Open thread: The second debate

posted at 8:38 pm on October 16, 2012 by Allahpundit

9 p.m. ET across the dial, don’t miss your chance to watch a man who “really doesn’t like people” try to relate to average voters. According to Team Mitt, all they need tonight is a tie:

“He does not need to take home the same performance” as in the first debate in Denver on Oct. 3, in which Romney was widely considered the dominant debater, the aide, who is involved in the debate preparation, told National Journal on Tuesday. He said that the Romney team is preparing for a fierce attack from Obama on all fronts even though a town-hall format generally requires candidates to address questioners from the audience more than they do each other.

“They can’t afford another debate where they don’t lash out,” said the aide, who would speak only on condition of anonymity about internal debate preparations. “So we’re ready for it: the ‘47 percent’ comment, Bain Capital, the Cayman Islands” tax shelters, all of which have been staples of the Obama ad campaign in recent months…

The Romney team doesn’t expect foreign policy to dominate this debate, but they also hope to raise fresh questions over the Sept. 11 death of Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans in Libya by focusing on what they consider a misstatement by Vice President Joe Biden in his Oct. 11 debate with Rep. Paul Ryan, the aide said.

Benghazi is one obvious line of attack. Another, I hope, is Mitt trying to pin Obama down on what exactly he intends to do with a second term. For all of the Democrats’ cutesy-poo gimmicks about Romney’s evasiveness, the incumbent’s vision for America over the next four years is conspicuously thin, much to the dismay of Democratic pollsters. As for O, he’s got two basic themes, each of them potentially problematic. One: He’ll dismiss Romney’s messaging at the first debate as evidence that he’s a flip-flopper, although that’ll undercut Team Obama’s months-long messaging about what a committed neo-Goldwater ideological fanatic Mitt supposedly is. Two: He’ll go after Romney on Bain and the “47 percent,” although if he’s too nasty about it he’ll risk leaving the sort of jackhole impression that Biden left after the VP debate. Biden could get away with that because he’s Biden, because he was playing to his base, and because ultimately no one really cares what happens at the VP debate. Obama, who’s been banking on a vanishing “likeability gap” with Romney to put him over the top, really can’t. There’s very little left of Hopenchange circa 2008 as it is; if he loses his above-the-fray Bambi image too, then there’s basically nothing.

Having said that, I think there’s virtually nothing O could do onstage tonight short of barfing on someone that’ll get the left to admit afterward that he did poorly. They desperately need him to have a good performance to remain viable, and thus the narrative will make it so tomorrow even if Obama doesn’t make it so tonight. His problem is that, even with that media cushion, it’s unlikely that Romney will falter, which is really what O needs to reverse the momentum here. The only thing I can think of that might potentially get hairy for Romney is if he’s put on the spot by a questioner who’s either extremely confrontational or somehow deeply sympathetic — a “YouTube moment,” in other words. Romney can handle himself against O, but the crux of the Dems’ message against him has always been that he’s some sort of enemy of the working man. If they get a moment like that tonight, of some audience member being accusatory with Romney, that could get traction. All depends upon how he handles it, of course.

Here’s the Hot Air/Townhall Twitter widget for live-tweeting. While we wait, revisit four of Obama’s emptiest campaign promises from the last townhall debate he did in 2008, as there are bound to be a few more tonight. And bear in mind that no matter how well he does, his campaign’s still facing one last jobs report before election day — and all signs point to something not so hope-y change-y. Exit quotation from Democratic pollster Stan Greenberg: “The danger for Obama is that Romney would become the candidate of change.”



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I claim the first post tonight’s debate topic in honor of gummeandpokeme; may his Pampers Cruisers fit snugly and his mother allow him to stay up late for our entertainment.

onetrickpony on October 16, 2012 at 8:39 PM

One evening as the sun went down
And the jungle fires were burning,
Down the track came a hobo hiking,
And he said, “Boys, I’m not turning
I’m headed for a land that’s far away
Besides the crystal fountains
So come with me, we’ll go and see
The Big Rock Candy Mountains”

Norky on October 16, 2012 at 8:39 PM

Dave Axlerod here.

