Wrap up: The third debate; Update: Insta-polls coming in

posted at 11:02 pm on October 22, 2012 by Allahpundit

The nearly universal consensus on Twitter is that Romney won by holding his own, which is all a challenger needs to do in a foreign-policy debate. After watching him talk about international affairs for 90 minutes, does he seem like a guy you’d trust with the button? If yes, then mission accomplished.

Doesn’t matter who won the battle, says Ron Fournier. What matters is who won the war:

Mitt Romney wins. That’s not to say he won Monday night’s debate or the presidential campaign, but it’s safe to say he won an important chapter: The debate season…

There are ample reasons for both Obama and Romney to feel optimistic about their chances Nov. 6. But through his own steady performances and a spectacular first-debate failure by the incumbent, Romney has cleared an important hurdle: A near-decisive number of Americans believe that he is a viable alternative to Obama, an incumbent saddled with a weak economy and a pessimistic national mood.

Another point made more than once in the national tweet scrum tonight was that it sometimes felt like Romney was the incumbent and Obama the angry, occasionally snide challenger. That’s a byproduct, I’m sure, of Team Mitt rehearsing very carefully to capture the sort of tone that Murphy mentioned above. Romney wanted to show the audience not just that he understands Afghanistan, Syria, and Iran, but that he’s unflappable even in a tense situation. Obama wasn’t facing that test so he could afford to be more aggressive, if only to impress his base. Because he was playing offense, I’ll bet that he wins the insta-polls. But that won’t matter; the bottom line is that Romney’s still on track. Stand by for updates.

Update: To see what I mean by snide, here’s O telling Romney that the 1980s called and asked for their foreign policy back. Which is an old enough gag that I think it actually does date to the 1980s.

Update: No surprise:

Waiting for CNN’s poll and, maybe, some focus group video.

Update: A curious lack of curiosity:

Soledad O’Brien was just interviewing the CNN undecided voter focus group. She asked them (quoting from memory): “How many of you changed your mind based upon tonight’s debate.” A whole bunch of hands went up. But — and this is not a joke — O’Brien refused to ask them who they’d would vote for because voting is a “private matter.”

I’m not making this up.

Update: Hearing on Twitter that CNN’s insta-poll has Obama winning 48/40. O won the insta-poll after the second debate by a nearly identical margin, and yet the Mitt-mentum continued. Meanwhile, for what it’s worth, Mark Halperin calls it a flat tie.

Update: A more significant poll result, maybe:

Update: Say, what happened to the Benghazi tonight?

Update: Another key data point:

Update: George Will celebrates the triumph of anti-interventionists:

Update: Not much of a “win” for O, was it?


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STFU and STFD you sad and pathetic clown.

wargamer6 on October 23, 2012 at 12:19 AM

Your extreme anger says so much about you….

libfreeordie on October 23, 2012 at 12:41 AM

Wargamer, have you ever been banned under the name of DeathToMediaHacks for threatening another commenter?

I didn’t think so.

hawkdriver on October 23, 2012 at 12:45 AM

Let’s face it with the insta-polls–the slimestreamers got caught with their pants down after the first debate bcuz they actually got honest votes so they made sure they stacked the deck with ringers to stuff the vote for Obamuh and Biden in the subsequent debates.

stukinIL4now on October 23, 2012 at 12:45 AM

Who is this gumby and why should I care?

newtopia on October 23, 2012 at 12:36 AM

Exactly

AZfederalist on October 23, 2012 at 12:45 AM

I need to clarify something, particularly something GumbeyIdiot is spewing. The sample in the CNN/ORC poll for the second debate was NOT R+8, it was a three way split D/R/I, 33/33/33. The reason CNN claimed that Republicans were oversampled by eight, is because their pollster assumed that Democrats should outnumber democrats by 8%…

WolvenOne on October 23, 2012 at 12:40 AM

Pretty much the same way Congressional Democrats tell America that Republicans ‘cut’ a program like Medicare.

The Dems come in demanding a 10% increase, the Pubs come in with 3%, and they settle on 6% after negotiation.

Soon as the conference is over, the Dems are saying the Republicans ‘cut’ Medicare.

I call it ‘creative accounting’.

Liam on October 23, 2012 at 12:46 AM

Final Score: Obama Wins (media), Romney Wins (polls)

UNLEASH THE OCTOBER SURPRISE(S)!!!!

I am starting to get burned out on this entire circus. There comes a point where the only thing that matters is the actual voting. I voted already, so wake me up on November 7th with a hot cuppa joe and some good news, thank you.

BTW: To the companies and CEOs who have frozen hiring and/or forecasted DOOM!!! for their companies if Obama wins – can y’all come out on November 7th and (if when Romney wins) and announce that the sun has come out on the economy, the birds are singing, and that you are hiring again? Just to twist the knife of Obama’s loss. That would be sweet, thank you.

Timothy S. Carlson on October 23, 2012 at 12:47 AM

There Goes The Neighborhood on October 23, 2012 at 12:31 AM

Prow up. It’s like a football team chewing clock when ahead.

Arssanguinus on October 23, 2012 at 12:35 AM

I’m not sure what “Prow up” means, but the analogy is about right.

Here’s the thing: Obama screwed up HUGE in Libya, and innocent people died because of it. Then Obama tries to obfuscate and cover up what happened, and lectures the rest of the world on our need to not offend the radical Muslims instead of defending the Constitutional guarantee of free speech.

So Obama certainly should be called out for it, and it’s hard to imagine that Mitt said nothing at all about it.

But that wasn’t Mitt’s strategy. If you’re wondering why Romney didn’t win this debate in a big way, it’s because he wasn’t trying to. And that’s exactly why many will credit Obama with the win, because it wasn’t really decisive.

There Goes The Neighborhood on October 23, 2012 at 12:47 AM

Why are Barackabama and The Mooch always alone on the stage? Do they not have friends they want to be seen with?

