Obama. Romney. Ordinary Americans. What could go wrong?
10:40 p.m. Closing thoughts. My head is spinning! The walking around, the aggressive body posture. It's all so nerve wracking and exciting! The last time I was this invested in a debate on Long Island, two big kids were deciding whether to throw me in a dumpster behind Syosset High School.
Mitt Romney was on his heals during much of the debate, culminating in that fact-check by Candy Crowley on his deceptive answer on Libya. Barack Obama wasn't afraid to be aggressive, but he also wasn't the kind of officious, smiling aggressive of Mitt Romney. Romney's style lands him somewhere between a personal injury lawyer and a rich guy talking to a gate agent after his flight is delayed.
It remains a quandary: How to call Mitt Romney on his many overlapping, interweaving deceptions? But I think Barack Obama is cracking the code. I think we saw a successful recipe not just for this debate but for the final weeks of this campaign. And Mitt Romney did not like it.
10:21 p.m. That Libya back and forth was extraordinary. And the fact the Mitt Romney so thoroughly internalized his own BS that he was unprepared for the president to point out that, yes, he called it terror the very next morning ... well ... it was quite a moment! And the fact that Candy Crowley had the brass to call Romney out on it -- that's why she's there, and man has she done a phenomenal job. Jim Lehrer could only wish to have such a pair.