There are no opponents to Obama in tonight’s town hall debate except maybe one or two vastly outnumbered racists. Obama can not lose the debate! Never! No, fellow Democrats I am not scared of losing and neither should you be! Search for the truth. I tell you things and I always ask you to verify what I say. I told you yesterday that there are no dissatisfied people in America. You can go and visit any state at all. No dissatisfied person there. No one at all. There are only supporters of Barack Obama except for a few crazy constitution clingers. Everything is okay.

By Obama, I think Obama will win in this debate and the next one and go on to an easy 57 state landslide. Any talk of his defeat is merely an insane prattle. The fact is that as soon as Mitt Romney reaches the stage, Obama will besiege him and slaughter him. Wherever Romney tries to run to on the stage he will find himself encircled by Obama’s great intellect and command of the facts. Mitt Romney will be burnt. Mitt Romney will be buried. Obama will tackle him. Obama will hit him with shoes! Obama’s opponents will soon be committing suicide by the thousands as they realize that Obama can not lose.

RasThavas on October 16, 2012 at 8:40 PM

Gracious Father, please protect and guide Mitt Romney as he continues to lay out his vision for restoring and making America great again.

22044 on October 16, 2012 at 8:40 PM

Let’s get ready to rumble!

Brat on October 16, 2012 at 8:40 PM

FIFTH!!

canopfor on October 16, 2012 at 8:40 PM

It’s going to be a weird night….

idesign on October 16, 2012 at 8:41 PM

Just smile and stay relaxed Mitt, you’ve done this type of thing hundreds of times before. No pressure!

tkyang99 on October 16, 2012 at 8:41 PM

T I G E R S

(:->)

Y A N K E E S

KOOLAID2 on October 16, 2012 at 8:41 PM

I don’t see the Twitter widget, AP.

JPeterman on October 16, 2012 at 8:41 PM

Let’s kick some ample 0dumbo booty!

Sasha List on October 16, 2012 at 8:41 PM

Whenever a you say “retard,” little Trig Palin cries.
 
urban elitist on October 13, 2012 at 2:26 PM

rogerb on October 16, 2012 at 8:42 PM

Town Hall Presidential Debate: Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY

http://www.c-span.org/Debates/

canopfor on October 16, 2012 at 8:42 PM

OBAMA WON THE DEBATE!!!

Media meme already in the queue, emails ready to go, tweet drafts saved…..

……….go!!

PappyD61 on October 16, 2012 at 8:42 PM

I’m so nervous you’d think I’m debating.

buckichick1 on October 16, 2012 at 8:42 PM

Gracious Father, please protect and guide Mitt Romney as he continues to lay out his vision for restoring and making America great again.

22044 on October 16, 2012 at 8:40 PM

AMEN – may he have an Angel on his shoulder and the Good Lord’s guidance.

gophergirl on October 16, 2012 at 8:42 PM

Cracking open a FIFTH!!

canopfor on October 16, 2012 at 8:40 PM

I’m on my way!

Patrick S on October 16, 2012 at 8:42 PM

Prayers were said.

The wine has been opened.

Now, nail the bastard, Mitt. Seal the deal.

Cody1991 on October 16, 2012 at 8:42 PM

I have to go pour a drinky before the festivities begin.

Philly on October 16, 2012 at 8:43 PM

Beer… Check.
Popcorn… Check.
Remote Control… Check.

Reporting for Duty!

Corporal Tunnel on October 16, 2012 at 8:43 PM

Rip his head off, and crap down his windpipe, Mitt.

End it tonight.

wolly4321 on October 16, 2012 at 8:43 PM

Hussein’s yapping points :
* I inherited
* 47%
* Big Bird and bagainaaaaa

burrata on October 16, 2012 at 8:43 PM

It’s going to be a weird night….

idesign on October 16, 2012 at 8:41 PM

I agree. I don’t trust Crowley AT ALL!

gophergirl on October 16, 2012 at 8:44 PM

http://www.nationaljournal.com/politics/the-presidential-debate-drinking-game-barack-obama-vs-mitt-romney-take-2-20121016

three drink event-Obama congratulates his fellow Nobel prize winners-everyone in the European Union.

talkingpoints on October 16, 2012 at 8:44 PM

mixie drinkie time!