SouthernGent on October 23, 2012 at 12:47 AM

I bet Obama has no clue how to shoot a weapon of any kind.

Schadenfreude on October 23, 2012 at 12:35 AM

SEALs must’ve chuckled when he said, “I took the shot” that got bin Laden. Yeah, right, buddy.

Christien on October 23, 2012 at 12:48 AM

“Viewers of the debate agree that Obama came off like an angry jackass.

bluegill on October 23, 2012 at 12:37 AM”

According to what?

gumbyandpokey on October 23, 2012 at 12:49 AM

Why are Barackabama and The Mooch always alone on the stage? Do they not have friends they want to be seen with?

SouthernGent on October 23, 2012 at 12:47 AM

Yes, but they wouldn’t let them out of jail just to go to a debate.

bandutski on October 23, 2012 at 12:49 AM

arnold ziffel on October 23, 2012 at 12:42 AM

LOL! I think it is to late in the evening for any attempt of a record breaking thread, but congratulations on your bait preference.

Cindy Munford on October 23, 2012 at 12:49 AM

so in the final analysis it comes down to whether the people are happy with a reduced country or not.

those of us who follow this know the future…not pretty fiscally or economically. A poorer country beset with problems resulting from insane energy policies based on re-leveling of the world to atone for the capitalist exploitation of the earth/people…and medicine, an a monster debt that has to be financed.

versus the people scared of job security, pension security, etc. willing to have barry backstop everyone so at least they can eat and have healhcare and decent housing…at the expense of those very same capitalists

now we’ll see.

r keller on October 23, 2012 at 12:50 AM

I bet Obama has no clue how to shoot a weapon of any kind.

Schadenfreude on October 23, 2012 at 12:35 AM

Peas.

He’s good at shooting them.

At strawmen made of dried arugula.

profitsbeard on October 23, 2012 at 12:50 AM

LevinFan on October 23, 2012 at 12:27 AM

When you diverge on an issue with voters you’re trying to court such as with the auto bailout, you just say what you would have done differently and move on, which Romney did. Taking it a step further and reminding them of the price tag of the stupid move that they love so much is counterproductive to the larger goal of throwing Obama’s ass out.

The Count on October 23, 2012 at 12:50 AM

“The question is not a game of Battleship,” Obama said, in one of his more memorable nights of the line.

Looks like Rick Klein took full advantage of the open bar on reporters row.

katy on October 23, 2012 at 12:50 AM

hawkdriver on October 23, 2012 at 12:38 AM

I remember you telling me about the meetings you had for your mission and I am sure you were a heck of a lot closer than any force available in Libya.

Cindy Munford on October 23, 2012 at 12:41 AM

Yeah. A little different. We were chasing them for weeks.

But you’re right in the sense that even after we’d received almost real time intel for the last attempt, I had over three hours to plan a mission only 40 minutes away. And we still lost the primaries because they preferred to just kill them rather than give them up. People really do expect Hollywood outcomes and it just doesn’t always work out that way.

hawkdriver on October 23, 2012 at 12:51 AM

As I’ve said, Romney will probably win, but if there was any doubt that the conservative movement was fueled entire by anti-Obama hate Hot Air’s comment section in the month of October proves otherwise.

libfreeordie on October 23, 2012 at 12:18 AM

Your shabby writing, as an Ivy League professor, aside, I hate Obama. I hate his Utopian leftism. It has nothing to do with hue, contrary to what you and Matthews claim.

Sue me.

Schadenfreude on October 23, 2012 at 12:39 AM

Just a reminder; back in 2003 the liberals declared that it was perfectly alright to HATE your political opponents: How Hatred Became a Liberal Value

slickwillie2001 on October 23, 2012 at 12:51 AM

Romney missed loads of opportunities tonight. Too Bad. He could have killed Obama on the Israel issue. When Obama bragged about going to Israel during his POTUS CAMPAIGN in 2008, Romney should have looked him in the eye and said, “That was when you were campaigining and had no power to influence anything in our Foreign policy with Israel. When you had that power as President, you have made zero trips to Israel and as a matter of fact, refused to meet with Benjamin Netanyahu when he came to Washington last month. When I’m President, I will go to Israel to meet with our strongest ally in the mideast and when he comes to Washington DC, I will certainly meet with him.

they lie on October 23, 2012 at 12:35 AM

Exactly!!

Cindy and a few others have made some good points about not getting into it over Libya but I don’t see any reason why Romney shouldn’t have attacked obama over Israel.

If Mitt had said what you eloquenty stated above it could’ve been a knockout blow!

LevinFan on October 23, 2012 at 12:52 AM

Really hawk? You’re telling us that in over seven hours there’s “no” possible chance of mobilization in this day and age? Is the military’s hand really this tied that there was no hope for these people? If this is the case, then there is a serious problem with our capabilities imo.

Rovin on October 23, 2012 at 12:35 AM

I think hawkdriver is probably right here. The logistics that go into moving assets into play, especially into an area like that are pretty complex. From what I’ve read we were moving assets into striking distance but we never got to use them.

Now, do I think we could have mobilized some kind of air support, yeah. I think AC130s could might have made a difference, but then again that embassy is very small in a residential area and its likely any attack on the forces outside the embassy were too “danger close” to our people for consideration.

If Obama had actually been a leader, his administration would have placed QRF in the region ready for something like this. Considering the requests from Stevens, the recent attacks and the fact the it was the anniversary of 9/11 it was dereliction of duty not to do so. I can’t believe the media isn’t absolutely crucifying him for this fact. The community organizer failed those brave men and women with his ineptitude.

ShadowsPawn on October 23, 2012 at 12:52 AM

I bet Obama has no clue how to shoot a weapon of any kind.

