Second Presidential Debate: Afterthoughts and Observations

President Barack Obama addresses the House Dem...
President Barack Obama  (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The second presidential debate was an undeniable comeback for President Obama from an underwhelming performance the first time out. With so much on the line, and a great deal of ground to lose, the president returned to form. Not only by setting Governor Romney straight on his misrepresentations, but also doing more to control the conversation.

Romney tried to use the same strategy from the last debate, and it did not serve him. This town hall style format was more based on having to answer the questions pitched from the audience, and he failed to do that. He looked like an empty suit giving a business presentation to employees, not someone jockeying for votes. President Obama, on the other hand, came off forceful but not angry. One of the highlights of the night was when he got tired of Romney insisting he said one thing on Benghazi and stated “Get the transcript” That was an intellectual chin check for real.

Romney did really not help himself with how he answered many of the questions tonight. When it came to the issue of women and equal pay in the workplace, Romney handled that poorly. President Obama was able to answer the question and quite skillfully weave in the Lilly Ledbetter Act. Governor Romney, clumsily responded to the question of hiring by noting that he had “binders of women” to search for qualified employees. Ugh. Talk about turning  subjects into  objects. It just came out… wrong. It is already a meme. That is a pretty good indication of how terrible it sounded.

On top of all that, the issue of the 47 percent comment came up. President Obama really hit him hard over that, ending the debate with the issue.  This was a clear win all around. No question. Whether it was health care, the tax issues, Romney looked bad on all of these points. Not once did we hear a feasible plan from Romney. All we got were talking points about “leading from behind” shoehorned into a discussion where uncommitted voters wanted answers. This was not the time for a repeat performance on the Governors part. All in all Obama came much stronger, and energized his base around the issues of energy concerns among other things. Definitely a more interesting exchange, and so much to pour over in the next  24 hours.  I am sure more will be heard on the gaffes, highlights, and low points of tonight.  So, lets end off with asking the obvious question: Who do you think won this second debate?

Marc W. Polite






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  1. “Who won the second debate?” – The same as the first, the capitalist class. Since they have both candidates, they always win.

  2. Of course Polite on society afterthoughts is an unbiased opinion of the debate (We must have watched different debates). My view is not one from the choir. At least we had a good match this time around instead of the no contest, please throw in the towel performance of Obama’s last debate with Romney. Bout two, Romney went toe to toe with Obama, and admittedly I agree Obama had his moments. The recent attack should not have been used for political gain, but to set the record straight Obama didn’t say the attack was a terrorist attack in his rose garden speech, that Intel didn’t come out until two weeks later, you can Listen to the speech yourselves on youtube, Obama use the word terrorist in a different context than what he alluded to during the debate. I just love that Obama had the mediator helping him out, after the last debate Obama needed all the help he could get. So after four years of no “Change” in the economy, job market, energy cost higher, food cost higher, the rent is just to damn high, and adding trillion of borrowed money from china to the deficit the choir feels we should now move “Forward” with of 4 more years of the same, because Romney said he was looking for women to fulfill top job posts and was given “Binders of Women”, now that’s so funny, after that who would believe a man like Romney could deal with the health care issue, help business in creating lasting jobs, bring down the deficit, balance the budget, hey! wait a minute, Romney actually did all that as Governor.
    Did get that Obama’s financial portfolio profits from investments in China, you must have missed that, Obama made sure to squash that, pew close call.
    No minds are being changed here, but I always love a good fight.

  3. I love to read comments by people who actually support one candidate over the other and think that they actually stand for different things – it is so quaint. Yes, they squabble, but they both agree on the big issues: give money to the banks and the capitalists and making working people and poor people pay for the crisis. Both agree on endless war and attacks on basic rights through the ‘war of terror’. They both make me sick, and both represent the capitalists against the workers – give me on good strike any day instead of this repulsive nonsense. What workers need is mass struggle – that will make both parties afraid and might actually win something.

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