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Presidential Debate II Hangover [Updated Below]

17 October 2012 @ 14:44

I’ve been sailing through The Ether on a skiff made of the rubble of Candy Crowley’s dignity to gather the best of the best analysis and commentary by some of the brightest minds sailing the Interwebs…

-Stacy McCain watched the debate and live-blogged it here, but he also checked out what the Fifth Columnists in the MSM were saying about it afterwards [he did this dirty job so we wouldn’t have to] and he filed a crackerjack report over at The American Spectator this morning. A highlight:

…By highlighting the Libyan issue and adding a new element of controversy, however, Crowley inadvertently ensured that the administration’s failure in Benghazi will be the focus of post-debate news coverage — which is unlikely to improve Obama’s re-election chances. The facts of the Libyan debacle simply are not in the president’s favor, and the final debate — Monday at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida — is specifically devoted to foreign policy….

NOTE: I’ll have some more on what may happen after the next Debate later in this post.

-In a posting chock-full of spot-on observations, Smitty unleashes his terrible swift sword [the Memeorandum thread is here]:

What a sad, pathetic joke that Obama has to have a woman attempt to stand up for him. Romney’s five sons were no doubt writhing at the raised eyebrows at 0:20 in the clip, recalling their own sad attempts at sliding one by dad, and getting thoroughly crushed by the Brows Of Doom.

Question For Those Who Voted For Obama In 2008: Are you now sufficiently embarrassed that you put this coddled, mom-jean-wearing, jug-eared, Narcissistic Nancy Boy in The Oval Office?

-In the Comments section of Smitty’s post, reader Jesse Dalton remarks:

Good line from article,” I may have to trundle over to the Romney campaign site for a wee donation.” That will get marked off my to-do list today.

No! The Romney/Ryan Campaign has plenty of cash to see them through the next few weeks.

Give your money to people like Allen West and Michele Bachmann, who really need it [any conservative or libertarian will do who is running for the Congress].

We need to keep warriors like them in the Congress and take control of both Houses.

-Obama and his minions have been claiming that he clearly labeled the Benghazi Massacre a terrorist attack on 12 September, and he did so again [with Candy Crowley’s aid] in the Debate last night. Joel Pollack demolished this claim as a lie on 14 October here. A highlight:

It is not necessary to examine the whole timeline of events to understand that Obama and his spokespeople are lying yet again. Obama’s own words on Sep. 12 are proof enough. He placed the 9/11 attacks in the context of global outrage against an obscure anti-Islam video—making sure to condemn it—and only addressed terror in an abstract sense, never as a description of, or a cause of, the attacks themselves.

Obama and his minions lied more than a month ago, and they are lying to America still.

In a Debate open thread over at Jeff Goldstein’s place, serr8d puts it quite well:

What he did there in his Rose Garden moment was, if I can be a judge of his intent, use the word generally and as an insurance policy, not as a specific description of events in Benghazi. And afterwords, Team Obama didn’t get specific until days later, after the spin had obviously failed.

So, specifically to the point, he lied; he is now caught, but has that word out there for to bitterly cling to.

I’m guessing the Left will carry his water, even though there’s hardly enough to drown a flea.

He forget to mention that what the Fifth Columnists are trying to carry is bilge water.

Donald Douglas thinks that water is going to get heavier as the days roll on:

I saw the pre-debate criticisms of Candy Crowley, and I held back from commenting. I wanted to give her a chance. But I can honestly say now that this was the worst debate moderation in presidential debate history — and I’ve been watching them since 1988. The moderator’s jobs is to moderate, which means to act as a referee and keep the proceedings on track. A moderator is never a participant, for to do so means inevitably to take up sides. So for President Obama to call on Crowley for a fact check during the debate is like asking the NFL refs to give you a favorable spot for the first down in the 4th quarter of a game that’s all tied up. No one would ever countenance it, and as the post-debate spin picks up, especially over the next couple of days, CNN’s going to come in for enormous criticism for propping up the president and violating the announced rules and advanced directives of the Commission on Presidential Debates.