Schadenfreude on October 23, 2012 at 12:35 AM

She’s got a lot of practice shooting his mouth off.

Archivarix on October 23, 2012 at 12:53 AM

LevinFan on October 23, 2012 at 12:33 AM

I’m sure he weighed all of that. Obama came off looking small and arrogant, which oddly enough he is both.

Cindy Munford on October 23, 2012 at 12:53 AM

‘Nite Bmore

jaime on October 23, 2012 at 12:44 AM

Hi jaime :D This thread was moving way too fast there for a while and I was foolishly trying to have a conversation with a troll. -_- How are you?

cynccook on October 23, 2012 at 12:53 AM

According to what?

gumbyandpokey on October 23, 2012 at 12:49 AM

According to rational adults that watched the debate. Not something that you would really get.

ShadowsPawn on October 23, 2012 at 12:53 AM

So, like all Americans, I’m voting for one of the two major party candidates who most closely aligns with my beliefs. Its a hold your nose situation…
 
I thought many people around here would be holding their nose and pulling the lever for Romney. Instead, there is a partisan glee…
 
libfreeordie on October 23, 2012 at 12:18 AM

 
In the same post. Amazing.

rogerb on October 23, 2012 at 12:53 AM

Your extreme anger says so much about you….

libfreeordie on October 23, 2012 at 12:41 AM

See,this is the mistake the libs always make, in part due to their over projecting…you can despise someone a great deal, and have no respect for them (respect is something that has to be gained, btw) without necessarily hating them, or feeling anger towards them… Personally I have nothing but disdain for Obama, based on his policy stance mainly, and I believe him fo be one of the worst presidents in recent memory…but hate him, neah, that’s reserved to Hollande :)…

jimver on October 23, 2012 at 12:54 AM

I am starting to get burned out on this entire circus. There comes a point where the only thing that matters is the actual voting. I voted already, so wake me up on November 7th with a hot cuppa joe and some good news, thank you.

BTW: To the companies and CEOs who have frozen hiring and/or forecasted DOOM!!! for their companies if Obama wins – can y’all come out on November 7th and (if when Romney wins) and announce that the sun has come out on the economy, the birds are singing, and that you are hiring again? Just to twist the knife of Obama’s loss. That would be sweet, thank you.

Timothy S. Carlson on October 23, 2012 at 12:47 AM

Glad to hear you already voted but there’s still alot more that needs to be done!

Donate, make phone calls, knock on doors, talk to your neighbors and friends, volunteer to drive Republicans to the polls on Election Day.

I understand all this can be tiresome but it’s a small price to pay to save our great country. How badly do you want to defeat obama?

LevinFan on October 23, 2012 at 12:55 AM

If Obama had actually been a leader, his administration would have placed QRF in the region ready for something like this. Considering the requests from Stevens, the recent attacks and the fact the it was the anniversary of 9/11 it was dereliction of duty not to do so. I can’t believe the media isn’t absolutely crucifying him for this fact. The community organizer failed those brave men and women with his ineptitude.

ShadowsPawn on October 23, 2012 at 12:52 AM

Couldn’t be said better.

hawkdriver on October 23, 2012 at 12:55 AM

bluegill on October 23, 2012 at 12:37 AM”

Defensive and beaten. Go see the picture at Drudge. It says all.

Schadenfreude on October 23, 2012 at 12:55 AM

For the bayonets-and-horses aficionados, this just in from WaPo:

WINNERS

* President Obama: Obama controlled the third presidential debate in a way not all that dissimilar from the way Romney controlled the first one. Obama clearly came loaded for bear, attacking Romney from the jump for a lack of clarity when it came to his vision (or lack thereof) on foreign policy. If you are looking for moments — and remember that the media coverage over the next few days will focus on just that — Obama had two with his line about “the 1980s calling” in regards to Romney’s foreign policy and his reference to “horses and bayonets” to call into question his rival’s understanding of the modern military. It’s possible that Obama came off too hot/not presidential in some of his attacks but Democrats will take a little too much heat following Obama’s cold-as-ice performance in the first debate. Obama came across as the more confident and commanding presence — by a lot.

I guess it’s all in your point of view —

AesopFan on October 23, 2012 at 12:55 AM

This was the closest thing to a debate yet, as opposed to performance art, or a borscht-belt Martin & Lewis one-upmanship routine.

Nonetheless, you can’t have a debate with a liar. And while Romney spun a little bit here and there, Obama lied more times than I could count – from predicative vague slurs to quick misstatements, to outright lies than Romney challenged and others, later, fact-check as untrue. Winner? As a debate, Romney won on accuracy and points. On style, Romney presented himself as Presidential, peaceable, and likeable. Obama presented himself as aggressive, determined, self-impressed and slightly cannibalistic. (Is that racist?)

I saw the glint in Obama’s eye when Romney agreed with going into Pakistan to get bin Laden. Now I see he was looking for any opportunity to say, “I’m glad Governor Romney finally agrees with me”. Yet every time Obama said I see Romney agrees with my position, he thinks he’s supporting his own past record. But what he’s really doing is showing where there are no differences between the two, under-cutting his own unique strength as the experienced incumbent.

Obama loses my attention every time he says that Romney is was saying something different from statements he made in the past, trying to cast him as a flip-flopper over quotes (or, more rightly characterized, misquotes) that no one has heard or can remember. Obama is also misrepresenting his own record as in many small ways, but mentioning them broadly as support for his sweeping general statements.

He said “that our military’s not asking for” what, three of four times? How many debates has Obama used this line in previous debates? Has he nothing left to say?

Obama looked mildly surly to begin with. He looks angry and argumentative at the end. And Romney is doing his tear-down of Obama slower and more gently. To my eye Romney looks authoritative, but Obama looks churlish.