Tim_CA on October 16, 2012 at 8:44 PM

NO PRISONERS!

The War Planner on October 16, 2012 at 8:44 PM

I am praying

are we ready?

CoffeeLover on October 16, 2012 at 8:45 PM

Turning up the volume on the baseball game once Levin’s show is finished. I will follow the running commentary here, though.

22044 on October 16, 2012 at 8:45 PM

Comments are always too fast and too furious. I think I’ll just lurk the tweets.

Lurkin’ the tweets is a subdivision of surfin’ the web, ya know.

predator on October 16, 2012 at 8:45 PM

22044 on October 16, 2012 at 8:40 PM

His integrity will follow him. (it’s in the Book .. hehe)
Let’s roll !!

pambi on October 16, 2012 at 8:45 PM

Come on Mitt. You don’t need to win by 20 tonight, but by 7 would be nice.

Zaggs on October 16, 2012 at 8:45 PM

Not sure I can watch…

changer1701 on October 16, 2012 at 8:45 PM

The CEO vs. the File Clerk!

Key West Reader on October 16, 2012 at 8:45 PM

I’m hoping for an Obama stutter melt-down fest tonight

skatz51 on October 16, 2012 at 8:45 PM

Gumby’s new name is Chicken Gumbo

matthew8787 on October 16, 2012 at 8:45 PM

Gracious Father, please protect and guide Mitt Romney as he continues to lay out his vision for restoring and making America great again.

22044 on October 16, 2012 at 8:40 PM

Give him wisdom and let his words be eloquent; give him great favor in the eyes of the audience and in the hearts of Americans. Amen

Shay on October 16, 2012 at 8:45 PM

US presidential debates 2012

By coin toss, Mitt Romney gets the 1st question. – @markknoller

7 mins ago by editor

http://politics.breakingnews.com/

canopfor on October 16, 2012 at 8:46 PM

Game On! What’re the Drinking Game Keywords tonight?

Who is John Galt on October 16, 2012 at 8:46 PM

In before the riots on November 7th!

gatsbysgirlontheside on October 16, 2012 at 8:46 PM

For the VP debate:


“When a wise person debates with a fool, the fool rages and laughs, and there is no peace and quiet” – Proverbs 29:9

jake-the-goose on October 16, 2012 at 8:46 PM

I’d pray to the patron saint of debaters if there was one, but I don’t think there is. Catholics have saints for pretty much everything else. St. Jude is always the default saint, being the patron saint of impossible causes.

TxAnn56 on October 16, 2012 at 8:46 PM

Hubby in LR with Tigers game.
I’m watching debate in office with electronic ciggie and some vino !!

pambi on October 16, 2012 at 8:47 PM

It’s going to be a weird night….

idesign on October 16, 2012 at 8:41 PM

it’s gonna be fun!

Tim_CA on October 16, 2012 at 8:47 PM

Ryan: Obama will ‘try to distract this country’ tonight
on October 16, 2012 at 7:53 pm

http://www.breakingnews.com/

canopfor on October 16, 2012 at 8:47 PM

Gumby’s new name is Chicken Gumbo

matthew8787 on October 16, 2012 at 8:45 PM

..as in “keep F***ing that chicken“?

The War Planner on October 16, 2012 at 8:47 PM

My Screen Refresh button will get some work tonight !!!!

jake-the-goose on October 16, 2012 at 8:47 PM

Romney is going to do great. Everything in his life is leading to this moment.

