like illegal amnesty would wake them up, but no one’s going to talk that subject.

It’s a 3rd rail for Romney with his ABO conservatives.


17 posted on 10/05/2012 8:28:43 AM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! True supporters of our troops pray for their victory!)
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To: USS Alaska; xzins

If you had paid attention to the debate you would have realized that Romney won the debate by taking “moderate” positions and taking away Obama’s thunder. Romney advocated continued high taxes on the rich, continued unnecessary spending on education, Government mandated healthcare, and really didn’t espouse any conservative principles other than a general call for more “limited” government, and states rights.

Again, Romney controlled the debate, made Obama look like an idiot, and will probably win the election. That does not make Romney a conservative, and does not mean that he won the debate by advocating conservative principles. He didn’t. He won the debate because Obama was completely unprepared to even stand at the podium.


18 posted on 10/05/2012 9:58:04 AM PDT by P-Marlowe (There can be no Victory without a fight and no battle without wounds.)
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To: P-Marlowe
If you wanted Obama to look like a fool that was good TV I guess, but from reading some of Romney's responses you cringed if you are for limited government.
19 posted on 10/05/2012 10:01:17 AM PDT by rollo tomasi (Working hard to pay for deadbeats and corrupt politicians.)
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To: USS Alaska; P-Marlowe
the last of the real conservatives, the FReepers that denigrate the rest of us,

Actually, I haven't denigrated the rest of you. I've pretty much said that I think that you're wrong and that I hope you live up to your pledge to hold Romney's feet to the fire.

Saying someone is wrong is not besmirching you any more than saying my grandson worked a homework problem wrong.

Marlowe is right, though, that Romney did not espouse any conservative economic plans the other day.

His riff on the declaration of independence...life, liberty, pursuit of happiness...that was conservative. (Although I doubt he'd end up in "life" at the same place that Rick Santorum does.)

20 posted on 10/05/2012 10:18:35 AM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! True supporters of our troops pray for their victory!)
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To: Kaslin
Is Mona Charen ever wrong?

She run circles around Peggy Loonan.

21 posted on 10/05/2012 10:50:56 AM PDT by what's up
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To: xzins; P-Marlowe; Kaslin; Jim Robinson
Romney’s positions on so many issues are not conservative.

Romney needs to get elected if he is going to do anything.

I think one way conservatives hurt themselves is by assuming that a majority of the country agrees with them. In my experience most conservatives are really strong in their beliefs until it might affect them. For example, we hear that conservatives want entitlements fixed, but when we discussed military pensions being changed from a defined benefit program available only to those who stay in for 20+ years to a type of 401K in which all service members would participate even here at a conservative website freepers were upset with the proposed change.

My point is Romney has to bounce around the middle if he wants to get elected. One thing that was very clear in the debate is Romney is very bright and understands the problems and has a good idea how to fix them. It will be the Tea Party presence in the House and Senate that will pull Romney to the right.

22 posted on 10/05/2012 11:09:53 AM PDT by wmfights
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To: wmfights; P-Marlowe; Kaslin; Jim Robinson

The problem with the 401k is not that it’s a 401k, it’s that service-members have always taken less pay up front, deferring it toward a first class retirement, instead.

I personally liked the original government’s rewarding of veteran’s with land. Low pay and get a farm.

Most of them included native Americans as original occupants, but the idea had merits. :>)

So, if you go the 401k route, then you’ve got to put more pay upfront into the equation or you’ve got to increase 401k contributions to the level of attractiveness.

I’ve spent a couple years absent family in remote and combat areas, wmfights. I don’t recall to many clamoring to go at those times.


23 posted on 10/05/2012 11:16:02 AM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! True supporters of our troops pray for their victory!)
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To: P-Marlowe; xzins
...but when you examine what he actually said, there wasn’t a lot there that would give comfort to small government conservatives.

I disagree.

I think one area where Romney is trying to turn govt to a more conservative position is on taxes. If he can reduce rates and eliminate deductions we move closer to a flat tax and as deductions are eliminated we move away from govt control over us. Also, I thought his comment about vouchers for kids with disabilities, or in failing schools, moves us away from the govt controlled unionized monopoloy we have now and introduces competition into education.

I would note that in both examples he's attacking the problem from a "sensitive" angle rather than from strictly a dollar and cents approach. The end result is the same, but he's trying to reach the middle.

24 posted on 10/05/2012 11:25:29 AM PDT by wmfights
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To: xzins; P-Marlowe; Kaslin; Jim Robinson
So, if you go the 401k route, then you’ve got to put more pay upfront into the equation or you’ve got to increase 401k contributions to the level of attractiveness.

By missing the point you've illustrated the point. We all tend to do the same thing. If it's our benefit that is affected our view changes from the macro "driven by principal" to the micro "it's not fair" view. It's just one reason conservatives lose elections that get into details of how programs will get cut.

25 posted on 10/05/2012 11:34:29 AM PDT by wmfights
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To: USS Alaska
I'm not wild about mittens, BUT I look at 0bama, and there is such a gap between those two men and the way America will go, there is no comparison.

You're right, but that gap is not because 0bama is a liberal and Romney a conservative. The gap is because 0bama is the most extreme leftist/Marxist ever to have won the Presidency. 0bama is also a huge crony capitalist.

If Bill Clinton were running against 0bama, there would be a similar gap evident.

It remains to be seen how conservative a Romney administration will be, but there is no doubt that 0bama must be defeated, if the Republic is to stand.

Those of us who will be holding our noses and voting Romney must join with the true Romney enthusiasts to 1) get Romney elected, and 2) hold him accountable to principles of American Liberty and Opportunity after he wins. There should be no honeymoons, just bold, tough, necessary action right out of the box.

26 posted on 10/05/2012 12:44:24 PM PDT by sargon
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To: wmfights; P-Marlowe; Kaslin; Jim Robinson

I’m not missing your point at all. You want the troops to line up and take a cut along with everyone else, supposedly.

But, it’s never that. They are the easiest cut for any government until the time comes that they’ve got to put a real, capable military in the field. Then, they either force them to go (draft), or they suddenly repair their lagging pay and lagging numbers.

Task Force Smith proves that the lagging military size which too often begins major wars, comes at the expense of huge casualties initial casualties. So, the negligence is paid for with someone’s blood.

All well and good for civilians to bat around in ivory towers, but when the blood starts flowing the ivory tower folks are all not present and not accounted for.

So, I’ll tell you and all what I’ve told everyone else. When they get all the other cuts done, when the education department and it’s useless hundreds of thousands of workers are gone, when money stops flowing to planned parenthood, when the EPA no longer exists, when the National Endowment for the Arts is no more and when GSA isn’t running wild million dollar parties, THEN come looking for those who shed blood, and we’ll gladly sacrifice for the nation.

Prior to that the money they give up just goes to some bureaucrat sitting in a bathtub with a glass of $10,000 champagne in his hand.


27 posted on 10/05/2012 1:26:50 PM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! True supporters of our troops pray for their victory!)
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To: wmfights; xzins

A military pension is not an entitlement. It is deferred compensation. Military members are clearly underpaid for the services they perform while they serve in the military and they are later compensated with more generous retirement benefits. Minimum wage laws and hourly laws do not apply to members of the military. If they did, then they would all make more than we do.


28 posted on 10/05/2012 1:53:50 PM PDT by P-Marlowe (There can be no Victory without a fight and no battle without wounds.)
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