How many times did Obama say “wrong and reckless”? It’s up to the voters to define wrong and reckless. Look at the past, and ask yourself: is that wrong? And reckless? Or look to the future and ask will Romney be “wrong and reckless”? That’s the foreign policy question. And it’s the economy question.

Romney won handily from this conservative’s perspective. Others will see what they want to see.

flicker on October 23, 2012 at 12:55 AM

AesopFan on October 23, 2012 at 12:55 AM

Well if the Washington Post said Obama won, it must be the case…

strictnein on October 23, 2012 at 12:56 AM

When you diverge on an issue with voters you’re trying to court such as with the auto bailout, you just say what you would have done differently and move on, which Romney did. Taking it a step further and reminding them of the price tag of the stupid move that they love so much is counterproductive to the larger goal of throwing Obama’s ass out.

The Count on October 23, 2012 at 12:50 AM

You may have a point there.

Personally if it was me, if I was one of the union workers in OH helped by the bailout I’d be embarrassed. I would understand it’s not fair to be bailed out by the rest of the nation.

I can’t stand those with their hands out with no shame and asking fo more.

LevinFan on October 23, 2012 at 12:58 AM

I thought many people around here would be holding their nose and pulling the lever for Romney. Instead, there is a partisan glee…

libfreeordie on October 23, 2012 at 12:18 AM

It’s both. Multitasking is easy for a rightie.

The Schadenfreude against the Europeans, the media and hacks bigger than you, much more unreasonable, would be incredible…for a few hours. Then will watch Romney.

Schadenfreude on October 23, 2012 at 12:58 AM

ShadowsPawn on October 23, 2012 at 12:52 AM

It’s far worse than Watergate and also a Pulitzer for the taking. Evidently, detailing what an epic failure Obama and Hillary wrought is too much for the Democrat media to handle.

Christien on October 23, 2012 at 12:59 AM

I need to clarify something, particularly something GumbeyIdiot is spewing. The sample in the CNN/ORC poll for the second debate was NOT R+8, it was a three way split D/R/I, 33/33/33. The reason CNN claimed that Republicans were oversampled by eight, is because their pollster assumed that Democrats should outnumber democrats by 8%…

WolvenOne on October 23, 2012 at 12:40 AM

From a certain perspective, that was a very fair claim by CNN.

What they claimed was that the 33/33/33 split was about 8 points more R than what they normally see among All Adults polling. Which makes perfect sense… people who lean GOP are more likely to actually be registered to vote than those who lean Democrat.

Further, that split tells me we are likely to see turnout near parity in November. One of the best ways to determine if someone is actually a Likely Voter is not if they say they are likely to vote. What is a far better indicator is if they do stuff that demonstrates an interest in the election. Like having a yard sign. Like attending a rally. Like watching a debate. If Dems can’t maintain their advantage in viewership, it is likely they can’t maintain their advantage at the polls.

JohnGalt23 on October 23, 2012 at 1:00 AM

BTW, interesting figure on that CBS poll. Before the debate a full 75% of the respondents stated that they believed Obama to be better for foreign policy.

This alone explains their absurd findings. In no national poll does Obama enjoy THAT sort of advantage on foreign policy. So it’s clear the CBS did not have a representative sample of the population to start with.

WolvenOne on October 23, 2012 at 1:01 AM

I thought many people around here would be holding their nose and pulling the lever for Romney. Instead, there is a partisan glee…

libfreeordie on October 23, 2012 at 12:18 AM

I’ve always liked Mitt. He’s a genuine, good guy and a leader. Don’t agree with him on everything, but I think he will be a great POTUS.

ShadowsPawn on October 23, 2012 at 1:01 AM

Why are Barackabama and The Mooch always alone on the stage? Do they not have friends they want to be seen with?

SouthernGent on October 23, 2012 at 12:47 AM

Of course they do. I’m sure they have the very best friends that money and power can buy.

trigon on October 23, 2012 at 1:01 AM

“Viewers of the debate agree that Obama came off like an angry jackass.

bluegill on October 23, 2012 at 12:37 AM”

According to what?

gumbyandpokey on October 23, 2012 at 12:49 AM

According to a poll that is not out yet and will not be published until tomorrow evening ..all I can tellyouis watchhat poll….it will be…for lack of a better word, atomic :)

jimver on October 23, 2012 at 1:02 AM

JohnGalt23 on October 23, 2012 at 1:00 AM

Thats a fair point.

WolvenOne on October 23, 2012 at 1:02 AM

How many times did Obama say “wrong and reckless”?

flicker on October 23, 2012 at 12:55 AM

It’s just cheap alliteration, based on consonance Romney, Ryan, wrong, reckless

You’re getting very sleepy….

Christien on October 23, 2012 at 1:03 AM

D.C. caught off guard by Obama sequester vow

LOL What a nitwit.

cynccook on October 23, 2012 at 1:03 AM

AesopFan on October 23, 2012 at 12:55 AM

Well if the Washington Post said Obama won, it must be the case…

strictnein on October 23, 2012 at 12:56 AM

Written by Chris Cillizza, Angrea Mitchell’s pool-boy. Nuff’ said.

slickwillie2001 on October 23, 2012 at 1:04 AM

JohnGalt23 on October 23, 2012 at 1:00 AM

I caught a little bit of Rush this afternoon and he said that early on the polling folks go big Democrat because they want their guy to appear to be winning and add to his momentum but as we get closer to the actual election, they have to have parity in the polls so that they maintain their reputations as a legitimate institutions and be hired again next time.

Cindy Munford on October 23, 2012 at 1:04 AM

AesopFan on October 23, 2012 at 12:55 AM

news: lefty wapo blogger thinks barry won…and snarks about saint louis cardinals.

r keller on October 23, 2012 at 1:06 AM

I guess it’s all in your point of view —

AesopFan on October 23, 2012 at 12:55 AM

Yeah. Not everyone was down with the hilarity of that comment…

cynccook on October 23, 2012 at 1:06 AM

BTW, interesting figure on that CBS poll. Before the debate a full 75% of the respondents stated that they believed Obama to be better for foreign policy.