In the title of his post, Donald says that Mzzz. Crowley was shilling for King Barack The Unready, and this is quite true, but I would I would describe her overall performance before, during, and after the Debate as ‘shrewing’.

Ben Stein:

Something went wrong tonight. Mr. Romney was not on the beam on Libya. But the dishonesty and shameless obfuscation of Mr. Obama were genuinely frightening. Look, Mrs. Clinton has already apologized, so we know something went badly wrong in Benghazi. Only Mr. Obama is still saying he didn’t do anything wrong. Mr. Obama is smooth, but he is in a box now, and let’s hope that Gov. Romney does not let him out next time.

Unfortunately, all we can do is hope because Willard does have a long history of wimping-out. His performance at the First Debate certainly gave us more encouragement that, perhaps, he had found the testicular fortitude to sustain him until 06 November, but Willard’s botching of that moment makes one wonder. To be fair, it occurred near the end of the festivities, so maybe he was a bit weary, especially after having to deal with one opponent who was telling brazen lies and making disreputable accusations, and with one who was hiding behind her objective journalist facade and her sex [Mitt is, after all, a Gentleman and rightly would not treat a lady as harsh as he would a man even a man-child].

Quin Hillyer:

Barack Obama was more aggressive and didn’t come across as if in despair tonight, so he didn’t get routed. But Mitt Romney still came across far better: a bit more likeable; more believable; less of a broken record; more substantive; more forward-looking; and, importantly, still more in control. On that last front, there were several really odd visuals that struck me: Several times, Romney was talking directly to Obama and looking directly at him, but Obama WOULD NOT look at Romney, either in listening to him or in answering him. It’s as if he just couldn’t look him in the eye. I’ve never been big into this theory of the “alpha male” on stage being the KEY determinant of who “wins” a debate. But it IS at least AN ingredient. And Romney was clearly more alph: He was direct; Obama wouldn’t look at him, which is what the “weaker” person does, in terms of body language.

And which is why Hillary kept looking down when she was ‘taking responsibility’ for Benghazi.

-The Lonely Conservative noticed something:

If you looked down or at your computer screen during the second presidential debate, you may have missed President Obama smirking and smiling when Mitt Romney brought up Operation Fast and Furious. This is a scandal that led to the deaths of American border agents as well as hundreds of innocents in Mexico. President Obama found it funny, and thanks to the press, he has never been held accountable.

Nobody died due to Watergate, but the press turned that into the biggest scandal ever to hit American politics. Operation Fast and Furious was responsible for the death of hundreds, at least, and most media outlets have remained silent, and Obama smiles and smirks about it. Don’t let him get away with it.

She has the video over at her joint.

That scene: Mr. Romney talking about Fast And Furious and Obama Smirking are perfect ingredients for an ad that should also list the American and Mexican body count [so far]. Hint, hint, Stupid Party.

-As is typical of royals who think they rule by Divine Right, Lady Michbeth once again displayed her contempt for feeling obligated to comply with any rules.

From Twitchy [tip of the fedora to Doug Ross]:

At the very beginning of the Hofstra University presidential debate, “moderator” Candy Crowley announced the rules of the road and noted that the “audience has agreed to be polite and attentive — no cheering, no booing, or outbursts of any sort.”

But many debate watchers on Twitter noticed that First Lady Michelle Obama — in bright pink in the bottom right-hand corner of the cutaway shown on Fox News (we’ve screen-capped it above) — clapped loudly, vigorously, and ostentatiously during the shameful Obama/Crowley tag-team against Romney over what the president said in the Rose Garden about Benghazi.

Joel Engel on the audience:

As for the people in the room, if they were truly undecided, why did they applaud when she “corrected” Romney?

That revealing moment instantly put the lie to the whole premise of the debate, both in terms of the “impartial” moderator and the “undecided” participants. Crowley and the majority of the audience were Obama partisans.

Why Romney and the Republican political leadership believed either premise enough to go along with this format and this moderator can best be explained by two words: stupid party.

