Last night America watched the first debate between candidates Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama. The analysis by pundits post-debate gave the edge to Romney citing the President’s “rustiness” in debate skills, failure to use the best weapons in the campaign’s arsenal, and his lack of response to certain statements by his opponent.
I woke up this morning with a revelation. Our very intelligent, eloquent, clever President did not suddenly lose his faculties when confronted with Mitt Romney Full Blast. One piece of his plan was to let as many facts and figures as possible spew forth from the other podium in the allotted 90 minutes. Mitt’s mastery of mendacity is legend. With Mitt Romney Full Blast, the number and repetion of Obama’s “mistakes” and Romney’s “promises” was greater than the President could have imagined, thus creating a fact-checking frenzy. Those have been squarely in Obama’s court during this campaign. I believe I heard Romney say the exact opposite of statements made previously but I’ll leave that research to people with more time to sift through the debris.
A second piece of the plan was about style. Debates may have a certain protocol alll their own, but the President chose to demonstrate visually that cooler heads will prevail. Mitt Romney Full Blast bull-dozed Lehrer easily and repeatedly insisted on getting the last word. The President looked presidential, and mostly respected the moderator.
In short, I realized it was a case of giving someone enough rope to hang themselves; a chance to dig themselves a hole and just get in deeper and deeper.
Perhaps I’m the only American who woke up realizing the wonderfulness of Obama’s restraint last night. It came to me that his reserve was the only way he could keep from telling Romney what he really thinks about all that. Usually when I see something, I discover I am not alone. This is reassuring. We’ve got your back, President Obama.