This alone explains their absurd findings. In no national poll does Obama enjoy THAT sort of advantage on foreign policy. So it’s clear the CBS did not have a representative sample of the population to start with.

WolvenOne on October 23, 2012 at 1:01 AM

There’s also another way to do the math.

If the sample is 40%D and 30%R, it’s a 10-percentage point increase.

But, if you compare the two figures, the Democrats enjoy a straight-up 33 percent advantage in the calculation over Republicans.

We could call it sophistry, or just plain old math. Depends on how you look at it.

Liam on October 23, 2012 at 1:07 AM

It’s a good thing our entire foreign policy is limited to the Mid East, I don’t know what Obama would do if he had to pay attention to anything else.

Cindy Munford on October 23, 2012 at 1:07 AM

What does this mean for the children?

GW_SS-Delta on October 23, 2012 at 1:09 AM

cynccook on October 23, 2012 at 12:53 AM

Hi cynccook

I’ve been in and out this evening. I have to jump out for a few minutes, but I’ll be back for a little while. If you have to leave before I get back, it was good to see you here again.

jaime on October 23, 2012 at 1:09 AM

Hmmm…

# The Moderator: Bob Schieffer did a fine, professional job as moderator. He asked serious questions designed to elicit substantive responses, and then he got out of the way and let the candidates talk.

# Substance: Both candidates were fine on substance. This, however, was probably more important to Romney. As the challenger, and the man with no national foreign policy experience, it was important for him to appear well-informed in this area. He did that, and the president’s rather childish jibes about bayonets and horses did nothing to undermine the impression.

# Tactics: The president used almost every opportunity he had to speak to launch some kind of attack on Romney. This seems like the behavior of a candidate who knows he is behind and is reaching, even straining, to achieve some kind of transformation of the race. I don’t think it worked. Romney, on the other hand, seemed determined not to be goaded into saying anything counterproductive. He succeeded in this, and it will be helpful to his campaign.

Style I: Romney’s default facial expression when not speaking was a mild smile. In contrast, the president’s face invariably reverted to an expression that was rather unpleasant and seemed to communicate disdain for his opponent. I suppose this might excite his liberal followers, who think that there is no end to the political benefits of appearing as combative as possible, but I don’t think it will help the president with undecided voters. The president, like his liberal fan base, seems to think he occupies a position of strength by projecting visible contempt for Romney. But for that to be advantageous, it would have to be the case that a majority of voters already agree that Romney is contemptible. The evidence, however, does not support that view.

Style II: We should face the fact that the evidence of the three debates suggests — I would really rather say demonstrates — the Governor Romney is a better extemporaneous speaker than the president. I admit freely that this is not the most important thing in the world for a president. Fine presidents — like Eisenhower — were not great extemporaneous speakers. But it is worth mentioning if only because we have been bombarded now for years with opinions about how smart the president is, and how much more fluidly he expresses himself than, say, George W. Bush. Barack Obama does express himself more fluidly than Bush, but, in truth, that is not a very high bar to jump. We don’t hear as much about how smart Obama is anymore because Romney is clearly his equal in intelligence. Romney is smoother and more confident in his delivery. Obama’s delivery invariably involves pauses, as well as drawn out “aaaand”s, the purpose of which seems to be to give the president time to think about what he is saying. If you came to the debate not knowing who was who, you would think that Romney was the president, and that Obama was the challenger who had dutifully and diligently memorized his briefly books and who could spout their contents without errors, but also without sounding like he had fully internalized them. Again, I am speaking here of a stylistic point. I am not saying that the president is not well informed. Both candidates are well informed, but Romney sounds more well-informed.

# Style III: The president or his speechwriters came up with what they thought was a clever bit of alliteration: Romney’s plans are “wrong and reckless.” The president was so taken by this line that he used it three or four times. This reminded me of Al Gore’s constant reiteration, in one of the 2000 debates, of the expression “risky tax scheme.” These rhetorical gimmicks are, well, gimmicks and are never as effective as the people using them think they will be.

# Outcome: Romney made no mistakes and appeared presidential. Mission accomplished.

http://www.catholicvote.org/discuss/index.php?p=37892

workingclass artist on October 23, 2012 at 1:09 AM

I guess it’s all in your point of view —

AesopFan on October 23, 2012 at 12:55 AM

Huh? WaPo must still be mad at Ronald Reagan for being right. As I remember the Berlin Wall fell at the end of the 1980s.

As for the horses and bayonets, where’s WaPo been the last ten or eleven years? The modern military does what it needs to do to get the job done.

It was the news the world breathlessly waited for immediately after the 9/11 terror attacks: a report of the first American troops on the ground in Afghanistan.

All at once the world’s attention focused on an iconic photo of those Special Operations Forces doing something no American military had done in nearly a century: They rode horses into combat.

Their secret mission: secure northern Afghanistan by advising the warring tribal factions that formed the Northern Alliance. During the 2011 Veterans Day Parade on November 11, a new monument to these men — and to all Americans in uniform — made its way down New York City’s famed Fifth Avenue on the way to its final home, a stone’s throw from Ground Zero.

Horse Soldiers: The Extraordinary Story of a Band of US Soldiers Who Rode to Victory in Afghanistan

Steyn on bayonets?

Cold Steel

As I wrote in the piece above, it’s a useful form of psychological warfare. Being willing to run a chap through with cold steel tells the enemy something about you in a way that the more anonymously lethal unmanned drone doesn’t.

