COMMENTARY | The reason President Barack Obama won is that most of the commentators who were featured during the debate affirmed that the clear winner was Mitt Romney. There is an excellent summary of the debate posted by ABC News.
Why? Because nobody took him down. It was a recurring theme in the discussion accompanying the actual debate that the other candidates basically left Romney alone. Romney will most likely continue to be the front-runner for the GOP nomination despite his obvious evasion of questions for which he substituted long-winded patriotic rhetoric.
After Jon Huntsman spoke articulately about his tax plan which was endorsed by the Wall Street Journal, Romney was asked to comment on it. He blatantly refused to answer the question and instead began a long idealistic ramble designed to make us feel patriotic and hopeful but didn't actually say anything. I was amazed at how much Romney got to talk. He talked a lot and said very little that had any substance. If he's the winner, President Obama is in good shape.
Not only did Romney win because nobody took him down, he won because the other candidates made a lot of mistakes.
Rick Perry has once again outdone himself. He thinks we should send troops back to Iraq! I was participating in the Yahoo survey while the debate was going on, and the reaction was immediate. Perry blew it again.
Huntsman was consistently articulate and reasonable. Unfortunately he decided to speak Mandarin. It didn't win him points with too many voters, although I was impressed. Former Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge, one of Huntsman's most prominent supporters according to the Huffington Post, still thinks he's the most electable. I agree, but the GOP isn't looking.
Santorum got worked up about gay marriage and diverted attention away from where he could be strong, his economic solutions.
Newt Gingrich was Newt Gingrich when he's good. He kept his head tonight. In light of his record, that's not enough for me.
I think Ron Paul is right about the economy getting worse before it gets better. It's just that his foreign policy scares me. I don't think we can just stay out of everything and let the rest of the world do what it will. I suspect that he's just too great a risk for GOP voters.
There is a huge "anybody but Romney" contingent, according to New York Magazine. Will Romney be the one the GOP nominates to take on President Obama? It seems likely.
I was watching some of the tweets during the debate, and this one from "Guest" says it all.