One quibble, Mr. Engel, I prefer: The Stupidest Of The Stupid Party.

-Speaking of Twitter: I’m happy to report that our peers on the Right on Twitter have hijacked another Leftist hashtag and had their way with it. What’s even sweeter is that it’s one created by Little Barry hisself: #ObamaWinsDebate.

One of the funniest comes from @chuck_dizzle:

#ObamaWinsDebate is about as common an occurance as #FrenchMilitaryVictories.

One of the best could have been written by Stacy McCain, but comes from @stephensheiko:

.@BarackObama Ambassador Stevens remained unavailable for comment. #ObamaWinsDebate

William Jacobson thinks the Debate was pretty much of a draw and he believes there’s a lesson in this [he would, being a Professor and all]:

Trying to synthesize it all, consider the debate a call to action. Anyone who wants Obama defeated should disabuse themselves of the notion that Romney’s trajectory is unstoppable.

Obama will say or do anything to win. The best example is Libya, where Obama is trying desperately to turn the narrative from his administrations obviously false statements that the killing of our Ambassador was the result of a spontaneous protest over a video. It has been extremely well documented that the administration was making this claim for days after it knew better.

Yet what does Obama do? His team reminds him that he mentioned the words “act of terror” in a Rose Garden speech the day after the killing, even as his administration was in full denial mode.

He’s right. This is no time for getting cocky – let the Left do that.

William Teach has published a very good aggregation over at The Pirate’s Cove, and quote this interesting exchange

ROMNEY: Just going to make a point. Any investments I have over the last eight years have been managed by a blind trust. And I understand they do include investments outside the United States, including in – in Chinese companies.

Mr. President, have you looked at your pension? Have you looked at your pension?

OBAMA: I’ve got to say…

ROMNEY: Mr. President, have you looked at your pension?

OBAMA: You know, I – I don’t look at my pension. It’s not as big as yours so it doesn’t take as long.

ROMNEY: Well, let me give you some advice.

OBAMA: I don’t check it that often.

ROMNEY: Let me give you some advice. Look at your pension. You also have investments in Chinese companies. You also have investments outside the United States. You also have investments through a Cayman’s trust.


-After the Debate, Michelle Malkin sent out this Tweet:

Phrase of the night from Romney: “We don’t have to settle.” #townhalldebate

That’s a damn good slogan and should be used everywhere.

But, let us not forget that there’s one group that had to settle this Election Season: we conservatives.

-Finally, in a post from early this afternoon, Stacy McCain tactfully [I know, it surprised me too] deals with some of the more weighty issues concerning last night’s debate.

I’ll be Updating later with, at the very least, Jeff Goldstein’s analysis, which I haven’t had time to finish yet. I would appreciate your thoughts.

UPDATE at 2007…

-Dan Collins rushes in where angels fear to tread, but, after you read his post here, you’ll realize he ain’t no fool.

A highlight:

When Romney called Obama on his claim that he had called the Benghazi attack an “act of terror” in his speech, Obama smugly challenged Romney to “go on” and complete his accusation that that was not what the President had said, and then urged him to “check the transcript,” which moderator Candy Crowley conveniently had on hand, and which she conned in a nanosecond, before jumping in to back up the President’s claim. Later, Crowley would say that Romney was right in the main, but that he had “used the wrong word.” However, it was Obama’s original statement which was vaporous, and the reference to “acts of terror” doesn’t clearly connect with the specific act of terror in Benghazi. Given the President’s earlier invocation of the original 9-11, and the subsequent mischaracterizations of his spokescreatures and himself, that seems like a matter of contrived interpretation after the fact placed on a deliberately vague statement.

…many in the audience of “undecided voters” chosen to attend actually began to applaud at that point. Some accounts say that it was the First Lady who started the applause, which was not supposed to be permitted during the debate, but for what were they applauding? Here are a bunch of undecided voters who cheer Candy Crowley for jumping in on the President’s side . . . because they alone among the American electorate recalled exactly what it was that Obama said in his Rose Garden address? I don’t think so.