INC on October 23, 2012 at 1:11 AM

Hi cynccook

I’ve been in and out this evening. I have to jump out for a few minutes, but I’ll be back for a little while. If you have to leave before I get back, it was good to see you here again.

jaime on October 23, 2012 at 1:09 AM

Waaay past my bedtime already, but I’ll see you again soon. It’s going to be a fun two weeks….. ;)

cynccook on October 23, 2012 at 1:11 AM

Who is this gumby and why should I care?

newtopia on October 23, 2012 at 12:36 AM

Because apparently this idiot is our President.

John the Libertarian on October 23, 2012 at 1:12 AM

Romney laid back tonight. It was strategy to have moderate mitt return. Not sure why he didn’t hammer Obama on the libya thing. Guess they felt they didn’t need to score those points.

rubberneck on October 23, 2012 at 1:12 AM

I had an 0bama dem black voter neighbor over for the debate and she was turned off by the glare…

OmahaConservative on October 23, 2012 at 1:13 AM

It’s both. Multitasking is easy for a rightie.

The Schadenfreude against the Europeans, the media and hacks bigger than you, much more unreasonable, would be incredible…for a few hours. Then will watch Romney.

Schadenfreude on October 23, 2012 at 12:58 AM

Cheers.

INC on October 23, 2012 at 1:13 AM

libfreeordie on October 23, 2012 at 12:18 AM

Cry me a river, princess.

Solaratov on October 23, 2012 at 1:14 AM

What you fail/refuse to understand is that any American voting for one of the two parties is voting for things that they fundamentally don’t agree with or may find reprehensible.

 
Thanks. That sort of deep insight is why I come to HA.
 
Here’s some, too. Most adults don’t post about being vehemently against particular things (Drones! Diamonds! Child murderers!) and then hypocritically have to publicly embrace/support them because of a couple of superficial demographic-driven goals.
 
Pointing it out isn’t anything personal. I’ve told you as much many times, and I even offered to help the other night before you abandoned the (Racism!) Lanceman thread you referenced earlier. I’m not attacking you any more than I’m attacking urban elitist or bayam. You’re my fellow countrymen. I love you and would die defending you.
 
I am, however, criticizing the ideology that pretzels you into those hypocrisies.
 

Even you rogerb are throwing up weak sauce like this Batman joke that you wrote

 
Option 1)
What joke? I was pointing out your position for trivial things like movies vs. serious things like multiple child murders via your personal and intimately chosen proxy.
 
Option 2)
The weak sauce that you wrote a 300 word response to. See “I’m criticizing the ideology that forces you into that hypocrisy” above.
 

Its all just gotten sort of sad around here, hence my rapidly decreasing participation.
 
libfreeordie on October 23, 2012 at 12:18 AM

 
I’m a dad. I’m going to go out on a limb here and suggest it’s because playtime is less fun when you’re losing.

rogerb on October 23, 2012 at 1:15 AM

Military Horses & Mules in Afghanistan

This swashbuckling story is an exciting and inspiring tale, but has deeper implications for warfare in the 21st Century: be ready for anything, including a mix of the most modern technology with methods and means long considered obsolete, like pack mules.

INC on October 23, 2012 at 1:15 AM

My take is Romney accomplished what needed to be done. Of course Obama has more info then Romney on FP, but Romney showed he can do it. Second, did this debate Romneys momentum, the answer is no, on the flash polls on CNN or PPP Romney gains the indies.

Third, Romney was way more presidential, and his closing was pure American, as Obama’s was teachers and get rich to pay more, more divide.

Romney wins this thing going away

Conservative4ev on October 23, 2012 at 1:15 AM

Top 10 things liberals are most likely to blame when Obama loses (ranked from most to least likely)

10. Diebold machines
9. Fox News
8. Rush Limbaugh
7. Sean Hannity
6. Diebold machines
5. The “fake” polls
4. Chris Matthews
3. Joe Biden
2. Obama
1. Failure of liberal policies

tkyang99 on October 23, 2012 at 1:17 AM

cynccook on October 23, 2012 at 1:06 AM

i read the politico piece. some of the comments were pretty funny…like Romney should have shot back to barry…did some Army corpse-man tell you that/

what this shows is the inside of the lib/left mind….they Must Ridicule…part of the Rules. bring the Man down…even when you are the Man (i.e. none to bright)

r keller on October 23, 2012 at 1:17 AM

I’m still trying to figure out what kind of mind can say we have more allies in the world now that when he took office.

Which are these? England? Poland? No. Chavez’s Venezuela? Cuba? Libya? Maybe Putin’s Russia? An Iran thirsting for freedom?

Must be talking about the Maldives.

flicker on October 23, 2012 at 1:17 AM

Night everyone. Have fun.

rogerb on October 23, 2012 at 1:17 AM

We have put together Air Assaults in a very short period of time. But you have to be close enough to stage it. The security needed to be provided when it was asked for. Or those folks pulled out. Neither was done.

hawkdriver on October 23, 2012 at 12:38 AM

..surprised to learn that the combat range of a Blackhawk is only a little over 350 miles, Hawk. Never had a reason to research it until tonight. But that’s not a great distance and I’ll wager that it does not leave you guys a lot of loiter time on the business end of the mission, eh?

The War Planner on October 23, 2012 at 1:18 AM

Night everyone. Have fun.

rogerb on October 23, 2012 at 1:17 AM

..this comment will be saved for later!

:-D

The War Planner on October 23, 2012 at 1:19 AM

Let’s face it with the insta-polls–the slimestreamers got caught with their pants down after the first debate bcuz they actually got honest votes so they made sure they stacked the deck with ringers to stuff the vote for Obamuh and Biden in the subsequent debates.

stukinIL4now on October 23, 2012 at 12:45 AM

Pretty old by now Soviet Union BS, only rabid communist union members were selected and allowed on TV and radio to “represent the working man”. Extra pay and some perks were the offering, as well as move up the communist party ladder in due time.

