More debate ramblings
October 4, 2012 Leave a comment
1) I think the key is that Romney was good; not that Obama was bad. Now, sure Obama was not “good” as far as the debating goes, but he certainly didn’t do anything that should cost him supporters. I’ll switch over to tennis. Obama wasn’t hitting a bunch of unforced errors, rather he kept returning not particularly deep and Romney kept hitting winners. I still think for Romney to win, it’s not enough for him to maximize his latent supporters, but that he’s actually got to eat into Obama a little bit. Nate Cohn agrees:
While Romney was on the offensive and Obama was listless, the president did not commit any gaffes and Romney did not level any blows that are likely to reverberate for the next few days. The president did not appear incapable or incompetent as much as he was simply out-debated. If you tend to believe that elections are about the incumbent, this matters. Forty-nine percent of voters have already made it clear that they’re willing to reelect the president, so the question is whether tonight’s debate introduced new information that might change their minds. If so, it would have to come from changing perceptions of Romney, not the president.
2) To that end, I think the thing to watch this week is not the margin between the two, but the actual numbers. If Obama holds around 49 and Romney still shows an inability to get across 47, then Obama is definitely good. If Romney does show consistent numbers over 47, we may well have a real race (a point Cohn also makes).