AirTalk for October 4, 2012

Romney outshines Obama in first presidential debate

Charlie Neibergall/AP

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and President Obama talk after the first presidential debate at the University of Denver on Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2012.

In Denver last night, presidential candidates Barack Obama and Mitt Romney squared off in the first of three debates. This one focused on domestic issues: the economy, health care and the role of government. Going into the debate, Obama’s poll numbers were on the rise, and the Romney camp desperately needed a strong showing to hopefully reverse the trend.

Well, they got it. The GOP candidate, who had repeated experience debating thanks to the seemingly endless Republican primary season, came out strong with a much more aggressive line of explanation for what he would do if he were president than the President. Obama, by contrast, tended to be a little sluggish, and even those on the left admit that Romney fared better in his performance.

Both campaigns have accused each other of playing fast and loose with facts; so how did they do last night on the truth-o-meter? With many debate-watchers eschewing network feeds for Twitter feeds, this was the first presidential debate where the winner could potentially emerge in real time, at least as far as public opinion goes.

How did you take in the debate? Vote in our poll and tell us your thoughts in the comments:

Weigh In:


Do you think it was a game-changer? Did you learn anything new about the candidates’ policies? If you’re still undecided, did you hear anything last night that could get you off the fence? How will this affect the debates moving forward?

Guests:

Alexandra "Alex" Gallardo-Rooker, vice-chair of the California Democratic party, representing the Obama campaign

Mike Spence, President, Conservative Republicans of California; Delegate pledged to Romney for the 2012 Republican National Convention

Brooks Jackson, director, FactCheck.org, University of Pennsylvania’s Annenberg Public Policy Center


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