I'm recovering from last night's first Presidential Debate. And yes, I have to agree, Romney was the winner. He presented his arguments far more clearly than Obama, attacked successfully, while hardly needing to mount a defense, and he appeared more focused, comfortable and confident. One of the frustratings thing is that Obama left so much of his best ammunition un-spent. He didn't, as they say in sports, leave it all in the arena. For an excellent summary of the President's missed opportunity, see the following article by Michael Grunwald: http://swampland.time.com/2012/10/04/if-obama-wont-defend-the-last-four-years-why-would-america-give-him-another-four-years/?xid=newsletter-thepagebymarkhalperin .
During the post-convention period, I had been feeling more and more confident of Obama's eventual victory. I'd been eagerly looking forward to last night, figuring that all Obama needed to do was to present a strong case for what he's already accomplished and a projection of where we are headed, and his re-election would be all but assured. Frankly, I expected him to destroy Romney. Instead, the President took assault after assualt, sometimes making no response at all to Romney's charges - such as that he'd wasted billions in subsidies to failed "green" energy companies.
It's kind of ironic that, according to Gallup's daily polling on Presidential Job Approval, Obama just reached his highest rating of the last year, at 54% positive. I don't see how that can possibly stand up, after his passive acceptance of the mis-characterization of his record that Romney put forward last night. I'm reminded of that period of time during the Reagan administration, when progressives were so cowed, that all it took was the word "liberal" to send them scurrying for cover.
Thank goodness there are two debates to go. Last night's result has to shake Obama out of his lethargy, and I'm trusting that it will.