These “independent” panels are so much BS. Only in rabid liberal mind do they represent anything at all. Because only a complete, utter idiot can have no decision who to vote for after these 4 years.

riddick on October 23, 2012 at 1:19 AM

Why are Barackabama and The Mooch always alone on the stage? Do they not have friends they want to be seen with?

SouthernGent on October 23, 2012 at 12:47 AM

Bad optics to have Jay-Z, Beyonce, Kanye and Kim up there with him.

cptacek on October 23, 2012 at 1:20 AM

Top 10 things liberals are most likely to blame when Obama loses (ranked from most to least likely)

10. Diebold machines
9. Fox News
8. Rush Limbaugh
7. Sean Hannity
6. Diebold machines
5. The “fake” polls
4. Chris Matthews
3. Joe Biden
2. Obama
1. Failure of liberal policies

tkyang99 on October 23, 2012 at 1:17 AM

No. Actually, it will be America’s inherent and closet ‘racism’ that is blamed.

Allegedly, Tingles tonight already is trying to jump-start that tired meme after tonight’s debate. I don’t know how he might have gone there as alleged, but I can foresee it coming.

Liam on October 23, 2012 at 1:20 AM

@ppppolls

Mitt Romney now leads Barack Obama 49-47 based on the last 3 nights of our national tracking, all pre-debate though: PDF http://t.co/n57wuL3j

Flora Duh on October 23, 2012 at 1:22 AM

actually, the more i think about the horses remark, the more i think it was probably rehearsed

this is a distraction from the issue at hand…namely going well below the force structure requested by the pentagon…so he doesn’t have to justify his ‘strategy’ just distracts via the snark.

r keller on October 23, 2012 at 1:23 AM

Althouse:

“9:52: Here’s my bottom line: By adopting a strategy of only modestly challenging Obama and mostly seeming the same as Obama on foreign policy, Romney neutralized foreign policy as an issue and kept the election focus on the economy. He even refocused the discussion on the economy whenever he could over the course of the evening. The election is about the economy, and nothing either candidate said tonight will change that. The only way Obama really could have won is if Romney had tumbled into some kind of exploitable gaffe. That didn’t happen.”

http://althouse.blogspot.com/2012/10/live-blogging-big-last-debate.html

workingclass artist on October 23, 2012 at 1:23 AM

The War Planner on October 23, 2012 at 1:18 AM

You wouldn’t even get 350 miles without external tanks or Robbies.

hawkdriver on October 23, 2012 at 1:24 AM

According to a poll that is not out yet and will not be published until tomorrow evening ..all I can tellyouis watchhat poll….it will be…for lack of a better word, atomic :)

jimver on October 23, 2012 at 1:02 AM

Take it easy on the kid there, he just might start crying and his mommy may accuse us right wingers of child abuse. Too bad she raised an idiot.

riddick on October 23, 2012 at 1:24 AM

I understand all this can be tiresome but it’s a small price to pay to save our great country. How badly do you want to defeat obama?

LevinFan on October 23, 2012 at 12:55 AM

Oh, I want him gone. Gone today, gone tomorrow, gone yesterday.

I post on my blog – I post on Facebook (yeah, a lot of my friends are sick of my political rants) – I talk to friends and family.

That’s all I can do. Hard to go door-to-door / take someone to the polls / etc. when you are living on an island.

Unfortunately, I’ve suffered 4 strokes and on SSDI. I can’t afford to live in the US (thank you, Mr. President!), so I’m in the Philippines now, where the cost of medical care and daily living in general is much, much cheaper.

BTW: President Obama? Increasing the bureaucracy required to provide healthcare isn’t going to reduce costs! And – Gov. Romney? If you want to reduce the costs of medical services, try TORT REFORM. The costs will go down when hospitals / clinics / doctors aren’t paying half of their earnings for insurance. When I was getting rehab in the US, my physical therapists complained of three things – the cost of insurance (for them), the amount of paperwork they had to complete for Medicare, and the slow responses / slow payments / red tape they got from the Medicare bureaucracy. So – throw reform of Medicare in there, too. Streamline it, reduce the bureaucracy, and also cull the rolls of those who should not be on it in the first place.

In the Philippines, I pay $10 (out of pocket) to see a physician. $20 for an ultrasound. $100 for a catscan. Hernia surgery (which I need to get soon) will cost me $500-$750. My meds are 1/2 the price than in the States – and yes, brand name meds, not generics.

Medicare isn’t provided here, so I don’t have to pay the $100/mo that I would have to pay in the States. I am off the hook for paying for ObamaCare, also – if it survives long enough to start hitting paychecks.

I hated to leave the States, but you gotta do what you gotta do.

Oy! Sorry for the rant. What were we talking about?

Timothy S. Carlson on October 23, 2012 at 1:25 AM

@ppppolls

Mitt Romney now leads Barack Obama 49-47 based on the last 3 nights of our national tracking, all pre-debate though: PDF http://t.co/n57wuL3j

D+6 sample too. Wow.

Atomic bomb?

tkyang99 on October 23, 2012 at 1:25 AM

Flora Duh on October 23, 2012 at 1:22 AM

even with a D+6 sample

r keller on October 23, 2012 at 1:26 AM

Top 10 things liberals are most likely to blame when Obama loses (ranked from most to least likely)

10. Diebold machines
9. Fox News
8. Rush Limbaugh
7. Sean Hannity
6. Diebold machines
5. The “fake” polls
4. Chris Matthews
3. Joe Biden
2. Obama
1. Failure of liberal policies

tkyang99 on October 23, 2012 at 1:17 AM

Money!!!! Evil corporate money funneled by the Koch Bros. conspiracy thanks to that blasted Citizens United ruling!

Gingotts on October 23, 2012 at 1:27 AM

workingclass artist on October 23, 2012 at 1:09 AM

I like the way you think. I still can’t read an article about heuristics without remembering Gore’s “fffffuzzy logggic”.