Yeah, I’m going there. I think Crowley and some of the audience were complicit in a scheme hatched by the President and his team to try to discredit Romney regarding Libya….

Dan makes a compelling case [per usual].

-Chris Wysocki was succinct and spot-on in his analysis of Mzzz. Crowley’s performance:

Partisan hack, was my take.

-Jeff Goldstein’s analysis is a must-read and I urge you to take the time to do so.

A highlight:

First, let’s get this out of the way: I can’t understand why the GOP keeps agreeing to debate formats that are openly hostile to the very notion of debating rather than presenting, and worse still, allow these formats to be moderated by devoted activist progressives posing as journalists. It’s a tactical blunder right out of the gate, and it wins them no points with that same media it appears hoping to appease.

That being said, the collusion between the President and the moderator last evening was perfectly — and often painfully or even laughably — obvious, even, I’d bet, to the doltish “undecideds” to whom we’re all reduced to pandering to in the last weeks before the election. And I think that any “points” Obama may have scored — when they were aided by Candy Crowley’s absurd and obvious forestalling of responses by Romney, punctuated by what appeared to be a desperate need, on her part, to change topics, where the public would have been better served to hear a complete discussion of topics already introduced — will only matter to pundits who will pretend to objectivity and sober analysis; to the rest of us, we know what was going on, and we know we had a moderator, along with a crowd weighted toward Obama, that was trying to create an impression of an Obama “win” where in fact there was none.

If Obama scored any rhetorical points at all, he did so with lies — and the reinforcement of those lies by Crowley. But the truth is, I can’t remember a single moment in that debate where I thought Obama came across as convincing or even competent.

-Paco has put forward some damn fine suggestions for conservative candidates and the GOP to follow for all future debates.

This one is close to my heart:

I don’t know if split-screen presentation is used in all of the debates, but I think it should be. Frequently, the body language and the facial expressions offer revealing insights into the candidates’ temperament and state of mind.


This is the most important point:

…Here’s the main thing you Republican commissioners need to remember: the MSM is also the enemy. Don’t let them choose the ground and the rules of engagement.

Stop being such wusses — and that goes for a good number of conservatives as well.

  1. M. Thompson permalink
    17 October 2012 @ 16:48 16:48

    The implication about a MSM “journalist” having dignity is like a politician’s virtue. Non existant.

  2. 17 October 2012 @ 18:06 18:06

    Why follow politics at all if your only aim is to shit in your paw and throw it at the people on your own side?

  3. 17 October 2012 @ 19:21 19:21

    I still have a huge stomach ache from watching that liar.
    Foxy Mitt but obummer on record, and like a trial lawyer, he set the trap for the liar in the next debate.

  4. Adobe_Walls permalink
    17 October 2012 @ 23:29 23:29

    Comrade President did much worse than meets the eye and as Wretchard wrote we had no reason to expect other than what we got from Crowley in terms of even handedness or the choice of questions. The explanation of why gas costs $4.00 was a major error when the logic is extrapolated. If it takes a recession (negative GDP) to get gas below $2.00 and at positive GDP of about 2% we have $4.00 gas then with real growth (3.5% minimum) we’ll have $6.00 gas? That’s the plan!?

    In Frank Luntz’s group one woman felt it was very important to point out that being undecided didn’t mean undecided between tehwon and Romney but rather between voting for Romney or not at all. She thinks there are alot of folks out there just like her. So do I.

    • 17 October 2012 @ 23:38 23:38

      Methinks you may be right [and Right, of course].

  5. 18 October 2012 @ 13:06 13:06

    Good report and aggregation Bob. I agree with Paco’s sentiment about the split screen. It does seem to show the opposing person’s body language.

    • thecampofthesaints permalink
      19 October 2012 @ 07:51 07:51

      That’s the only way I’ll watch one these days. I’ve seen so many over the years, I’ve got to have something interesting to look at.


  1. About the Benghazi “Terror” Statement in the Second Debate | Conservative Commune

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