Post-Debate Mortem

Ken AshfordElection 2012Leave a Comment

Well, despite my enthusiasm last night, Romney did manage to get a bit more energized, so it didn't turn out to be the trouncing that it appeared half way through.  Oh, Obama won.  Is say so.  So did the polls.  But it was clear that Romney wasn't trying to win; he just didn't want to be knocked out.  And he did this in much the same way that boxers avoid being knocked out — by clutching your opponent.

And Romney did, on almost every foreign policy question, embrace what Obama had done.  This allowed Obama to talk about how Romney was all over the map on foreign policy, contradicting himself from what he has said earlier.  


It seemed they only had one large difference on foreign policy, and that was military spending, and Obama dlievered the smackdown there:


It was a good night for Obama supporters.  Neo-cons have to be a little disturbed, and indeed they were.  Undecided moderates fell for Obama, who looked stronger and more in control.

But does it make any difference?  Only at the margins.  Meaning, only in the swing states.  The candidates veered off topic into economic issues, and it was clear by the way they talked about the auto industry that they were gunning for Ohio.  I'm surprised there are any undecided voters LEFT in Ohio frankly, but there they were: two candidates trying to sop up every Ohio vote.

Now the final stretch.  I'm still optimistic.