And I still think Obama looked intensely comtemplative as he listened to Romney’s points — contemplating chomping his nose off.

flicker on October 23, 2012 at 1:27 AM

Axel-grease on CNN couldn’t even spin it as a win for Zero. That’s bad. Very bad. I imagine he was utterly freaking out about all the shit he’s gonna have to clean up the next 2 weeks — bayonets, sequestration, ships that go under water…Total disaster for Zero. As usual, Zero might squeak a win in these insta-polls, but he’ll lose the narrative for the next week.

Rational Thought on October 22, 2012 at 11:29 PM

.
Well, coming late to the party because the Hot Air Javascript is FUBAR again but this is the fourth commenter I’ve seen talking about Axelrod on CNN (which I unfortunately did not see) being, shall we say, down in the dumps.

Axelrod was tied into real time focus groups, social media and other data sources covering the debate.

If he was down in the dumps AFTER the debate, he saw a lot of things during the debate he knew he could not fix by spinning the media.

I said it on a thread earlier today – I believe Ohio is effectively at 52% Romney & 48% SCOAMF with the trends running to Romney. Early Ohio voting returns are showing parity between the two candidates – which translates into a potential wave effect for Romney.

It may be that Axelrod watched all of his data sources and came away knowing they are going to lose on November 6th.

It would explain his demeanor and lack of effort to spin things.

Oh, if it turns into a landslide against Obama, we won’t have to worry about him running again in 2016. He will have done so much damage to the Democrats, he will only be able to get a Fluke-size crowd to listen to him in the future.

:)

PolAgnostic on October 23, 2012 at 1:28 AM

The debate thread is within 6 of 4000. :)

thatsafactjack on October 23, 2012 at 1:28 AM

actually, the more i think about the horses remark, the more i think it was probably rehearsed

this is a distraction from the issue at hand…namely going well below the force structure requested by the pentagon…so he doesn’t have to justify his ‘strategy’ just distracts via the snark.

r keller on October 23, 2012 at 1:23 AM

Problem is whoever was the “rehearsal” expert has no idea about military action in the Afghani mountains where in many places there is only a horse trail to transport drugs and food. I guess they missed that Bond movie altogether as well, what with all their Hollywood connections and all. Not only do mujaheddin travel by horses, we do as well. Will Hollywood hacks now defend this obviously bad joke by Hussein?

riddick on October 23, 2012 at 1:29 AM

Men apparently make better moderators than women ….

Sherman1864 on October 23, 2012 at 1:31 AM

PolAgnostic on October 23, 2012 at 1:28 AM

I believe that’s true, too. I think that the progressives have damaged the Democrat brand itself. I think they may spend the next two weeks trying to energize the core base in order to try and mitigate as much of the damage as they can by trying to keep the margin of victory for Romney as narrow as they can. IF he wins in a landslide, after the 2010 ‘shellacking’ its a mandate against the brand itself… not just Obama and it will destroy them down ticket as well as the chances for 2016.

thatsafactjack on October 23, 2012 at 1:31 AM

Night folks, sweet dreams!

Cindy Munford on October 23, 2012 at 1:31 AM

Cindy Munford on October 23, 2012 at 1:31 AM

Goodnight, Cindy! Sleep well!

thatsafactjack on October 23, 2012 at 1:33 AM

Timothy S. Carlson on October 23, 2012 at 1:25 AM

As you now live in the Philippines, how are you still allowed to vote in the US?

You’re a US citizen, former combat veteran? What kind of residency do you have in the Philipppines?

LevinFan on October 23, 2012 at 1:33 AM

Allons, enfants, let’s make this 4,000 :)..

jimver on October 23, 2012 at 1:33 AM

Cheers.

INC on October 23, 2012 at 1:13 AM

:)

Schadenfreude on October 23, 2012 at 1:33 AM

Schadenfreude on October 23, 2012 at 1:33 AM

I went back and watched Charles Krauthammer again and emailed the video to several colleagues and friends. :)

thatsafactjack on October 23, 2012 at 1:35 AM

Two Weeks

Schadenfreude on October 23, 2012 at 1:36 AM

You wouldn’t even get 350 miles without external tanks or Robbies.

hawkdriver on October 23, 2012 at 1:24 AM

..which buttresses your assertion about how cut off the consulate was. In the Bret Baer special, they mentioned calling in an AC-130 but the closest one was where? Eight hours away?

Anything else in the inventory that could have done the deed?

The War Planner on October 23, 2012 at 1:36 AM

thatsafactjack on October 23, 2012 at 1:35 AM

He knows what he speaks of.

Schadenfreude on October 23, 2012 at 1:37 AM

Fix Binders……..Charge !

Sandybourne on October 23, 2012 at 1:37 AM

Big oversampling of women in that new PPP national poll:
Woman 55%
Man 45%

And 41% Dem / 35% Repub.

And Obama is still down 2%, 49% R / 47% O

strictnein on October 23, 2012 at 1:37 AM

Men apparently make better moderators than women ….

Sherman1864 on October 23, 2012 at 1:31 AM

Heh, more like someone with some objectivity makes a better moderator than a liberal hack with an obvious agenda.

I saw that even Levin said Scheiffer was excellent, but I wouldn’t go that far.

I thought Scheiffer challenging Romney on China by asking a follow himself: “wouldn’t that start a trade war?” was garbage.

How many times did he challenge maobama on anything?

BTW Romney answered that question very well.

LevinFan on October 23, 2012 at 1:37 AM

Schadenfreude on October 23, 2012 at 1:36 AM

Its so close… and I’ve been waiting so long. I can’t wait. I’ll be like a little girl on Christmas morning, only instead of rushing to open presents, I’ll be going to go vote and likely be there before the polling place is even open!

thatsafactjack on October 23, 2012 at 1:38 AM

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