You ultimately get in life how you treat others, and Obama’s karma is playing catch up.

matthew8787 on October 16, 2012 at 8:47 PM

MSNBC just declared Obama the winner..!

d1carter on October 16, 2012 at 8:47 PM

Hold neither high expectations for Romney nor low expectations for Obama. Here is all you need to know:

1. Candy “Sam Kinison” Crowley is in the tank for Obama
2. Gallup selected all “independent” voters from Nassau County in a dark blue state
3. Some if not many of these people will eventually be exposed as Democrat plants
4. Candy has full discretion over which pre-submitted questions to present and which candidate to present those questions to
5. Obama will get softball questions along with help from Candy
6. Romney will get hardball questions along with myriad interruptions from Candy.
7. Obama will be acclaimed the overwhelming victor of the town hall debate by the Drive-Bys shortly before the event itself has actually concluded.

Happy viewing, my friends. As usual, the lovely and ever-gracious Nicole will be watching the event on TV while I will be following it here.

ManlyRash on October 16, 2012 at 8:48 PM

Can someone recommend the best online debate link without a lot of tweets and BS on the side?

celt on October 16, 2012 at 8:48 PM

Game On! What’re the Drinking Game Keywords tonight?

Who is John Galt on October 16, 2012 at 8:46 PM

47%
Osama Bin Laden
Jobs Created

are my fav’s

Tim_CA on October 16, 2012 at 8:48 PM

Nervous, but we already know the predetermined outcome. Stand tall and strong, Mitt! Lance that boil on America’s hiney!! (No offense to Lanceman)

Sasha List on October 16, 2012 at 8:48 PM

Kick his dog eating ass Mitt. Your country needs you.

msupertas on October 16, 2012 at 8:48 PM

Gracious Father, please protect and guide Mitt Romney as he continues to lay out his vision for restoring and making America great again.

22044

Thank you for opening up the thread with our Lord to protect our Mitt.

I believe something divine has happened these last few weeks speaking directly to Americans to stand up for their country as one and protect our blessed country from this evil.

Typicalwhitewoman on October 16, 2012 at 8:48 PM

22044 on October 16, 2012 at 8:40 PM

Amen.

Mitt Romney is carrying a heavy burden. He’s a decent man who is trying to help right our ship of state and put it on a steadier course, not because he hopes to enrich himself by doing so (he’s already plenty rich), but because he believes it is the right thing to do. Let’s help him out by lifting him up in prayer.

AZCoyote on October 16, 2012 at 8:49 PM

The liberal media have finished writing their “victory for Obama” articles and are only waiting for debate quotes to plug into the right paragraphs.

They have their feet up on the desk, hands behind their heads saying “Have I got a sweet job or what?”

KCsecurity1976 on October 16, 2012 at 8:49 PM

No, as in too chicken to show up to confront worsening polls

matthew8787 on October 16, 2012 at 8:49 PM

Ryan: Obama will ‘try to distract this country’ tonight
on October 16, 2012 at 7:53 pm

http://www.breakingnews.com/

canopfor on October 16, 2012 at 8:47 PM

“Distract” would actually be a break.

He’s been trying to “destroy” it for nearly four years.

predator on October 16, 2012 at 8:49 PM

22044 on October 16, 2012 at 8:40 PM

amen

conservative tarheel on October 16, 2012 at 8:49 PM

Let’s roll!

wargamer6 on October 16, 2012 at 8:49 PM

After watching Martha Radish, I can expect anything. I will pray that Mitt has an awesome debate and puts this election away.

Philly on October 16, 2012 at 8:49 PM

I agree. I don’t trust Crowley AT ALL!

gophergirl on October 16, 2012 at 8:44 PM

Romney will be answering questions from Obama campaign ,
and debate Creepy Crawley as well as Obama ,
while Obama has to ooh and uummm and aaah and lie .
It will turn nasty very fast

burrata on October 16, 2012 at 8:49 PM

Greeny Goons Attempted crashing of tonights Debate!

Green Party protesters led away by police at Hofstra Debate [VIDEO]
on Tuesday, October 16, 2012
****************************

Civic debate isn’t the only democratic process on display in Hempstead today. Several hours before the start of the debate, various activist groups gathered across from the main entrance of Hofstra University to exercise their First Amendment rights.

Representatives from various activist groups, including PETA and the Socialist Alternative, gathered on the corner of Hempstead Turnpike and California Avenue.

