kw: politics, debates
Mitt Romney knew you don't go head-to-head against a sitting President on foreign policy; Barack Obama has carried out foreign policy, and he hasn't. While he was able to claim a little territory by showing those aspects that have failed, and the President didn't have an effective counter-argument to that, the Governor simply performed verbal jiu-jitsu, over and over again, by agreeing with the policy where it has been correct (in his view). Then he steered the discussion to the weakness which has been pointed out by Iran's President Ahmadinejad, that the U.S. national debt would cripple us to the point we could be safely defied. I think it is getting pretty obvious to the American public that we need more tax revenues, and the best way to raise them is to raise the national private-sector payroll. Romney is by far more likely to be able to do that.
The President was on the attack, to the point of rudeness at times. He had to be. He also had to present himself as a successful "leader of the free world". That's what he set out to do, and for the most part, he was able to do it.
The Governor had a dual strategy, to fend off the attacks while making a few of his own, primarily on the economy, and to avoid any gaffe that would slow the momentum he attained in the first two debates. He was able to do that. He wisely avoided another set-to over Libya, knowing that we all know the President lied in the prior debate.
My wife and I listened to the first 20 minutes or so of the ABC commentary. I don't recall who said it, but I agree with the statement I heard that this will be a very close race, and is by no means decided yet. None of the commentators last night mentioned it (strangely), but some of the callers to the morning talk show on WPHT (1210 AM) this morning said that Mr. Romney's closing statement was inspiring and uplifting, setting a tone that Mr. Obama could not match. I couldn't have said it better myself.