Last night, like most grown adults in North America, tuned into the presidential debate to watch, what we thought, would be a beat-down of Tyson v. Holmes proportions. Instead what we got was a Hoosiers style upset, where the favoured team lost, not so much because they were outplayed by a better opponent, but because they UNDERESTIMATED their opponent. Obama’s lethargic, uninspired and ultimately charismatic-less performance could be summed up in ONE word: HUBRIS.
And for those of you who disagree with me that Barack lost the debate, you either watched a COMPLETELY different debate than I did, or you are judging it off grounds that DON’T MATTER. This is an election, and the point is to accumulate the most votes, and in the United States of America, accumulating votes is NOT predicated on being the most honest, statistically correct or factually honest – it’s almost ALL about STYLE over SUBSTANCE – and Barack severely lacked BOTH.
Now I’m NOT saying that Romney’s debate win has got Barack on the ropes and has catapulted Mitt ahead in the polls (yet), but this was a W for the Republican party for ONE simple reason: Tonight should have been the Romney campaign’s DEATH BLOW. If this was Mortal Kombat, Mitt was spinning around dazed and unconscious on his feet while the words FINISH HIM blared on the screen in deep blood red. The blows should have included:
1) The fact that Romney has categorically disclaimed 47% of the country as free-loading douchebags who don’t deserve his time or attention.
2) Mitt’s EXTENSIVE history of cutting jobs during his time at Bain Capital.
3) Mitt’s unwillingness to pay an equal tax percent, even though he makes tens of millions of dollars.
4) The Republicans class wars on homosexuals, women, and immigrants.
5) The fact that OBAMACARE IS ROMNEYCARE.
6) The fact that HE got Osama and is slowly but surely scaling the troops back to end the wars America is in.
And if he stated those points with the passion that we saw he debate and deliver speeches with in 2008, he would have been the CLEAR winner and may have wrapped this election up to the point where he could have phoned in the final month like taking knees at the end of a football game. But instead Obama floundered through the debate, stumbled over his words, allowed Romney to state numerous mistruths RIGHT TO HIS FACE, and even let MITT [of all damn people] take HIM to task over HIS record in office.
Obama prattled on about personal stories about people he met on the road, which worked in 2008, but seemingly had little to NO effect in this debate. The reality is, many people are willing to blame the last four years of economic strife on Bush’s screw-ups, which Dubya rightfully deserves, but now people want to hear about POLICY instead of PERSONAL ALLEGORIES. But ultimately Barack’s DELIVERY is what lost him this debate. The idea that it seemed he would rather have been laid up under his wife on their anniversary, or even playing NBA 2K13 with Kobe Bryant, appears to be the TRUTH of the matter because his head nor his heart were into it. It just FELT like Barack stopped taking Romney seriously. But he needs to remember that Americans WILL elect the interesting idiot over the boring intellectual EVERY time, and you don’t have to go back to Dubya v. Gore to realize that - just start with Reagan in 1980.
In 1980, Reagan and incumbent president Jimmy Carter were head to head in the polls after their primaries, even though the majority of the country was UPSET at how Carter was running the country (sound familiar?) and Reagan [the underdog] ended up WINNING the election because of his OPTIMISM – the same optimism Mitt showed last night. The very same optimism that made Obama win in a landslide in 2008 – and the very same optimism he did NOT have last night. The STUPIDEST thing liberals can do is ASSUME that the rest of the country will see through Mitt and deny him their vote. Although Romney is still behind in popular polls, you may be surprised at how much ground he truly gained.
I realize that this was only one debate, but the fact that Mitt has pulled his campaign out of the gutter, re-energized his base (who had a LOT of concerns about him and his staff) and impressed some anti-intellectual undecided voters, has given him something Obama could have EASILY beat out of him tonight:
This Is Your Conscience