After gathering alongside the other groups, Jill Stein, a Green Party candidate for president, along with her running mate Cheri Honkala, attempted to gain access to the debate hall. Stein was denied entrance to the campus by Hofstra representatives because she did not have credentials. Eventually police barricaded the entrance.
==========

http://longislandreport.org/multimedia/green-party-protesters-led-away-by-police-at-hofstra-debate-video/15297

canopfor on October 16, 2012 at 8:49 PM

I claim the first post tonight’s debate topic in honor of gummeandpokeme; may his Pampers Cruisers fit snugly and his mother allow him to stay up late for our entertainment.

onetrickpony on October 16, 2012 at 8:39 PM

When all is said and done, HA needs to give tribute to Gumby’s mom. We only have to put up with his/her/its antics online. She has this idiot, fruit of her loins, living in her basement.

Happy Nomad on October 16, 2012 at 8:50 PM

*hic* GO MIIIIITTTTTTTTTT!!!!! *hic* just kiddin about the *hics*….but….not for long! :)

sicoit on October 16, 2012 at 8:50 PM

“No longer will the fool be considered wise …”
Isaiah

pambi on October 16, 2012 at 8:50 PM

ManlyRash on October 16, 2012 at 8:48 PM

I am certain we will see some blatant and obvious attacks on Romney this evening, but I am also certain that Mitt knows what to do under pressure. It’s his element.

Corporal Tunnel on October 16, 2012 at 8:50 PM

So how many “undecided” voters are in New York?

Zaggs on October 16, 2012 at 8:50 PM

Can someone recommend the best online debate link without a lot of tweets and BS on the side?

celt on October 16, 2012 at 8:48 PM

http://www.c-span.org/debates/

No interruptions. No commentary.

Cody1991 on October 16, 2012 at 8:50 PM

10 Minutes

c-span is rock solid.

Tim_CA on October 16, 2012 at 8:50 PM

Call me an undecided. I can’t decide whether to put carmel popcorn or cheese popcorn in the microwave.

CJ on October 16, 2012 at 8:50 PM

Stuff a couple candy bars in your pocket, Mitt, in case Crowley goes off script.

msupertas on October 16, 2012 at 8:50 PM

May all lies be exposed. May all that’s hidden come to light. May all eyes, both human and electronic, be blind to all votes not honestly cast.

parteagirl on October 16, 2012 at 8:50 PM

Prayers were said.

The wine has been opened.

Now, nail the bastard, Mitt. Seal the deal.

Cody1991 on October 16, 2012 at 8:42 PM

Amen!

ccrosby on October 16, 2012 at 8:50 PM

Obama’s gonna hog this earthquake in Maine thing, so Romney should mention it first.

Romney gets the first question tonight.

matthew8787 on October 16, 2012 at 8:51 PM

I agree. I don’t trust Crowley AT ALL!

gophergirl on October 16, 2012 at 8:44 PM

Agree…

idesign on October 16, 2012 at 8:51 PM

Ed Henry: 0bama had steak and potatoes for dinner with Moochelle.

Brat on October 16, 2012 at 8:51 PM

For Obama’s last meal, he requested steak and potatoes.

Norky on October 16, 2012 at 8:51 PM

Holy Cow!

newtopia on October 16, 2012 at 8:51 PM

I think the whole debate is gonna pretty much boil down to the first mention of “47 percent” and Mitt’s response. That brief exchange is gonna determine the outcome of the debate, and maybe even the whole election!

tkyang99 on October 16, 2012 at 8:51 PM

Yeah, C-SPAN is the best

22044 on October 16, 2012 at 8:51 PM

Gracious Father, please protect and guide Mitt Romney as he continues to lay out his vision for restoring and making America great again.

22044 on October 16, 2012 at 8:40 PM

Amen and amen!

I’d pray to the patron saint of debaters if there was one, but I don’t think there is. Catholics have saints for pretty much everything else. St. Jude is always the default saint, being the patron saint of impossible causes.

