Last night the Obama 2012 East Dekalb Neighborhood team and the Mainstreet Community in Stone Mountain gathered to watch round one in the 2012 Presidential debates.
As Obama supporters, we were decked out in our Obama 2012 buttons, “I Pray, You Vote” t-shirts, and blue pompoms. The atmosphere was electric and the crow was a buzz with acknowledgments that President Obama was going to “knock it out of the park” against Governor Romney. I heard one guest say, “Ole Mitt doesn’t stand a chance;” which was met with uproarious laughter and agreement.
As we settled into the nine o’clock hour, the consensus in the room was this: Finally, President Obama will hold Governor Romney to task for the inconsistencies, flip-flops, and down-right lies emanating from his campaign over this election cycle.
Throughout the debate, I kept waiting for the climatic punch or zing, as it were, (as Governor Romney would put it) from the President that would hit Mitt where it hurt. Let’s just say the tide quickly shifted…
Per usual, the debate began slowly, but quickly each candidate jumped right into the canned, carefully studied statements each had prepared for the weeks prior to the debate. Romney continued to insist that President Obama does not understand how the private, free market works, is oblivious on how to create jobs, and has gutted Medicare by $716 Billion. Contrary to our high hopes, President Obama seemed uninterested in debating Governor Romney, instead took to repeating policy achievements and / or goals for a next term that can be easily found on BarackObama.com. Not once did the President hold Governor Romney accountable for his wavering values or view points and his loose respect for factual information. I don’t know how many times Governor Romney blatantly lied about the $716 Billion The Affordable Care Act “gutted” from Medicare. This statement is simply not true. Countless independent agencies, political scholars, and the all-mighty Bill Clinton himself, has confirmed that the $716 Billion in question is the same amount, to the dollar, of waste that Governor Romney and Paul Ryan want to strip from Medicare over time in their “get your vouchers here” system of healthcare. As one of our guests commented on Romney: “Lies, lies, lies. Flip-flop, flip-flop.” This is just one example of how this debate, was no debate at all.
Sure there were a few good one-liners from the President here and there (sorry Mitt, your zingers flopped), but overall, not an impressive showing. On President Obama, another guest commented: “Too many commonalities-not enough specific differences in plans. Maybe the next debate will be better.” I think that pretty much sums it up.
Despite the lack luster performance by the President, I have one lingering question: Who hired that moderator anyway!?
Better luck next time Mr. President.