I’m still waking up here, working on my first cup of coffee. But a few observations about last night’s debate: President Obama was definitely the clear winner, hands down. Mitt Romney’s answers to most of the questions was to just restate the question and then go on long diatribes blaming Obama for the problem presented in the question. He never actually provided his solution to most questions. When he did, his statements were riddled with obvious factual errors and lies. Romney’s lack of substance and prevaricating was far more obvious this time than last, in my opinion.
Right out of the box Romney tried to bulldoze over Candy Crowley, arguing with her, talking over her, and demanding to use more than his allotted amount of time. He even argued about which question he was supposed to answer. He looked like an ass. Obama did a little bit of this too and he shouldn’t have, but Romney was by far the entitled Daddy Warbucks in the room, demanding that the help seat him at his regular table right now, dammit! Don’t you people know who I am? That’s how Romney came off.
From the get-go, Romney decided to chuck all of the agreed-upon rules out the window. It’s a real turnoff when anyone does it, but Romney came off as a bully, and he played right into Obama’s argument that Romney and his buddies want to play by a different set of rules. As Chris Matthews so beautifully observed after it was all over, “Mitt Romney is the guy on the plane who won’t turn off his phone.” It’s true. He’s the guy who doesn’t think the rules apply to him. We all know that guy, he’s the asshole customer you hate to have in your section, the unreasonable client who spends every meeting belittling you. Yeah, we all know that guy and we all hate him.
Romney floundered and flailed when asked such simple questions as, what would you do to fix the gender pay gap? Romney’s non-response was to talk about how as governor he asked his staff to find women for his cabinet — and within minutes, “Binders Full Of Women” was on Tumblr.
But hands-down my favorite moment was when Romney was asked how he’s different from George W. Bush. Romney completely ignored that question and whined to Crowley about how he didn’t get a chance to address something about China from two questions ago. It was hilarious, and it opened the door to Obama’s response that at least George W. Bush didn’t want to turn Medicare into a voucher system or try to get immigrants to “self-deport.” It was hilarious because as we all know, there is no difference between Romney and Bush. Romney’s advisors are all straight out of the Bush Administration. Romney and Ryan have not articulated any idea that is in any way different from what the Bush Administration advocated: tax cuts and deregulation. It’s been the Republican Party mantra for decades. It’s all they’ve got, it’s the same ol’ shit, repackaged. It failed, and we all know it. Republicans need new ideas but they’re incapable of generating any, since their think tanks and idea factories are simply disguised propaganda mills.
Basically, Romney is a big phony, and last night he looked it.