TxAnn56 on October 16, 2012 at 8:46 PM

I bet there is one. I was surprised back in the 90s when St. Gabriel was designated the patron saint of the Internet. But St. Jude will do just fine. :)

PatriotGal2257 on October 16, 2012 at 8:51 PM

Romney had rotisserie chicken.

Brat on October 16, 2012 at 8:51 PM

Romney will be answering questions from Obama campaign ,
and debate Creepy Crawley as well as Obama ,
while Obama has to ooh and uummm and aaah and lie .
It will turn nasty very fast

burrata on October 16, 2012 at 8:49 PM

I have faith – deep faith that Mitt will be victorious. Doesn’t mean I can’t still get butterflies in my stomach and have to watch through my fingers.

gophergirl on October 16, 2012 at 8:51 PM

*controversy… both the candidates wives are wearing hot pink…

equanimous on October 16, 2012 at 8:51 PM

“Distract” would actually be a break.

He’s been trying to “destroy” it for nearly four years.

predator on October 16, 2012 at 8:49 PM

predator:Exactly,Distraction/Destruction!:)

canopfor on October 16, 2012 at 8:52 PM

After watching Martha Radish, I can expect anything. I will pray that Mitt has an awesome debate and puts this election away.

Philly on October 16, 2012 at 8:49 PM

Hear, hear.

I know Romney can do it. He dealt with Obama well before, he’ll do it again.

My only fear? Crowley will pick the “random audience question” that broaches the 47% remark. I guarantee you it’ll come from the audience and not Obama. Romney will be hard-pressed to defend it against Joe or Jane Voter.

KingGold on October 16, 2012 at 8:52 PM

@KatiePavlich Ed Klein just reported on Lou dobbs that there are cables that Hillary requested security to be added in Benghazi before 9/11

Retweeted by Katie Pavlich

Whoa!

flyfisher on October 16, 2012 at 8:52 PM

One candidate just needs to be himself and the other candidate must not be himself in order to win tonight.

Husker_red on October 16, 2012 at 8:52 PM

Prediction:

65 Million Viewers tonight!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

canopfor on October 16, 2012 at 8:52 PM

don’t use ah, uh and er as drinking words, you will be sorry tomorrow.

tarpon on October 16, 2012 at 8:52 PM

BHO and Michelle had New York strip of dog and potatoes as pre game meal…

d1carter on October 16, 2012 at 8:52 PM

Gumby’s new name is Chicken Gumbo

matthew8787 on October 16, 2012 at 8:45 PM

Hey I happen to LIKE Chicken Gumbo

do not do that to me ….. I may not be able to enjoy it again ….

conservative tarheel on October 16, 2012 at 8:52 PM

So now I wonder which is the best way to watch the debate?

The first presidential debate, I watched it live and then came here to check the reaction. I thought it was just edge for Romney – then I saw everyone here calling it a stomping, then I watched it again, and I saw how much more in command Romney was.

The VP debate, I DVRed it, called my mom first to get her reaction, then checked out about a page of comments here, then watched it, then later read more comments. She said she was yelling at the TV screen because of Biden’s smirking and disrespect. I ended up not yelling, but shaking my head at how pathetic it is that this person is VP.

Tonight, I have to briefly go shopping, so I may do chase play on the DVR.

One thing I wonder if MItt shold bring up -

0bama’s judgment in putting a smirking fool one heartbeat from the presidency. I think it’s actually an issue. Romney could do a quick segment in which he compares his VP choice with 0bama’s.

Will Romney go the whole debate without mentioning Biden’s disgraceful demeanor? I wonder.

cane_loader on October 16, 2012 at 8:52 PM

almost gametime folks.

see you after the debate.

ted c on October 16, 2012 at 8:53 PM

I’m going to lurk and peer at my browser window tuned to C-SPAN, so I’ll probably save any comments for later.

Go, Mitt! God be with you.

PatriotGal2257 on October 16, 2012 at 8:53 PM

I need Romney to put this away tonite. All this debate angst is turning me into an alcoholic.

BettyRuth on October 16, 2012 at 8:53 PM

Got back from Seattle just in time..
Lets get this thing rolling..

Electrongod on October 16, 2012 at 8:53 PM

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