October 16, 2012

POST-DEBATE COMMENTS:  Earlier in the evening, I posted my list of prognostications about the presidential debate.  Now, I’ll comment on whether, or to what extent, they came to fruition:

1.  Candy Crowley hones in on abortion (Roe v. Wade, specifically) and contraception and tries to paint Romney as a threat to lady parts and a “flip flopper”

Surprisingly, there was no talk of Roe v. Wade.  There was, however, a big emphasis on women’s issues generally– an overemphasis, in my opinion.  Who really cares about the Lilly Ledbetter Act?  There were at least three or four Obama references to Planned Parenthood, which is the Democrats’ dog whistle for the “war on women” and protecting our lady parts from the evil Republicans.

2.  Crowley throws Obama a softball on Benghazi and gives him plenty of room to blame the 9/11 events on Hillary and intel

OMG was this correct!  The question actually asked was inane, but Obama couldn’t even answer it, instead avoiding it for many minutes and then finishing with a generic “we’re going to look into this thoroughly” kind of response.  When Romney responded by pointing out that it took many days for Obama to even call the events in Benghazi an act of terror, Obama responded that he did call it an act of terror in the Rose Garden on 9/12. Candy Crowley jumped in, interrupting Romney to support Obama’s statement.  Obama did, ONCE, refer to a generic “act of terror” on 9/12, at the end of his remarks in which he repeatedly referred to the attack being a response to the Mohammed YouTube video.  Specifically, Obama said, “No acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation, alter that character or eclipse the light of the values that we stand for.”

Crowley’s intervention to support Obama, in my opinion, was inappropriate, unfair, and lop-sided.  She acted like a cheerleader, and as a result of her unprofessional conduct, she provoked pro-Obama folks in the audience to clap, which further amplified the unprofessional, gang-bang on this important issue.

Fact checker and time will tell the story of this debacle and expose Obama’s outright lie.

3.  Crowley hits Romney on Romneycare and (again) tries to paint Romney as a flipper

Didn’t happen.  Very little talk about health care, though Romney tried on several occasions to talk about how its impending implementation in 2014 is frightening small business owners away from job creation.

4.  Crowley asks both candidates about gay marriage, asking Romney something along the lines of “Governor, do you support the right of two adults of the same gender to obtain equal treatment in marriage?” (or some other sickeningly one-sided phraseology)

This issue didn’t come up at all.  In fact, it hasn’t come up in either debate, and one wonders:  will it ever?  Or are both political camps afraid to touch this third rail?

5.  Crowley pushes Romney to explain his tax reform plan, but doesn’t ask Obama to explain his

This happened, in my opinion.  In response to a question about taxes (“Governor Romney, you have stated that if you’re elected president, you would plan to reduce the tax rates for all the tax brackets and that you would work with the Congress to eliminate some deductions in order to make up for the loss in revenue. Concerning the – these various deductions, the mortgage deductions, the charitable deductions, the child tax credit and also the – oh, what’s that other credit? I forgot. The education credits, which are important to me, because I have children in college. What would be your position on those things, which are important to the middle class?”), Romney laid out his plan in considerable detail.

Obama then responded with general platitudes about Romney’s numbers not adding up (ironic).  Crowley then turned the discussion back to Romney, asking, “If somehow when you get in there, there isn’t enough tax revenue coming in. If somehow the numbers don’t add up, would you be willing to look again at a 20 percent…?”   Crowley was thus suggesting that the numbers would not add up, pushing Romney for far greater detail/elaboration than Obama, who was given a free pass on this critically important question of dealing with the budget/taxes.

6.  Crowley interrupts Mitt on several occasions, asks him pointed followup questions, but uses a soft touch with the President, and never interrupts him once.

Undoubtedly happened. At one point, I thought Crowley might get out her Obama pom-poms and do a little cheer: “Give me an ‘O’!”

Full transcript of the debate is available here.